Over the weekend, I woke up with a strong need for Korean food, but wasn't sure which places would be open for breakfast. I had been thinking about visiting Mapo Kkak Doo Gee for a while after reading about it in LA Times and Midtown Lunch Los Angeles. My Google SMS search wasn't very helpful when I requested the phone number, but Koreans are known to eat full meals at the breakfast hour sometimes and my craving for banchan was so pressing, I decided to take my chances and head over. And lucky me! They were open.
I was hoping for more banchan as pictured in the $5.99 lunch special, but I was alone and not in the mood for being pushy with the middle-aged Korean women servers. I was given a seaweed salad of sorts, a few different kimchis, simmered-in-soy potato and steamed cabbage with a hot soybean dipping sauce. I enjoyed the flavors, which were not heavy handed or underseasoned, and appreciated that they make a real effort with their banchan; a lot of Korean restaurants seem to have an obligatory, but not enthusiastic, approach in that area.
I ordered kimchi jjigae ($7.75), which held a nice surprise in store: dduk (rice cakes)! You can't tell from my picture, but I promise they were in there and enjoyed with gusto. Also, apologies about the photo; I dug in for a while before realizing I forgot to click away (yes, my anticipation was that great). Mapo's is a pretty good version, though I wish there had been more kimchi in the jjigae.
Their menu has lots of dishes I'm eager to try (particularly their fish offerings) and considering the quality level and reasonable prices, I must say that I am their newest devotee. Another breakfast spot to add to my weekend list!
Mapo Kkak Doo Gee (I'm going by the full name version as noted on their Korean signage)
3611 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90020