Last week I went to Hanjan. I’ve been meaning to go for a while but never had an occasion where I had to venture to the South side. We had just picked up Jenn’s friend from the airport and decided to grab a bite to eat on the way back and decided on Hanjan.
It’s located on 99th street and 37th avenue, right beside Izakaya Tomo. They offer a variety of Korean fare from B Bim Baab, Korean BBQ, and Korean soups, but definitely has more of a modern feel to everything. We opted to get a bunch of different dishes to share. They also just placed second in Avenue for best late night, so we went for one of their cocktails. The venue is very spacious with an upstairs dining area and booths/tables throughout. They have hanging lights and have very hip and modern decor inside.
For banchan (Korean appetizers that come before the meal), they had pickled radishes, kimchi, some sweetened mashed potatoes, bean sprouts, and rice. Overall, pretty standard. I’ve never had the sweetened potatoes served mashed but overall it was not bad. Good to nibble on in between bites and to compliment the dishes.
First we had their Dduk Bokki. This is rice cakes cooked in a spicy sauce with fish cakes and vegetables. This was pretty standard. The texture of the rice cakes was nice and firm and the sauce had a good flavour. There was a generous amount of fish cakes and overall a pretty good dish and easy to share.
Next was the Bossam. These are lettuce wraps which come with finely cut pork belly simmered in herbs, and served with garlic, radish kimchi, pickled radish, and soybean paste. This was a very generous portion! Definitely more than enough to feed 2 people if you were to just get this dish, and plenty for 4 if you were sharing everything. The flavours were really good and very enjoyable to eat.
Next we had their Budae Jjigae. This is an army-inspired stew made with sliced sausages, spam, rice cakes, and ramen noodles. This dish has been increasing in popularity in Edmonton. I see tons of people making home-version of this dish. Overall, pretty enjoyable but kind of lacked any “wow-factor” for me. I think I would have preferred to eat some of their other dishes or stews.
Lastly, we had their Korean Fried Chicken. This is a fair portion for $18. It was very crispy and light. Next time I might request for some of their sweet and spicy sauce to dip with, but overall very good chicken, and along the same level as the other Korean Fried Chicken in the city.
Overall, I enjoyed my time at Hanjan. Everything is modestly priced, and very reasonable when ordering in a group. With everything, plus our pitcher of drinks, it came to ~$100 before tip, which isn’t too much when split between 3-4 people, especially considering the alcohol. As the night went on, it got a little bit more busy. Definitely a great place to go to, with a cooler vibe than most of the other Korean restaurants in Edmonton.