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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Food Porn: Korean-Style Chinese At Zazang

Posted By on Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 10:51 AM

click to enlarge zazang_overview.jpg

Purveyors of the Korean-style Chinese specialty comfort food known as za zang myun, Zazang (2340 Geary at Baker) is a tiny but charming restaurant plunked down on an indiscriminate block of Geary lorded over by the Kaiser Permanente medical complex. Za zang myun could not-too-imprecisely be called the spaghetti of the east, consisting of a pile of chewy, hand-pulled wheat noodles served swimming in an sturdy, ink-black sauce made from beef broth, black bean paste (hence the color), vegetables and either pork or -- in the popular seafood version -- squid and shrimp. While the color can be off-putting, the sauce is very mellow, which is where, I suspect, the correlation to comfort food comes in. In fact, I usually require a nice big squirt of cock sauce (heh) to amp up the heat level. Also, the price is right: at $4.95, a steaming bowl of za zang myun is one of the better lunch deals in town. And while many Koreans would probably call me crazy for saying this, while I really, really love the namesake dish, it isn't the real reason I go to places like Zazang ... follow the jump to find out the shocking truth!

click to enlarge zazang_pork.jpg

Behold my sweet, fried lover: tang su yuk ($9.95), an overflowing plate of deep fried pork chunks smothered in a perfectly tangy sweet and sour sauce studded with tantalizing pieces of lightly pickled cucumbers, carrots, onion, and pineapple.

click to enlarge zazang_noodles.jpg

Tang su yuk plays the hot high school slut to za zang myun's homely best friend. In a bind, you will always go running back to the friend, but goddamn if the slut isn't a hell of a lot more fun. Yes, in this metaphor you are a terrible, terrible person.

-- Brian Bernbaum

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Brian Bernbaum

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