Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Ahgassi Gopchang (Los Angeles, CA)

Ahgassi Gopchang Korean BBQ Restaurant
3744 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90005
Wed 02/03/2016, 06:10p-8:30p

Ahgassi Gopchang Exterior

A KBBQ place that I'd been wanting to try for a while now is Ahgassi Gopchang, which means, more or less, "young lady intestines" in Korean. As the unfortunate translation would imply, the place bills itself as an entrails specialist. The restaurant is actually part of the Kang Hodong Baekjeong family, and debuted back in May 2013.

Ahgassi Gopchang Interior
Ahgassi isn't quite as large as KHB, but features a similar sort of vibe, with a particularly petite ventilation system in place.

Ahgassi Gopchang Menu: Beef Ahgassi Gopchang Menu: Pork Ahgassi Gopchang Menu: Intestine Ahgassi Gopchang Lunch Menu Ahgassi Gopchang Beverage List
As for the menu, there are but three cuts of gut, joined by a complete beef and pork selection, with combos available of course. You'll also find appropriate sides and stews and such, as well as a handful of lunch specials. Drink-wise, there's not much to speak of, just the usual suspects, but corkage was available at $15. Click for larger versions.

Watery dongchimi was properly refreshing.

The requisite salad was on the sparse side, but did its job.

A plate of shaved onions provided a kick of astringency when called upon.

Chadol Sauce
The ubiquitous "chadol sauce," with its shards of onion and jalapeƱo.

Garlic & Scallion
We were instructed to augment the above sauce with garlic and scallion.

2015 Council Vienne
We definitely made use of the corkage policy. Our first beer was the 2015 Council Vienne, a biere de mars fermented with Brettanomyces and Lactobacillus, aged in oak barrels for four-and-a-half months, then blended with the brewery's bourbon barrel-aged quad and house sour before bottling. Deliciously rich, aromatic notes of ripe stone fruit and yeast on the nose. On the tongue the beer was effervescent, with a sweet fruited malt character leading to a dry, earthy finish. Really nice, and quite possibly the best effort yet from Council.

Buchu Muchim
Buchu muchim showed off a great zestiness from the chives.

Baek Kimchi
Baek kimchi was tasty, with just enough crunch and acidity.

Marinated gaenip (perilla), if you like.

2015 Bruery Terreux Juggling Walruses
The 2015 Bruery Terreux Juggling Walruses was a sour stout--a third aged in bourbon barrels and the rest aged in wine barrels--with black currants added. Smelled of sweet dark fruit and spice and slight roast, while the taste followed, revealing more sugary fruit, malt, and oak, with a distinct finish redolent of brown sugar.

Prime thinly sliced brisket
Prime thinly sliced brisket (Grilling)
Prime thinly sliced brisket (Cooked)
We ordered a small Beef Combo [$55.99] to start, and first to arrive at the table was, unsurprisingly, the chadol baegi. It was actually one of the better briskets I've had: tender, juicy, with a really satisfying smokiness. I definitely appreciated the additional crunch and lightness provided by the mung bean sprouts, too.

Gyeran Jjim
The gyeran jjim was also a standout, fluffy to the bite, but with a particularly deep, savory quality to it.

2014 Deschutes Black Butte XXVI
Created for the brewery's 26th birthday, the 2014 Deschutes Black Butte XXVI was an imperial porter brewed with pomegranate molasses, partially aged in bourbon barrels, with cacao nibs and cranberries added. The beer gave up a bouquet of tart brown sugar and chocolate, while the taste comprised sweet, fruity notes commingled with cocoa and complemented by molasses richness on the finish.

Prime beef tongue
Prime beef tongue (Grilling)
Prime beef tongue (Cooked)
Hyeo mit gui was a winner as well, the tongue cooking up beefy and charred, with a great chew to it.

Altari Kimchi
Homemade altari kimchi that one of my dining companions brought was a treat, showing off that perfect combination of pungent spice and crunchy-yet-supple textures.

2016 Tree House Curiosity Twenty Four
Next to drink was the 2016 Tree House Curiosity Twenty Four, an American-style pale ale hopped with Columbus and Citra. I really enjoyed this one, with its wonderfully hoppy, floral aromatics and palate of hoppy bitterness meshed with softly fruity, citrus notes.

Prime seasoned boneless short rib
Prime seasoned boneless short rib (Grilling)
Prime seasoned boneless short rib (Cooked)
Our final item from the beef combo was the jumulleok, a super tender, flavorful cut that was certainly tasty, though a touch sweet for some at the table.

Doenjang Jjigae
Doenjang jjigae was a proper rendition, the earthiness of the soy bean well-tempered by all the veggies and tofu present.

2015 Logsdon Szech 'n Brett
The 2015 Logsdon Szech 'n Brett is a relatively new addition to the brewery's line-up, a session-style Brett saison spiced with Szechuan pepper. I quite enjoyed the beer, especially its delectable aromas of sweet, ripe pear. In terms of taste, think fruity and soft, with a mild Brettiness finished by subtle hits of spice.

Mountain tripe & Abomasum
Mountain tripe & Abomasum (Grilling)
Mountain tripe & Abomasum (Cooked)
Given where we were, we had to try some innards, and thus ordered a small Yang Daechang Combo [$51.99]. Two cuts of meat arrived simultaneously. In the front was the yang gui, which conveyed a sort of sweet funk to it along with a good charring and a bit of snappiness to the bite. The makchang gui, meanwhile, was perhaps a bit chewier, with a slightly more intense flavor profile.

Kimchi Jjigae
A prototypical preparation of kimchi jjigae was included in the combo.

2015 Cigar City Sardo Numspa
The 2015 Cigar City Sardo Numspa was our final beer, an imperial stout brewed with roasted hazelnuts, two types of cacao nibs, and Indonesian vanilla, then rested on cypress wood. Smelled of rich brown sugar and chocolate, with a woodiness underlying. Taste brought more chocolate, joined by vanilla and hints of hazelnut, with the cypress again peeking through. This was ostensibly inspired by Devil's Food cake, and I could definitely see where they were going.

Gopchang Sauce
A special sauce was brought out for the gopchang, this one sweet 'n' spicy.

Large intestine
Large intestine (Grilling)
Large intestine (Cooked)
Last up was the daechang gui, a sweet, fatty, chewy, well-charred presentation of large intestine.

I'm generally not a huge fan of gopchang to begin with, but they do it proper here. The rest of the meat was right up there as well in terms of quality, and service was commendable by K-Town standards too. Another one to add to your KBBQ short list.


Blogger Charlie Fu said...

i'm obsessed with this place. Love the brisket and the daechang gui. I do with they had the egg moat

Monday, March 07, 2016 5:35:00 PM  
Blogger kevinEats said...

I'm actually surprised to hear that, as I never pegged you as a KBBQ enthusiast. For more egg trough action, try the new Magal (I have a post forthcoming on it as well).

Monday, March 07, 2016 11:46:00 PM  
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