Downtown Lunch: Korean BBQ Cart

Midtown workers shouldn’t have all the fun, so to even the score, I’ve brought on Daniel Krieger as an official Downtown Lunch Correspondent to write up some of the tasty stuff you can get in the lower half of Manhattan. He’s a great photographer (ensuring good food porn), but more importantly he is a lover of cheap, unique and delicious eats (or as I like to call it- Midtown Lunch’ish food.) The appearance of the Happy Well Being House Cart spawned a lot of “what’s with Korean carts and fried fish?” questions this week. Of course there is also Kim’s Aunt Kitchen Cart that is popular for their fried fish sandwiches, but also serves bulgogi. Well, it seems as if Downtown has got a Korean/Fried Fish cart of their own.

Downtown Lunch: Korean BBQ Cart

When Ruth Reichl twittered about the Korean BBQ cart on the corner of Charlton and Varick last week, Zach emailed me immediately with a call to action. You all know how I feel about street carts- but clearly I had to do it. For Zach. For my Midtown Lunch cred. But most of all… for Ruth!

Downtown Lunch: Korean BBQ Cart

The first thing I saw when I walked up to the truck was the “fried fish box w/ rice and salad” and ordered it immediately. I then stood to the side waiting, daydreaming of a crispy golden fried piece of fish swimming in hot sauce…. but right before the woman handed me my lunch, I came to and realized I was at a Korean BBQ truck, not the famed Sea World, and my mind raced into the not so distant future to anticipate this conversation:

Zach – Krieger, so how was the Korean BBQ?
Me – Really good, I got the fried fish.
Zach – You got the what?
Me – Fried Fish! it was flaky and golden and awesome!
Zach – Dude are you an idiot?
Me – Fried fish!
Zach – Is this conversation really happening?

Downtown Lunch: Korean BBQ Cart

So as I came back to reality I realized that I had to do something quick. The people working there were quite friendly but asking to change your order as it’s basically finished is a bit too much to ask, so I scanned the crowd, which was about 4 people deep, to see if anyone was going to order the same dish. My savior came in the form of Matt, a nice young man who was ordering the fish anyway. I asked if he would take it for me since I ordered the wrong thing.

He looked at me strange at first which is understandable, considering how strange I look, but then said sure. I gave him my card and asked for his feedback. He actually emailed me an hour later and said of the fish, “Pretty good if you are in the mood for fried. Def needs the hot sauce and tarter or it will get a bit dry. The ‘salad’ could use some dressing too.” Thanks Matt!

Downtown Lunch: Korean BBQ Cart

As far as the Korean BBQ I eventually got, well it was a decent meal and made to order so it’s literally steaming hot when you get it. But the spices were absent and the meat was just a bit bland and overcooked (for safety reasons maybe?) I splashed some hot sauce on there to bring it to life but that only did so much. I admit I’m a Korean BBQ novice, but the times I’ve had it in Koreatown I don’t remember needing hot sauce to liven up the action. And the ‘salad’ as my buddy Matt calls it, was just a bit of iceberg lettuce and tomatoes. The rice had peas in it too, which is not where peas should be in my opinion.

Downtown Lunch: Korean BBQ Cart

GOD what a spectacle it must have been if you saw me that day. I actually ended up eating the entire thing on the seat of my bicycle because it was starting to rain and I had nowhere to go and when I waved at an approaching Ruth Reichl she screamed and ran in the other direction (*cries a little*)

While I can’t wholeheartedly recommend the new Korean BBQ cart on the corner of Charlton and Varick, I can say it’s a good spot to hit up if you want something different for lunch, and only want to spend 6 bucks.

I did end up asking for a sample of the fish, though, and it was tasty. Dammit Zach, next time lemme get the Fried Fish!

Korean BBQ Cart, Corner of Varick and Charlton

Photos and post by Daniel Krieger



  • Whatever man. I do what I want, since all our computers are on the same network your comment is only slightly true.

    It’s not my fault you don’t like cute girls or fish pitas.

  • Whoa whoa whoa Gabe…save it for NHL ’09. It’s true ZBrow, do you mind if I call you ZBrow? We work together and those who work together eat together, welcome to New York. To top this spicy fish pita cake we work in the web biz and love to blow up comment sections. I’ll see you around…most likely shaking in a mid town gutter from withdrawl. Not from the lack of Varick St food, but from a Vitamin C B and G deficiency: Vitamin Cute Bulgolgi Girl…or I guess Vitamin Chicken Box and Gyros…

    I am gonna leave you with this rhyme straight off my dome:

    I meet a lotta senoritas
    but you cannot beat a pita
    so f*ck peta i want that meat braw
    know what i am sayin’? ya…
    I bump gucci mane
    I eat at that stand
    I wanna spend a grand
    I wanna take her hand
    …in marriage
    christen a carriage
    I work at Varick and King
    I am the veritable king
    I dance and sing
    my bike bling bling
    i am the super commuter
    I own hella computers
    Been on the net since 3rd grade
    Now I belong to the #1 pay grade
    Trying to drink some lemonade
    and have sexy with a bulgogi gurl


  • My site = my business.

