Gyenari, Culver City
Downtown Culver City is a hidden gem in the midst of Los Angeles. I’ve come here before to eat at Tender Greens and Akasha, but never to Gyenari. Situated in the heart of Downtown Culver City, Gyenari is hard to miss and the indoor decor takes you away from the bustling streets of Culver City and into a modern and hip lounge/restaurant. They had large booths for cooking the meat at the table, or you could opt for a table without the grill. Upon looking at the menu online, I immediately knew this was a wallet friendly place for lunch. Their endless variety of lunch specials range from an array of lunch platters of different kinds of meat to pulled pork sandwiches to burgers.
They started us off with the traditional Korean side dishes you would normally get at a Korean BBQ restaurant. Ours included bean sprouts, potato salad and of course, kimchi. I can go through these little plates of food like no other (go to a Korean BBQ restaurant with me, and you’ll see). Not only was the staff attentive to our large group, but the managers also came out constantly to check on us. The owners are not only greeting people, but also bussing tables as well.
Gyenari boasts a large selection of lunch platters that come with Rice, House Salad, Japchae, Assorted Tempura, Fruit, and Banchan. I was in the mood for something spicy, so the waiter suggested I order the Spicy Seoul Chicken-Free Range Chicken, Marinated in Spicy Sambal Sauce
When the food arrived, I was blown away by the sheer amount of food I had in front of me! All this for less than $11?! Loved the crispy fried tempura and japchae. Overall, great lunch deal will be back soon to try more of their specials.
We weren’t going to order any dessert since we were all stuffed from lunch, but the Green Tea Doughnuts sounded way too tempting to pass up. Fresh, hot doughnuts made to order with a buttermilk raspberry dipping glaze and Ghirardelli® chocolate sauce. We decided to order a flight for the table and ended up butchering up those poor donuts into little pieces so everyone could try a piece with the two types of dipping sauce. Although, I wouldn’t classify these as your traditional donuts because of the texture, they were fluffier and more cake-like. Delicious when dipped in the raspberry sauce and melted chocolate. What doesn’t taste good with chocolate?
This is the place to go for great happy hour that doesn’t end until 8PM. The bar food is around $4-6, consisting of sliders, mandu, salads, saam with beef, wings, ribs, and even kimchee fried rice and well drinks/beer are $3. You can’t beat these happy hour prices, seriously. Cheers to great company and new friends!