One of the more famous all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ restaurants in “Atlanta” (Duluth actually) is the ever-popular restaurant Iron Age. A visit at any time of day is bustling, but especially during dinner hours and all the way up to 2am. Yes, if at 1am you get a hankering for endless amounts of beef brisket or pork belly, Iron Age is open and waiting! That being said, you will find the ambiance to be loud, crowded, and a bit chaotic. But I suppose it’s all a part of the Iron Age fun.
When I told James we were going to eat Korean BBQ for a friend’s birthday dinner, he might have done a happy “bring on the meat” dance. Being a huge fan of red meat and grilling, he was beyond excited. Each day leading up to the outing would bring a new proclomation of joy and rapture until finally, the day had come.
Janet, the birthday girl, chose 678 (육칠팔), a relatively new Korean BBQ joint in Duluth. It was James’ and my first time there; we were not disappointed. (Oink!)
678 Korean BBQ Restaurant
3880 Satellite Blvd
Duluth, GA 30096
A chain restaurant from Korea, it was created by Gang Ho-Dong (강호동), a man of apparently many talents including sumo wrestling, acting, and making people laugh. (He’s a popular comedian and emcee in Korea.) You are immediately greeted by his chubby visage via large posters and signage upon entering the restaurant. Here’s a particularly entertaining clip of Ho-Dong getting beat up by hottie Hugh Jackman.
Hugh … yummy. Oh what? Where was I …
Each table top comes with a charcoal (not gas) grill to cook your choice meat right in front of you. Servers will come and man the grill for you but prepare to do some of your own grilling, especially when it gets busy. Grills are flanked by egg and scallions, cheese corn, red pepper soybean sprouts, and kimchi of course! Other side dishes (banchan) include an assortmeny of greens (red leaf, perilla, steam cabbage, green peppers, and cucumbers), lettuce salad, pickled radishes, raw sweet potatoes, and roasted soybean paste. Courses and all-you-can-eat options also come with complimentary soup and noodles.
Tip: The side dishes will be replenished as long as you keep asking the server for refills. So don’t be shy and ask for more! We may have gotten 4 or 5 refills … on everything. No shame.
A meal at 678 will set you back about $20-$30 bucks (excluding lunch specials). It’s a bit steeper than some other Korean BBQ establishments, but I felt like the quality of the meat, complimentary side dishes, and service we experienced justified the price point. If you’re looking for more affordable Korean BBQ options, you might want to try Iron Age down the street or Kimchi House on Buford Highway. I might give a slight edge to Honey Pig over 678 simply because I am a huge fan of the fried rice that they create for you at your table. However, 678’s complimentary kalgooksu (“knife” noodles) at the end of our meal was a near worthy adversary. And while I would never come with my two young children, 678 does have a separate play room just for kids!
So if you’re really hungry, really like meat, and want to have some kimchi with your bbq, give 678 a shot. Go with a few friends and bring some febreeze (you’ll need it after!) to experience it for yourself.
Where do you prefer to get your Korean BBQ fix in Atlanta?