    How about this… next time you and all your co-workers decide to post the same comment, about the same truck, within five minutes of each other, on the same computer, maybe it’d be better if you didn’t pretend like you didn’t know each other. That way we know you’re not shilling… just trying to keep the site honest.

  • CockChug has procreated and it’s a jive-talking triple-schizo violent juvenile delinquent.


  • Gabe, trev and chris.. you guys are assholes.
    Zach has a posse and we’ll kick your ass at that cart.

    Lamest shilling. ever. go back to jersey where you belong.

  • Just for the record, none of those three are my coworker. My coworker agrees with me about this.

  • Mamacita. Not from Jersey, but I guess thats what dumb people immediately refer to for insults. I don’t care about Zach. I don’t care about your posse because I’m a ghost remember?? Dummy. All I care about is the fish pita. Never thought I would say this, but I’ll see you at the cart Mamacita. Holla back girl.

  • Man, these downtown she-male gigilos really get upset when they can’t get decent korean food. Don’t blame Zach when you got problems with yo’ pimp for not giving you longer lunch break. How about RUN your lazy behinds to the midtown cart or korean-town and stop bitchin’.

  • This website sucks. I just wanted to express my love for the fish pita, and you get all this negative energy from midtown yuppies. Good thing I’m a ghost and don’t care. The guy above me obviously doesn’t know what it’s like to have a real job. A real job usually entails little time to grab quick good bites to eat and actually sit down and enjoy it. Once again, I say…fish pita is so good. I’ll see you at the cart TC. Holla back girl.

  • Um, I work too or how could I afford to eat in midtown? But I willingly travel for good eats, unlike your lazy ass! There are subways/ buses. And at least I don’t have to sell myself to strangers for lunch money or answer to a pimp.
    I’m not hatin’ on your love for fishy pita. You and your other she-male buddies were messing around on this site for MIDTOWN LUNCH’ers (not our fault your downtown lunchin’ is limited – go to chinatown! or bring your own damn lunch.) so I thought I would express myself too! Don’t start the hate if you can’t handle it yourself.

    A ghost wouldn’t care how far they had to go for food (do ghosts eat?)? You’re just being lazy, Casper. Go to the midtown korean BBQ cart if you can’t find your fix elsewhere. I ain’t afraid no ghost! :-P

  • Alright guys… enough. Let’s not turn this into a Downtown vs Midtown thing. Everybody is welcome on the site…

    Just wanted to let people know that those comments were all coming from the same source. If it’s three guys, working in the same Downtown office, who like to comment on blogs together, so be it. As long as there’s full disclosure…

    Welcome to the site boys. You are going to fit right in.

  • Ghosts do eat. Didn’t u watch ghostbusters? What did u think Slimer did all day? You should be afraid. I’ll eat your kids if I don’t get my fish pita fix soon. Stop insinuating that I’m poor. I made the internet. So I’m rich. I know which site I’m on. The ugly one with dated designs that look like its still 1997. Writing is a average. I’d give it a B-. Photographs look great tho. What can I say? I’m a rich picky ghost. Where was I, oh, did I mention I want a fish pita? Doesn’t matter, I’ll keep reminding you.

  • Well, Slimer is an gluttonous exception. You’re defintiely not as cool as he is, the easy-going spirit. He would try to eat food all the time but it never happened (the food would just fall behind him). Stay Puft Marshmallow Man (also cooler than you) was a big boy but didn’t need to eat…but he was a monster/ not ghost. Haha.

    I didn’t say you were poor and at least I didn’t accuse you of not working or being a bum. I don’t have any kids for you to eat (Ghosts eating kids now?). Make your own fish pita at home if you’re too f’king lazy to come to midtown. And don’t use Zach’s site at all then if you don’t like it, lousy hater! Go sniff fishheads to offset your fish pita withdrawal.

  • Thats absurd. Rich ghosts don’t make their own food. Dummy.

  • Rich ghost too cheap and lazy to look around (like Gabriel) to hire help do. Moron!

  • What are u? 12? I’m done here. Good luck in life. Ur gonna need it. Still waiting for you at the cart. Fag.

  • Oh yea. Real mature of you. I’m not gay but thanks for the name-calling. It just allows me the freedom to call out your she-male trick-selling ass. I’m not the one pretending to be a ghost here, kid! Get back on your street corner so you can make enough dough to eat lunch tomorrow, loser!

  • See u there. Watch your back.

  • Yea, clearly you’re not done here and no man of any word.
    I’m suppose to be afraid of a scrawny she-male ghost? What’s so horrifying? Maybe you smeared your eyeliner and mascara. Ooooo.

  • Alright, let’s end this…lunch is for suckers anyways.

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