207 Second Ave., New York, NY, 10003
at 13th St.
By antonybcn on 12/4/2007
I am quite a regular at Momofuku Noodle Bar, where I love the food and casual friendly service, so I thought it was time to try Momofuku Ssam with a friend visiting from Europe. What a surprise it was to be treated like total morons by the waitress when we asked some explanations about the menu. I donÂ´t think I should be ashamed not to know what a Ssam, ETC or Offal mean...? Again we were considered retards when the waiter wanted to take away the firsts and we asked him to leave them until we were finished. Ah, and the sake wasnÂ´t brought until our main courses... Luckily the food was great, but the arrogant service spoiled our evening.
By olive_ruth on 3/22/2007
I was very excited to try Momofuku Ssam after the Bruni review in the Times, but left feeling momo-mediocre on the experience. The pickle plate was a bit much (you have to be an unyielding devotee to the kimchi flavor range to find satisfcation here), the pork bun was beautifully seasoned but almost inedibly fatty (visible fat chunks), and the tofu ssam was good, but nothing to write home about. The breat & butter was probably my favorite, though not sure how it fit in with the rest of the menu. Also, the only soda they serve is Dr. Pepper, which is a little bit hilarious--our server told us it's David's favorite. A fun, lively place to meet friends (preferably on a week night when the wait isn't too bad) and hoping my next visit will spark warmer feelings.
By hooperrose66 on 3/21/2010
Waited an hour to get in to this over-rated place because 1 of our 5 person party was running late. Ww had to wait in the next store "milk/cookie bar" for takeout food. When we finally were seated, we had uncomfortable seats with no backs and were jammed together with no space between us. The waiter had no clue what to recommend for first time eaters. The portions were extremely small, eg; 4 ounces of steak or fish for $27 entree. Still hungry after appetizer and entree and drinks. Very rigid - absolutely no substitutions, change to the cooking eg; broiled vs fried and rigid service.
By garbanzo on 2/21/2009
For the first year that Chang switched from the straight ssam concept to the new menu, the restaurant really felt like it was experimenting and pushing some boundaries (along with high-quality food). Then came the accolades, which has created complacency. My last trip there was nothing special -- interesting concepts that were executed in an poor-to-average fashion (lamb tough, fish cold, everything too expensive). Meh. Don't even get me started about the Milk Bar. As a worldwide seeker of sweets, the bar blows and is a huge ego play. Going to try Ko and see if that's where the love currently is.
By garbanzo on 12/31/2006
The ssams, rice bowels and buns are surely tasty, but nothing really outstanding. Looks like they took some of the most popular elements of the other place and added a bit of fast food element to it. This place would kill in Midtown (where there's a lack of fast, tasty lunch joints), but I thought the offerings were a bit spare. Need a few more items and choices (perhaps more pre-fab combos to facilitate diners stepping out a bit). Bar patrons aren't going to an exhibit a Craft-like comtemplation of the ingredients, nor do they have the time if someone's tapping their foot behind them in line. In short, good start, but needs some work.
By lambchops on 9/2/2010
So the pork belly buns are delicious. Great. Otherwise, the menu is literally all or nothing here. The sirloin in broth had absolutely no flavor and the pork sausage with rice cakes was doused in an excessive amount of greasy hot sauce. Others have written about prices being too high and I would agree -- although I don't mind paying for good food, even if portions are small. But good food this is not.
By VictualVoyeur on 11/21/2009
The Bo was unimpressive given the hype, but good compared to standard Korean. At Korean spots, the table is peppered with side dishes- here, there are only four "toppings," two are kimchi, lettuce, and 12 oysters. The only delight came with the dessert, which was creative and delicious. With 7 people, we left wishing we ordered more food. Unfortunately, we weren't given the opportunity to as the service was miserable and insulting. Servers quickly came and left our table barely uttering a word. When we needed something, we had difficulty identifying the inattentive staff who blended in dress with the diners. Questions were met with smugness and unhelpful terse answers. We felt we were an unwanted burden, the food was not incredible; we're not going back.
By glai on 10/21/2008
I've been here (and the noodle shop) many a time and have even had the $200 bo ssam. No doubt, that the food is great, but expensive. When you start to take off the things on the menu that were great and serve it up with a arrogant, condescending, unapologetic attitude, you really do the restaurant a disservice. My girlfriend and I were there this weekend and discovered the rice bowls had been taken off. It seriously put me in a sad state but we stuck it out and ordered the pork buns. Those are still great, but the waiter took the dishes away while we were still eating and acknowledged he did it purposely and gave us attitude when we asked for them back. I've been raving about this restaurant, but now that my favourite dishes have been removed for no reason (that was communicated to me), I won't be coming back because I just cannot take the attitude.
By thekarmabums on 8/18/2009
For $60 per person, it is very easy to have a mindblowing culinary experience in NYC - one that creates memories. Ssam is one of the most underwhelming experiences I've ever had. The food - yes it's good but you can help feeling cheated. I couldn't help but feel that the kitchen was cooking to maintain its hype, NOT leave its customers with a positive, lasting experience. The food is good, but beware the portions are very small. The ingredients are high quality, but isn't it the end result we care about? Our party felt cheated, and the meal itself felt quite soulless. Skip Ssam. Seriously.
By scottpsolomon on 7/18/2010
I ate here once and would absolutely never go back. The "signature dish" of uni with whipped tofu and bubble tea bubbles is one of the most disgusting things I've ever eaten. Every wine by the glass completely sucked, and the place is crowded and noisy. To think people actually wait in line to get into this place and that it gets fawned over on foodie blogs is bizarre "food culture" phenomenon if there ever was one.