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All Reader Reviews of...

Momofuku Ssäm Bar

207 Second Ave., New York, NY, 10003
at 13th St.
212-254-3500

Avg. Rating

6
Food: 7
Service: 5
Décor: 6
"Mixed Reviews"

Average Reader Rating on a Scale of 10.

50% would go back.

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A Korean MacDonalds?

By garbanzo on 12/31/2006

  • Overall Rating: 6
  • Food: 7
  • Service: 5
  • Décor: 7
  • Yes, I would go back!

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.

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396 out of 907 people found this review helpful.

Meh.

By olive_ruth on 3/22/2007

  • Overall Rating: 7
  • Food: 7
  • Service: 7
  • Décor: 7
  • No, I would not go back!

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.

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394 out of 872 people found this review helpful.

killer sweetbreads

By deborah on 3/26/2007

  • Overall Rating: 8
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 7
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

Crab Claws w/ yuzu mayo - sweet, pristine and refreshing. I could eat the mayo straight. Country ham sliced think like proscuitto in a good size portion. Also had killer sweetbreads with grilled crunchiness on the outside. I could have had seconds and thirds. The momofuku ssam is the best Korean burrito ever - sweet, spicy, savory, tart - perfect for a freezing night in the EV. Not that you have to worry about it now, but the night we were there, it was about 10 degrees out and we had to wear our coats while dining.

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333 out of 787 people found this review helpful.

10 for food - 0 for service

By antonybcn on 12/4/2007

  • Overall Rating: 7
  • Food: 10
  • Service: 1
  • Décor: 8
  • No, I would not go back!

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 don´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 wasn´t brought until our main courses... Luckily the food was great, but the arrogant service spoiled our evening.

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155 out of 284 people found this review helpful.

Ego?

By madelyn914 on 12/24/2007

  • Overall Rating: 8
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 5
  • Décor: 9
  • Yes, I would go back!

My husband and I are huge fans of Dave Chang. Since Momofuku first opened, we have seen him rise to the fame that he deserves. Admittedly, his food is awesome. But, as of late, it is unfortunate that it seems his ego has overtaken his business sense. What we loved about Ssam bar is that you could go there and spend as much or as little as you want. You can go all out on crazy ingredients (the pigs head is great), or just chill with a Ssam. Recently, we visited because we were craving the Momofuku Ssam (listed on NY Mag's popular items). We were disappointed to find it had been removed from the menu - the waiter told us the kitchen just got tired of making it, and that it probably won't be back on. Dave, why take off one of your most popular items that keeps loyal devotees coming back? The screw-you attitude is cute now, but will eventually get old when those paying to keep your restaurants open start to feel slighted.

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168 out of 314 people found this review helpful.

NY Mag ruined it for me

By junipur on 1/15/2008

  • Overall Rating: 3
  • Food: 3
  • Service: 1
  • Décor: 5
  • No, I would not go back!

After hearing so much about the Ssam Bar (especially in MY Mag) I was looking forward to trying it. But the food was mediocre, expensive and not very innovative. We had short ribs drowned in a pot of thick gravy and the hanger steak ssam, cheaper and better in any number of less trendy korean restaurants. To top it off, there was a photo shoot going on while we were eating. The annoying strobe light effect of the constant flash bulbs did not help the ambiance, nor did the mouthy lighting assistant who pretended to ignore our complaints while she kept flashing away directly in front of us as we tried to eat our meal. Then, it turns out it was this very mag doing the shoot. (First you convince me to try a restaurant, then you ruin the already mediocre meal. Nicely done NY magazine - remind me to cancel my subscription. You guys are the worst.) Overrated. Overhyped. I'd rather go to korea-town and get the real deal. "Momofuku Ssam, the extra S is for Sucks".

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139 out of 294 people found this review helpful.

So Good!

By connect on 5/16/2008

  • Overall Rating: 10
  • Food: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

My girlfriend and I ordered the prix fixe tasting menu at Ssam Bar and I've never had so much delicious food! The staff was really nice and explained everything as it was put in front of us. They also checked on us constantly to make sure we were all content. The only problem was that the portions for each course were fairly large so by the time we got to the pork shoulder main course we were stuffed! I really enjoyed my meal and would go back in a second.

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69 out of 124 people found this review helpful.

As a Korean...

By wasabininja on 7/15/2008

  • Overall Rating: 7
  • Food: 7
  • Service: 7
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

I've had my fair share of Bo Ssam in my life including from the motherland and i have to say that momofuku is a bit of a toss up. Taste wise, it's delicious, fresh, and dare i say comparable to home. But the one major problem i couldn't get myself to swallow however, was the price. Maybe it's just me, but knowing that i could eat the exact same thing in Ktown with twice the quantity and half the price made it hard for me to accept this place. The pork buns were delish, as well as everything else i had, it's just that i'm not made of money and i just don't think nice decor and good service (in english) justify the price. Food, decor, service, is all great and it's definitely a place i would take non-korean friends as a means to introduce Korean cuisine in a less intimidating setting; and i appreciate david chang's efforts for that reason exactly. But to those who know what they want in a bo ssam, go to ktown...and get a bottle of soju while you're at it.

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104 out of 182 people found this review helpful.

Eating succulent dishes while listening to The Pixies

By ecasey22 on 8/18/2008

  • Overall Rating: 9
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 9
  • Décor: 6
  • Yes, I would go back!

The value you get for this top quality of food is a bargain to say the least. Recommended dishes - hamachi sashimi, lamb entree, shrimp in watermelon broth.

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98 out of 199 people found this review helpful.

Retire the attitude, bring back the burritos and the rice bowls!

By glai on 10/21/2008

  • Overall Rating: 5
  • Food: 8
  • Service: 1
  • Décor: 4
  • No, I would not go back!

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.

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108 out of 222 people found this review helpful.

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