Trips to Woodbury usually mean dim sum in the car on the ride up and fast food in the food court for lunch. Trips home from Woodbury usually mean tofu chigae up at Fort Lee. The Boyfriend and his parents usually head over to So Kong Dong for some of their infamous soondooboo chigae but they wanted to try something new this time around. This is why we found ourselves trying to locate BCD Tofu House by GPS and almost failing miserably. Tip: You have to drive UP the ramp and into the parking lot. By the time we got out of the car, we already smelled Korean food so we were pretty hooked.
We were seated right away in their very spacious dining room. Here’s one big difference from So Kong Dong – you don’t have to wait 20 minutes for a table and then be squished together with 50 other hungry people. Many Yelp reviewers mentioned cute waitresses, but we didn’t run into any. Liars!
BCD Tofu House serves a large variety of Ban Chans, or side dishes. They had a broccoli-crabmeat side, kimchi, kimchi onions, and pickled carrots. Each patron also got their own small, fried fish! Another major difference between BCD Tofu House and So Kong Dong is the menu. While So Kong Dong only serves chigae and Galbi, BCD Tofu House has noodles, bibimbap, various meats and many appetizers. We still wanted soondooboo so we decided to order two – their Seafood chigae, which features clams, shrimps and mussels, and their Pork chigae ($8.99), since the Boyfriend’s mom doesn’t eat beef. Each entrée order comes with a side of rice, so prepare to be stuffed!
We also ordered a Bibimbap to share – the Boyfriend’s mom loves that they give you the option of ordering each dish with or without beef. We ordered our bibimbap without beef but it was loaded with vegetables – sautéed spinach, shitake mushroom, carrots, zucchini, radish, and egg ($14.99). They leave you to mix it yourself so you can add however much red pepper paste as you want. This was one of the most loaded bibimbap bowls I have ever had!
We also went ordered their Daeji Bulgogi, or spicy pork belly ($16.99). It was delicious! The serving size was huge! The pork was very tender and chewy. Despite the heat from this dish, we all kept eating it because it was so good. I’m not usually a pork eater – I prefer beef over pork- but I couldn’t stop myself from eating it – even when I was full!
The service at BCD Tofu House is kind of the same as So Kong Dong. I don’t see any drastic differences. The waitresses kind of just appear when they need to deliver food and then disappear. The busboys are the ones that clear your table and pour you more water – I saw them more than I saw our waitress. In terms of food, BCD Tofu House definitely has more options but I think So Kong Dong’s chigae is by far more delicious .When you order a mild at So Kong Dong, it really is a mild. When you order a mild (half a pepper icon) at BCD Tofu House, you get chigae that’s very spicy. Even the Boyfriend, who can normally take spice, thought it was too much. We were all contemplating how we would order next time since the next level of spiciness after mild is regular.
If you asked me which restaurant I prefer, I would no doubt tell you So Kong Dong. The service sucks and it’s cramped, but their chigae is as advertised. They also have those heavenly kimchi cucumbers that I absolutely love!