It was a picture of a bowl of soup that led me to Han Il Kwan. More specifically, it was the picture by Sean on Take Thou Food that led me to Han Il Kwan. It looked good, and Korean soups are easy on my diet. So when I had time around noon one day, I picked up my daughter and we headed down to Buford Highway and to this restaurant.
It’s roomy and bright, and they use a lot of natural wood, in framing, tables, doors. I like that look, and in general like the appearance of Han Il Kwan inside. Since we were at lunch, we got a lunch menu. They had bento boxes of various kinds, and then a variety of soups. There was soon dubu, and Sean’s yuk gae jang (which I think I had at Royal Tofu house), and there were some others. I wanted something spicy, so I tried the mae woon galbi tang. Regular galbi tang isn’t spicy.
My daughter had the galbi bento box.
The funny thing about the box is that the only identifiably Korean item in the box was the galbi itself. Neither the tempura nor the sushi were ethnically Korean. Fried rice is as much Chinese as anything else. The noodles? Perhaps the noodles are Korean, but noodles are everywhere in Asia. Still, my daughter liked her food.
I really enjoyed the soup. Meats, rich with fats and cartilage I usually don’t get on my diet were combined with vegetables, pepper oils, scallions and some transparent noodles into a simple earthy bliss. I would have happily eaten a second bowl of the stuff but for the diet I am on. Instead we emptied bowls of banchan while enjoying our entrées, and had our waitress coming back and forth for a while.
Verdict: Good looking, roomy, and to my palate, good food. Highly recommended.
Han Il Kwan
5458 Buford Hwy
Doraville, GA 30340-1126