Shiku - Grand Central Market / DTLA

The folks behind Baroo are back! They’ve been teasing it for awhile, but their followup concept is a departure from the experimental cooking they became famous for, instead featuring casual, homestyle Korean cooking.

Just in a soft launch phase this weekend–with complete family style meals coming next week–I decided to check out the little preview of banchan and pantry goods they were offering for pick up.

Clockwise from top:
Chili Chamchi 고추 참치
Musaengchae 무생채
Naengi Muchim 냉이 무침
Kimchi 김치
Myulchi Saewoo Bokkeum with Walnut 잔멸치새우 호두 볶음

Bangers. Each and every one of them.

I also got a jar of Baroo Yak Gochujang 약고추장, which comes studded with beef. It’s incredibly delicious with pieces of beef scattered throughout.

Baroo (and later Baroo Canteen) was one of my favorite restaurants before closing. I’m so stoked to have Chef Uh’s and Chef Park’s cooking back in my life.

They’re currently offering pick up via pre-order through their website:

https://shikulosangeles.square.site/

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THANK YOU!! I’ve been making due with Whole Foods Sesame Oil this whole pandemic as Chongs is hard to find. :frowning: This has not made me happy, looking to forward to trying his… NOM.

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anybody try the crab they had this weekend?

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Can’t wait to see what else they roll out after the banchan and pantry goods. Nice addition to GCM.

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I agree this is a damn good addition to GCM! I would try this place asap. That banchan looks great! Guys you have to know these guys probably learned a thing or two from Buddhist nun Jeong Kwan

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All the banchan are great, but the Myulchi Saewoo Bokkeum with Walnut is seriously addicting!

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I picked up a crab this weekend. It was phenomenal.

The crab came marinated in a soy sauce base with herbs, spices, peppers, garlic, lemon, etc… It’s broken down by the chef to order with gills and other bits removed so it’s ready to eat.

The crab body meat was very well marinated and I had a great time vacuuming the chambers straight into my mouth. Flesh was firm; super fresh and no off-flavors. Easily a 2-3 heaping bowls of rice item. One could easily spoon the marinade over more hot white rice and finish off another 2 bowls.

The crab innards were equally luscious and rich. There go a few more bowls of rice. Definitely less bitterness than what we usually find in other crabs available in CA (dungeness). Clean.

This was an extremely bonafide and delicious start for this mom/pop stall inside GCM.

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Looks like they did well this weekend. Full menu (and likely preordering) goes up Thursday night.

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doshirak, korean fried chicken, fries, and korean fried mushrooms now available

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Picked up lunch from Shiku today and wow, this new operation is poised to be such a great addition to GCM. I went with the Maekjuk Chicken + fried egg (duh) and every single flavor was spot on. It’s a generous serving too—not only was there a lot of chicken, but with a lot of rice and three banchan in the bowl it’s definitely a meal.

I had a bit of a bag mishap on the walk home so apologies for the sloppy presentation, but TBH everything getting mixed together just made it better/easier to eat.

It’s opening day and as is expected with a new operation, they’re still working out the kinks. They were absolutely slammed (I didn’t get my preorder for 12:15 until just before 1:15) and I could tell there were many others waiting for their orders (both online and in person) as well. They might have been in the weeds from the crush of orders coming in online, where their order time said 15 minutes of prep time even after they had cut off taking new orders so they could get the existing tickets they had already taken care of.

It wasn’t an issue for me to hang out and wait, but it is something anyone else going to pick up food in the first few days should be aware of. They were working super hard and I’m confident they will smooth out any issues soon. I already can’t wait to return.

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As @rlw noted, there was a bit of a wait. I walked through GCM a few times over and there was a consistent line for pickup. It’ll get better over time, I’m sure.

Anyway, I think Shiku absolutely nails QPR with a strong skew towards the quality side.

Being able to get a “greatest hits” style dosirak is great. Each individual item was well-executed and the combo might be able to feed two folks. The pork belly was jaw-droppingly good, kalbi was properly thick and flavorful, and the chicken was excellent too – but I prefer the other two meats a bit more. I also got the fried chicken, which immediately made me want a beer, in a good way. My food was a bit cold by the time I got to it (my fault), but it still held up quite well - something I can’t say about some other Korean spots around town.

Couple notes regarding the banchan selection: Literally any one of the banchan and some warm rice would be a good meal. The myulchi bokkeum is a mind-melter that reminds me of Bengali dried fish preparations and tastes amazing. It’s savory, crunchy, spicy, sweet… and will light up all of your taste buds in one shot.

My current “hack” is to get some good bread from Clark Street, some butter from DTLA Cheese and a deli of the chili chamchi for a quick open faced sandwich.

And of course, the intangibles: Both iterations of Baroo were immensely special for me and there were nights where I’d hang out for hours, ordering the whole menu; or even running in to grab a cookie or kombucha. Kwang and Mina are still as welcoming now as they were then. Absolute gems in this regard, and that makes me so happy.

If this is “day one” for the restaurant (and with the space they have), I am excited to see what the future brings!

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100% the Myulchi Saewoo Bokkeum is absolutely insane.

Don’t want to get too wrapped up in my own hype just thinking about some lunch I ate a few hours ago, but put Shiku on the Best New Restaurants 2021 watchlist.

