First Bite: Myung Dong 1st Avenue

mijongMaybe it’s because I’ve been too busy with Thai (Dok Bua, Khao Sarn, Rod Dee, Chilli Duck) or Vietnamese (New Dong Khanh, Le’s, Pho Basil) eateries. But my Korean restaurant roster remains empty, uncharted territory in the culinary landscape of this city. So it was with an eager stomach that I recently descended upon new Korean street-food joint Myung Dong 1st Avenue, where owners Kyungsook and Seungki Lee of Buk Kyung I and II have brought an inspired list of soju cocktails and an extensive menu of stews, noodles, “drinking snacks,” and the requisite bibimbap to the Allston masses.

There’s plenty of room for experimentation here: We loved the seafood and cheese ddok bokghi, a dish of dense, gnocchi-like “rice cakes” served in a sweet-and-spicy, tomato-y sauce, and the thinly sliced beef bulgogi, which comes out on the same rack it’s grilled on, perfectly charred and unbelievably tender.

The fun décor (think wall graffiti and neon-orange stools) adds to the all-around urban vibe. If you’re like me and are among the uninitiated, get ready for a great gastronomic adventure.

Myung Dong 1st Avenue, 90-92 Harvard Ave. Allston, 617-206-3229.