Anju’s Patio Reopens Offering Four-Course Tasting Menu

Washingtonian’s #1 best restaurant is reopening their patio tomorrow, and we couldn’t be more excited.  They’re offering three time slots (5-6:45PM, 7-8:45PM and 9-11PM) for their four-course tasting menu, and reservations can be made online through resy.

It’s only $60 per guest (with an optional beverage pairing for an additional $30), and they’re giving you an obscene amount of food so expect to get serious bang for your buck.  For your first course, you choose between their dosirak salad, yukhoe, and bul guksoo.  Their yukhoe’s, hands down, one of our favorite dishes there.  It’s Korean beef tartare made with pine nuts and frozen pear, tossed in a delicious sesame dressing that’s then garnished with lotus chips.

anju yukhoe

If you want to start with something lighter, the dosirak (translates to lunchbox in Korean) salad is a solid option.  It’s summery as can be with its bibb lettuce, strawberries, corn, and avocado, and it comes with a sweet dressing that’s made from yuja, a citrusy fruit that looks like a small grapefruit.  Koreans love to enjoy it as tea, but it’s also used in desserts like hwachae.

The bul guksoo was one of the many takeout specials chef Angel came up with during quarantine.  We haven’t had the pleasure of trying this yet, but we love all things spicy so we have no doubt we’ll fall head over heels in love at first bite.  Bul means fire in Korean so we hope you can handle heat!  Chilled noodles with spicy chili dressing, seasoned ground beef and tomatoes?  Where do we sign up?

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bul guksoo anju

Onto the second course, and this one’s a doozy because 2 out of the 3 dishes listed are favorites of ours.  Choose between their ridiculously tasty mandu and their obscenely yum chikin.  Juk’s also an option, but we haven’t had that yet…and we love their mandu and chikin too damn much to even consider it, at least for now.

mandu anju

Mandu means dumpling in Korean, and damn, these babies are straight fire.  Stuffed with an incredible pork and kimchi filling, they come with a nomtastic soy sesame dipping sauce.  And their fried chikin?  Just take all our money.  Easily the best Korean fried chicken we’ve ever had, and that’s saying a lot because we’ve been to Korea on several different occasions.  Glazed with gochujang and white BBQ, this is nothing short of a flavor explosion that’s fried to absolute to perfection.  Each bite will have your tastebuds rejoicing.

korean fried chicken anju

Not sure about either of those dishes?  We hear great things about their juk even though we unfairly cast it aside earlier.  Juk is Korean porridge, and Anju makes theirs with tomatoes, roasted zucchini and pecorino.  It’s a savory dish that tastes like love so if you want something that will warm you up, you know what to get.

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juk anju

Who’s ready to learn more about their third course?  For this, you choose between 3 massive mains:  their ssam platter, their saengsun gui, and their palace ddukbokgi.  Their ssam platter comes with seared galbi, bibb lettuce, perilla leaves and ssamjang.  Galbi’s one of THE most popular Korean proteins out there, and it’s beef short rib that’s marinated in a sweet and savory sauce.  The lettuce and perilla leaves are for wrapping!

ssam board anju

So here’s how you enjoy ssam like a pro.  Put a piece of lettuce/perilla leaf in your palm and stick a piece of meat, some rice and ssamjang in it before wrapping it up into a bite sized morsel of goodness.  Then sit back and enjoy your ensuing foodgasm.

Saengsun means fish in Korean, and for this, they pan fry a beautiful branzino filet and serve it with braised radish in a scrumptious yangyeomjang aka soy garlic sauce.  If you’re big into fish, this is the perfect dish for you.  The flavors are out of this world, and you’ll absolutely love enjoying it with a warm bowl of rice.

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And last but not least, their palace ddukbokgi.  If you’ve had this nomtastic rice cake dish before, you’re probably wondering why the color isn’t red.  Although this has been a staple in Korean cuisine since the 1800s, the popular gochujang-based sauce came much, MUCH later.  It was traditionally made with a soy based sauce for the royal court, hence the name palace ddukbokgi.  Expect exquisitely chewy wok roasted rice cakes served with wild mushrooms and sweet lotus root.

ddukbogki anju

No meal’s complete without dessert, which is why you get to choose between lemon pound cake and subak hwachae to finish dinner off strong.  Both are new so we can’t comment on taste, but chef Angel’s sweets are always fantastic so we have no doubt these will be amazing as well.  The former comes with a rum glaze that’s topped with summer berries and served with a yakult gelato, which the latter’s a buttermilk panna cotta that comes with watermelon ice and strawberries.

panna cotta anju lemon pound cake anju

Which sounds yummier to you guys?  Let us know by leaving a comment below and make sure you stay tuned for fresh new content coming your way.  We update Monday-Thursday and Saturday so check back often, friends.  For more on DC food, browse this tab!  Until next time, Nomsters.  Happy eating!


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