Mister Bossam is a Welcome New Pork Belly Option from Korea

It would appear as if L.A. is in the midst of an Asian chain invasion. Following in the footsteps of Din Tai Fung, the famous Taiwanese dumpling shop with 2 locations in Arcadia and 1 in Glendale, we’ve seen a steady stream of big (?) names from overseas open all over the city.  Korean BBQ from Kang Hodong Baekjong, Sichuan specialities from Meizhou Dongpo, Hai Di Lao’s hot pot, and Japanese ramen chain Larmen Dosanko are just a few of the new spots looking to test how hungry L.A. eaters are for “authentic” Asian experiences- without having to go through LAX.  The latest to join the parade is Mister Bossam, a South Korean cafe specializing in pork belly and something called “LA Grilled Cheese Baby Pork Ribs”.

If you’re in the mood for boiled pork belly wrapped in lettuce leaves and topped with kimchi and oysters, then 9 times out of 10 you’ll find yourself at Kobawoo. But if Kobawoo is the Park’s Barbecue of bossam, then Mister Bossam is the Kang Hodong Baekjong. Being a newer chain its menu offers a more modern take on the pork belly wraps, distinguished by a number of sauces that come poured over the meat.  You can get it plain (as it’s served most of the time) or topped with a green onion sauce, a sweet garlic sauce, or a hot and sweet red sauce that is likely made from gochujang- the korean red pepper paste.   A dinner platter will run you $22 to $26, but at lunch they offer at $10 lunch special that looks like this:


If you’re into thicker cut meat that seems to be more roasted than boiled, you will love Mister Bossam. The lunch special is only offered plain, but if you ask nicely they might give you one of the sauces on the side. There are no oysters, but you do get rice, lettuce wraps, a small but solid assortment of kimchi, salad and soup.  It’s as great as it looks.

There’s also an assortment of stews offered in lunch ($9) and larger portions ($24) as well as makgooksoo, a cold noodle dish that looks similar to the dotori gooksoo served at Kobawoo- but with sea snails.  Think: cold bibimbap, but with noodles instead of rice.


As for that “grilled cheese with baby pork ribs”? It looks like a pile of pork galbi served atop a melted cheese filled moat- not unlike the cheese corn you get at Kang Hodong Baekjong.  Sadly it’s $30, and there’s no lunch special version, so it will require a second visit and some reinforcements.  Anybody free for lunch today?

Mister Bossam, 338 S. Western 213-388-5379


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