Restaurant Review: Woomiok

If you’re craving Korean food, Senior Staff Writer Jonathan Zhang has the perfect restaurant to recommend! Tune in to hear his review of Woomiok on Convoy Street.
Restaurant Review: Woomiok
Image by Jonathan Zhang for The UCSD Guardian

After hitting a new bench press PR of 315 lbs in the gym (it was actually 85 but who’s counting), my friends and I decided to celebrate my Herculean accomplishment. We decided a feast at Woomiok was well deserved. Actually, I just decided on Woomiok for everyone. 

Banchan at Woomiok (Image by Jonathan Zhang)

Woomiok prides itself on its traditional Korean cuisine and sits in the heart of Convoy’s Asian food mecca. Nestled within a strip mall, Woomiok churns out Korean classics from seolleongtang (ox bone soup) to haemul pajeon (seafood pancake). Additionally, the inside feels modern yet distinctively Korean with wooden planks adorning the walls similar to that of a hanok, or a traditional Korean house. 

We settled upon the Woomiok special combo — any dish from their “meals” category, a soup of your choice, haemul pajeon, and galbi jjim (braised short ribs). While the sticker price of $119.99 may seem high, the portions are gargantuan and catered to feed six people, or in our case, five college students with voracious appetites. 

Immediately after ordering, banchan was quickly brought out. These are Korean side dishes to be enjoyed with the main meal. Woomiok’s banchan included a medley of various kimchis, lightly stir-fried eomuk bokkeum (fish cake), silky-smooth japchae (glass noodles), and two outstanding dipping sauces. Their dipping sauce was particularly remarkable with a viscosity similar to Chinese Lao Gan Ma chili oil and a complex flavor akin to a more tangy version of ssamjang

Bulgogi Bibimbap at Woomiok (Image by Jonathan Zhang)

We chose the bulgogi bibimbap from the “meals” category as well as the spicy seolleongtang with brisket. The bibimbap was made with heaps of tender flaps of marinated beef, vegetables encompassing the entire produce section of Whole Foods, and a handful of sliced shiitake mushrooms perched on top of a bed of rice. The dish comes in a piping-hot dolsot (stone pot) and is garnished with a sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds and a runny egg yolk cracked smack dab in the middle. While seemingly mundane, the flavors scream “delicious” and “complex.” 

The seolleongtang was liquid gold; they took 24 hours to extract all the goodness from beef bones and oxtails to create their heavenly elixir. They add various spices to make it look fiery red before dropping in fistfuls of thin wheat noodles and slivers of beef brisket. While your mom’s homemade broths may be good, Woomiok’s broth is truly in a tier of its own. 

The haemul pajeon consisted of chunks of shrimp, morsels of sliced octopus, and disorganized splotches of scallion everywhere. It’s similar to an American flapjack but savory and much larger. Paired with their spicy dipping sauce, it reaffirmed my love for Korean cuisine. 

Lastly, the star of the show was undoubtedly the massive cauldron of braised short ribs. We requested cheese on top of it, and the waiter gave us a table-side performance by blowtorching the cheese in front of us. The galbi jjim is composed of huge blocks of fall-off-the-bone short rib smothered with cheesy goodness, squidgy bits of tteokbokki (rice cake), and thick slices of potato all soaking in a hellish dark-red soup. Mixed with warm, fluffy rice, it was a match made in culinary heaven. 


Galbi Jjim at Woomiok (Image by Jonathan Zhang)

Woomiok has set a new precedent in my mind on what “good” Korean food is. Despite the large portions fit for 1.5 NBA rosters worth of people, it is a Convoy must-try. The mantra of “Go big or go home” has never been more true than at Woomiok. 


Cuisine: Korean

Address: 3860 Convoy St Ste.113 San Diego, CA 92111

Rating: 9/10

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About the Contributor
Jonathan Zhang
Jonathan Zhang, Staff Writer
Foodie fanatic and comedy connoisseur.
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  • K

    KeithJun 13, 2024 at 1:12 am

    What a gastronomic adventure! Your vivid descriptions make the dining experience come alive. The details about each dish, from the bulgogi bibimbap to the luxurious galbi jjim, paint a mouthwatering picture of Korean cuisine at its finest. And the touch of humor, like the exaggerated PR and the cheeky decision-making for the feast, adds a delightful charm to your narrative. It’s not just a meal; it’s an experience to savor. Cheers to new records and delicious discoveries!