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The seoul of New Malden: the best out-of-town Korean food

By Celia Plender
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Celia Plender finds barbecued meats, pungent pickles and unusual desserts in this Korean part of town.

New Malden is no beauty, but nor is it your average south-west London suburb. It’s home to the largest Korean community in Europe, and boasts some of the best (and often cheapest) Korean eateries in the capital.

For barbecue, I head to Korea Garden [1] (73 Kingston Rd). It looks like a tatty takeaway from the outside, but the dishes will impress. Cooked over glowing charcoal, slices of succulent belly pork and beef rib are infused with a satisfyingly smoky flavour. Their free side dishes, including kimchi pickles, are almost as memorable as the main meal.

Burlington Road is my favourite spot for a Korean butcher, a baker and...no, not a candlestick maker, but a restaurant with plenty of classics. Jee Cee Neh [2] (74 Burlington Rd) serves spicy hotpots filled with braised meats or fish and chewy sweet potato noodles stir-fried in sesame oil with beef and vegetables (japchae).

For the full Asian supermarket experience, get the rest of your ingredients at Korea Foods [4] (Unit 4-6, Wyvern Industrial Estate), which stocks anything from pickles to cooking pots and takeaway kimbap sushi rolls. 

The place I dream about when I’m in the mood for Korean food is one train stop away in Raynes Park. Cosy Cah Chi [5] (34 Durham Rd) is famous for its excellent homemade blood pudding stuffed with cellophane noodles - served spiced and sautéed, in slices with salt, or in a hotpot. If that sounds too much, there’s plenty else to try. Staff are happy to talk you through the menu and they’re yet to recommend me a duff dish. 

Top tip: Sink your teeth into irresistible sticky rice doughnuts at Hyun’s Bakery [3] (94 Burlington Rd).

Get the train to New Malden from Waterloo: it takes about 20 minutes.

Take a look at London's best Korean restaurants.

Illustration: Matthew Hams

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