NYC has its fair share of Korean restaurants and its fair share of Chinese restaurants, but what it doesn’t necessarily have is a restaurant devoted entirely to focusing on the unique blend of both cuisines–until now.
The team behind NewWonjo, the oldest Korean BBQ spot in Manhattan, have opened OCTO, and they’re placing the spotlight on Korean and Chinese cuisine.
Nestled in the heart of Manhattan’s Koreatown, the restaurant’s menu nods to the rich history and traditional foundations upon which Korean Chinese cuisine is built. The cuisine dates back to the 19th century, though until now has not yet been widely celebrated in NYC.
OCTO, on the other hand, ensures that time-honored flavors and dishes are an integral part of the menu.
Chef Segun Song, who has previously worked in Chinese restaurants in South Korea, Australia, Singapore, and other locations in Southeast Asia, helms the kitchen.
Song is cooking up dishes such as jajangmyeon, a Chinese-style Korean noodle dish, tangsuyuk, crispy pork with blueberry, dragon fruit, and sweet and sour sauce, peking duck (served multiple ways), and jellyfish salad.
The restaurant also offers a full bar menu, with everything from cocktails and Japanese whisky to wine and soju.
Cocktail highlights include The Spicy Szechuan, made with chili-infused El Tequileno Blanco, agave, szechuan bitters, lime, triple sec, and gochugaru, Lichi-Tini, made with Spring 44, lichi-li, and lychee puree, Mind Your Bee’s, made with jasmine tea infused Bombay Sapphire, fresh lemon, and honey, and the Alpaca-Chino, made with Caravedo Pisco, Vinn Baijiu, fresh lime, lemongrass syrup, egg white, and angostura.
Pronounced as oak-toh, and translating to “good soil” in both Korean and Chinese, owners Steve and Christina Jang wanted to create a place that is more than a restaurant, where guests can experience the memories with food from their childhood and family rituals and foodies can explore elevated authentic Chinese dishes with Korean style.
You can learn more about OCTO on their website here.
📍 1 East 33rd Street