Climb Up to Dadam for Unique Korean Dishes

I am far from a Korean food expert. I just know that I like it and I’ve dabbled with the usual bibimbap, galbi, mandoo, and soondubu jigae. But recently we got a tip from a reader about a new vendor on the top floor of Food Gallery 32 in the old Angry Chicken space serving Korean stews. I had assumed what I would have found would have been similar to what I have tried before on 32nd Street. I was in for a surprise.

Dadam has only been open for a few months, but they started to get busy right around lunch time when I came by. The menu is a bit daunting since most of the dishes were unrecognizable to me and many stretched past the $10 ML price point. I could have stuck with something for $9.99 , like spicy squid or Korean pancakes. But I was most interested in their signature noodle dishes.

You get to choose a style of handmade noodle (three-colored, whole wheat with burdock, or whole wheat with seaweed root) and a type of soup (perilla seed or seaweed with oyster). I asked for the cashier’s suggestion and she looked doubtfully at me. She seemed to want me to stick with the seasme-like perilla seed (which she said was more mild), but I said I wasn’t afraid of unusal flavors. So I got the seaweed broth.

The soup came with a side of two kimchi variations, which were good, and the portion felt generous.

The light green broth swam with hairs of seaweed and very interesting noodles that glowed purple, yellow, and white. There was also bobs of mussels, plenty of scallions, and different colored mochi balls. It was quite unusual.

Flavorwise, it tasted a bit briny and quite garlicky with bites of the ocean. It was fresh and lively with just a slight kick of spice throughout. I appreciated the delicateness of the broth and the chewy bites of noodles and rice balls. It might be the most unique and interesting Korean dish I’ve ever had.

After some research, I learned that the name of this dish is Maesangi and it is quite difficult (if impossible) to find in New York. It’s a healthy, winter soup and is made from a special kind of thin seaweed called fulvescens.

The soup does taste healthy and cleansing. But if that’s somthing that concerns you, they also sell Ox Knee Bone Soup and Korean-style hot dogs for balance. This hidden gem is worth the climb and worth the splurge.

Dadam at Food Gallery 32, 11 W 32nd St (btw. B’way+5th)


  • those colors and textures are a little scary, would still try

  • I tried this soup recently. It’s quite an experience and much different than anything I’ve tried before. The “seaweed hairs” are constantly present and moving. It does have an ocean taste but it’s not salty. People that want unique flavors and food experiences should try it.

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