Danji: Korean Flavors in Bar Food Style
Hi, Friends! Today, I wanted to share with you the best affordable sit-down midtown lunch spot in NYC: Danji. This place is a godsend amongst the desolation of underwhelming midtown lunch options. I go to Danji about 2-4 times a month because I hold this place too close to my heart a.k.a. my galactic pecs. JK.
For lunch, the restaurant primarily serves several types of Bibimbap, a traditional Korean rice dish with marinaded vegetables, jidori fried egg, and a gochujang spicy sauce. A ton of different types of modern Korean appetizers are available for both lunch and dinner but for dinner, there are more entree options, such as the bossam (braised pork belly with scallions, dehydrated daikon kimchi, and cabbage wrap) or the soy-poached black cod with spicy daikon. Whether you go for lunch or dinner, you won't be disappointed :)
Thanks for reading! I'll probably come back to Danji for dinner sometime soon to do a Part 2!
For our appetizer, we got the Spicy Korean Fried Chicken Wings. A little known fact about Koreans: they really know how to make wings. They use some sort of spicy soy/garlic/opioid seasoning. I could probably eat 493 of these. Danji's wings aren't particularly crispy but they make up for it in explosive spicy and tangy flavor. If you prefer crispier wings, you probably want to go to a different Korean Fried Chicken spot.
Every time I come for lunch, I always get the same thing because I am way too loyal to my Spicy Pork Belly Bibimbap. Located in Hell's Kitchen, its actually got better bibimbaps than most restaurants in Koreatown. For an additional $3, it comes in a sizzling hot skillet. GET THIS. It makes the bibimbap taste approximately 64 times better (don't ask how I came up with that estimate - just trust me on this one).
As stated above, Danji's bibimbap comes with several marinaded vegetables (spinach, carrots, mushrooms, bean sprouts, and cucumbers) in addition to a pile of rich and fatty spicy pork belly. If you refrain from mixing the skillet as soon as it comes to your table, which happens to take a tremendous amount of restraint, the sizzling skillet will continue to toast the rice at the bottom of the pan, forming a cool, crusty layer of rice, also known as socarrat. I love getting this dish because it fills me up but doesn't throw me into a deadly food coma for the rest of the day. Also, its deliciousness just puts me in a good mood.