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I predict Shiku, Holy Basil, and Kaneyoshi. At least for you LA FTC

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shiku x naemo korean bang bang

went opening day and didn’t experience the delays others did, only had to wait a few minutes for my 3pm preorder. maybe they were starting to catch up after turning off their online ordering.

and unless you want to piss off the cars behind you, ignore the curbside pickup instructions that say to park in front of the broadway entrance. with the outside seating area taking up all the parking spots there’s no where to pullover. park on hill st instead.

agree with @rlw and @raihan, the myulchi saewoo bokkeum with walnut is cravable and perfect with a bowl of rice. it is sticky, sweet, savory, and crunchy. the addition of baby dried shrimp take it to a
shiku_tenor

the jinmichae bokkeum with toasted peanut is also very good, a bit spicy and creamy with a pleasant chew.

the kfc wasn’t quite what I was expecting. I thought they would be triple fried wings but was more like popcorn chicken. I should have read the description more carefully.

korean fried pyogo mushrooms
the deep fried shiitake mushrooms were pretty good, crunchy on the outside and a bit soft and chewy on the inside.

gamchil french fries

shiku combo
satisfying and tasty. kalbi was the highlight.

also got some korean snacks and drinks for later.

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adding onto @porkybelly - I didn’t realize that I got the spicy KFC: same chicken preparation, just hit with a glaze of (i’m guessing here) gochujang, extra red pepper and a small amount of clarified butter. good stuff, but probably want to eat this ASAP and not 45 minutes later like a certain guy (points to self, shamefully)

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Each and every one of the Shiku’s banchan is outstanding. Limited quantities are offered each day, and so far it’s been a fairly consistent rotation of dishes. Some may come and go and not all are available every day, but if you have a chance to stop by GCM for any reason, I highly recommend seeing what they have available as you pass through.

And now, a personal power ranking:

Myulchi Saewoo Bokkeum with Walnut 잔멸치새우 호두 볶음

This is the most addicting of the banchan, but it’s close. Salty, umami packed, with a soft crunch from the walnut and a subtle kick from the shishitos, this is one of those good-with-everything dishes that I’d want to have on hand at all times. Mix it into rice, throw it on some vegetables, scoop it out of the tub with my hands—do not skip this.

Jinmichae Bokkeum with Toasted Peanut 진미채 땅콩 볶음

Also crushable, but in a very different way. It’s chewy and creamy, and also has a bit of a punch, but the peanuts give it a more distinct nuttiness. The richness makes it ideal to break up bites with other dishes, but was the first of the tubs to disappear, because I was alternating bites of this while spreading out bites from everything else. If the Myulchi Saewoo Bokkeum is 1A, this is definitely 1B.

Chili Chamchi 고추 참치

I was ready to write this off as another tuna salad, but wow if only every tuna salad was like this. I loved the spiciness and the texture made it perfect scooped alongside a bowl of plain white rice.

Musaengchae 무생채

Another spicy banchan that is quite refreshing and offers a solid crunch. It’s acidity makes it a must for any balanced meal.

Mu Namul 무나물

Whereas the Musaengchae is bright and snappy, this is soft and creamy. I’m not that familiar with the flavor of perilla seeds, where here it’s worked into a dressing, but wow it is tasty. I liked pairing this with the other banchan because it’s mild and soothing flavor was welcome compared to the other more confrontational flavors.

Shredded Potato + Fish Cake 감자채 볶음

While it wasn’t part of the opening menu, the shredded vegetable and fish cake banchan is likely to be a mainstay. It fits in perfectly with the rest of the line up, almost like the goldilocks banchan. It’s a bit creamy, a bit salty, a bit crunchy, and a bit soft. It’s very comforting and while it’s not going to punch you with flavor, that’s part of what makes it a great contrast to all the other vibrant banchan.

Naengi Muchim 냉이 무침

This really shouldn’t be a ranking, because I still really loved this simple dish of shepherd’s purse and perilla seed dressing. The bites seem to be carefully bundled, so that it’s easy to grab with chop sticks and eat your veggies.

Chwinamul 취나물

From my uneducated perspective, this was hard to distinguish from the Naengi Muchim. It’s slightly less creamy because there’s just oil and ground perilla seed, not the full on dressing that the Naengi Muchim gets, but I still found it just as good.

Gim Jaban 김(돌)자반볶음

This seaweed snack is crispy, a bit salty, a little sweet, and reminded me of baked Lay’s potato chips. Its lightness makes it suitable company for some of the other more substantial banchan.

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Wish they were open just an hour longer!

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wanja jeon 고기완자전 - pork patties with chilies, garlic, chives, scallions, aromatics

if I didn’t know any better I would have thought these were bun cha hanoi pork patties. they were a bit less coarse and probably didn’t use a caramel sauce but other than that they were spot on and delicious. I may or may not have eaten this with nuoc mam.

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I also grabbed some of the wanja jeon today and wow they were fantastic. I threw them in the airfryer and they came out perfectly crisp on the outside and super juicy on the inside. They appear to be limited for now but definitely snag it if you can!

When picking up some banchan during the week, they kindly dropped in a container of Mat Doenjang 맛된장, which I’ve been experimenting with (aka basically putting it on everything and eating it by the spoonful). Tonight I stir fried it with some noodles, paired it with the wanja jeon, and put an egg on it. It’s a real knockout. It’s got everything you want–garlicky, salty, spicy–made with their housemade mat ganjang, doenjang, and onion jam. It’s a must get to bring home and punch up whatever you’re making at home.

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Do you have to preorder on tock or can you pick up ban chan if you walk in?