Guide to Stockholm's best Korean restaurants
Updated 12 Nov 2018
Sushi, Thai food, Vietnamese spring rolls and pho are all well and good, but for anyone who loves Asian flavours Korean food is a must. For a long time, the rest of the world has wondered at South Koreans' long life expectancy and attributed it partly to their love of fermented and pickled vegetables. Kimchi, bulgogi and bibimbap - if you haven't already discovered Korean cuisine it's high time! We've rounded up the best Korean restaurants in Stockholm for you, well-established neighbourhood favourites and modern newcomers alike.
Sweden's first Korean restaurant
Arirang opened in 1975 on Luntmakargatan and is the first Korean restaurant in the country. It's still there, run by the same woman who started it, but these days she's joined by her sister and her two daughters. The atmosphere is always familiar and friendly; partly as the restaurant itself is cosy, but also because of the food, which is typical Korean home-cooking and served so it's easy to share. If you can't get enough of the delicious flavours, you can take home one of their cookbooks, which combine the principles of Korean cooking with favourite recipes.
Luntmakargatan 65, Vasastan
Seoul meets Scandinavia
Take a taste trip to Seoul at Madam, just a few steps away from Björns trädgård park. The restaurant is run by a Swedish chef who has lived in, and is influenced by, the Korean capital. He focuses on authentic dishes (and drinks) in pared-back, Nordic surroundings.
Tjärhovsgatan 5, Södermalm
Local restaurant in Vasastan
Who doesn't like well-cooked food prepared with love? That's exactly what they serve at the neighbourhood restaurant Korea House by Norrtull. You'll find most Korean favourites on the menu, everything from nokdu chun (vegetable fritters) under the starters, to bibimbab and stir-fried dishes. If there are at least two of you, you can also order a hot pot which is served and prepared at the table. There's also a dish of the day for under a hundred kronor every weekday.
Ynglingagatan 17, Vasastan
In the middle of the Korean cluster
The block around Sveavägen has become a real cluster when it comes to Asian, and not least Korean, food. As well as Arirang there's also Koreana on Luntmakargatan, where you can eat bibimbap and bulgogi at bargain prices. There's almost no end to the different ways of making the Korean national dish kimchi, and at Koreana they proudly serve their own homemade version.
Luntmakargatan 76, Vasastan
Korean street food
In 2016 Kimchistan opened up its doors in the Hötorgsskrapan skyscraper on Sveavägen, serving Korean and central Asian cuisine-inspired street food. The guy behind Kimchistan is Ikram Ibragim, who used to run Smakhuset on Hötorgsterrassen. The positive response he got to the Korean dishes they served there inspired Kimchistan, with its authentic Korean flavours and rustic cooking methods. There's something for everyone on the menu, and you can ask for most dishes to be prepared just the way you like them.
Tegnérgatan 18, City/Vasastan
From mandu to bulgogi
"What? It must be a typo?" you may be thinking now, but the answer is no - there really is yet another Korean restaurant on Luntmakargatan. Restaurang Kimchi has an extensive menu and is open for both lunch and dinner every weekday. If you want to go all-in on Korean flavours, try their five course set menu at dinner.
Luntmakargatan 95, Vasastan
Korean fine dining in Swedish
What happens if you combine fine dining, street food, Korean flavours and French influences (!) with Scandinavian ingredients and place all of them together in a charming little spot on Södermalm? You get Nook. Here, the flavours are in full focus and the resulting dishes would convert even the the most sceptical food critic. With an exciting menu and extremely reasonable prices, Nook is a must for anyone who appreciates and wants to try innovative fusion food with Korean elements.
Åsögatan 176, Södermalm
On the corner of Åsögatan and Västgötagatan on Södermalm you'll find Restaurang TWO, which has found its niche making street food-influenced lunches and dinners with Japanese and Korean flavours. The menu is unmistakably influenced by both countries, with dishes ranging from sushi and yakuniku to chuck burger with Korean coleslaw. All the food at TWO is made from organic, natural ingredients.
Åsögatan 102, Södermalm
Inspired by a gastronomic province
The key to success with Korean food is finding the balance between hot and mild, clean and spicy - and it's achieved by using the main ingredients garlic, sesame oil, chili and soya, among others. The restaurant Nam Kang on Birger Jarlsgatan uses this flavour balance as a starting point when serving dishes with their roots in the Gyungsangnam-do province of their homeland South Korea. They also have an extensive drinks selection, including rice beer and Korean rice liquor to go with your food.
Birger Jarlsgatan 38, City/Östermalm
In the basement a stone's throw from Vanadisplan you'll find Go Choo, a small restaurant serving authentic Korean food and Japanese sushi. The setting is somewhat uninspiring, but the food tastes just as it should. Grab a table or take the food home with you. If you want to visit at lunch time, the dish of the day costs just under a hundred kronor and is usually a classic Korean dish.
Upplandsgatan 78, Vasastan
Although meat doesn't usually take centre stage in Korean cuisine (it's more of an accompaniment to the vegetables), Korean BBQ is popular, both in Korea and internationally. Pong, near Hornsberg, has drawn on this popularity, offering BBQ grilled at the table in the evenings. You order different ingredients per 100g and get sauces and vegetables which are then prepared at your table. As well as dinner, Pong is open for lunch every day and weekend brunch.
Lindhagensgatan 120, Kungsholmen