The Seoul of the South
Dan Moo Ji
Perhaps one of the more popular Korean food trends is boon-shik, also known as snack foods that are often served from street carts and tiny mom and pop storefronts throughout South Korea. Recently, Gwinnett has seen a boom in these types of restaurants that serve everything from sushi-style rolls to a variety of topped rice dishes.
The original book-shik goes back to a small store tucked into the Nukoa Shopping Center on Satellite Boulevard. Dan Moo Ji,which is a type of pickled radish, represents one the earliest and best boon-shik shops in Georgia. Starting a small space, the restaurant has grown in size approximately doubling in square footage to keep up with growing demand and popularity.
The first thought upon entering Danmooji is that it is a youthful and fun place. Colorful decorations adorn the walls highlighted with cute cartoon characters and playful designs on everything from the counters, menus, and even the storefront's logo.
Dan Moo Ji offers a variety of Korean snack foods. One of the most popular is ddukbokki, a spicy rice cake dish with vegetables egg, and fish cakes. They also serve a version with ramen noodles called rabokki for those wanting a boost of carbs.This dish is usually paired with kimbop, the seaweed wrapped roll that is stuffed with everything from bulgogi to tuna salad. Many places make kimbop, but the staff at Dan Moo Ji is widely considered to be the best. Also, there is an awesome fried pork cutlet dish called donkatsu. This dish is a thick pork cutlet breaded, fried, and served with a light cabbage slaw and pickled radish. All of this delicious food is washed down with complimentary fish broth that is meant to sipped throughout the meal.
The idea behind boon-shik is akin to America's fast food. These dishes are meant to be quick and inexpensive. Very popular among students, it is very common to see families with children in tow. Over time parents started to enjoy these foods with their kids, and now it is just as common to see a group if adults enjoying these snacks, particularly with today's fast paced lifestyles.
The lunch hour rush is packed so be sure to get there early and grab a seat. With rolls starting at $3.00 and a few sides plus the free soup, it is easily one of the best values around Gwinnett. If you have a bit more time, I definitely recommend some of the larger dishes, but either way you will leave full and happy.