I had recent dermatitis skin flare ups. So I looked online to see what helps diet-wise. I’ve suffered most of my adult life with dermatitis, so I’m surprised I’ve just looked it up. A found a lot of sites recommending fermented foods like kimchi and sauerkraut for their probiotic (good bacteria) benefits. So with my week off, I took the bus in front of my apartment towards Woodside, Queens to try this Korean spot I found on Yelp –Sik Gaek.

Cool looking place. Kinda reminds me of the Japanese spots on St Marks like Kenka.

Once they sat me down, they started the gas stove at my table. It confused me because I hadn’t ordered. But then soon brought over a pan and cracked an egg on it. Brought over complementary kimchi, rice noodles with hard boiled egg and a glass of hot water/rice. Can someone tell me if I’m supposed to drink that? Or what do I do with it? It tastes like hot water with rice. The kimchi was good and crunchy.

They got a several dishes on the $5.99 lunch special. A really good price. I went with the Doenjang Soup (fermented soybean paste with mixed seafood), which should also be good for the flareups. Dang, awesome soup! It had shrimp, clam, mussel, squid and a little baby octopus. The broth tasted great.

I had my food with a Coors light. But kept staring at the Soju posters all over the place. So I rang the service buzzer on my table for the bottle with the hot chick on it. The waitress said it was the lightest one. Shit. It still had 19.5% alcohol and was the size of my Coors light. This soju was easy going down. I was a big boy and finished it all.

A table of five sat next to me and ordered the Fresh Lobster Seafood Hot Pot. A huge plate of clams and seafood came out with a fresh lobster cut in half on top. The fucking lobster was still moving …both halves. The top half crawled off the plate onto the table. That was the most awesomely bizarre food thing I’ve seen in person. When it was all cooked, one of the claws was clamped onto some of the squid.

I read on Yelp, they do the same thing with Fresh Octopus. It comes out squirming while it’s cooking in front of you on your table. I want to do that.

I really like this place. The food was great. They gave me extra kimchi at no charge (…that shit is like $5-7 for a small container at my local vegetable store). Also complementary cucumber juice at the end of my meal.

Sik Gaek – 49-11 Roosevelt Ave. Woodside, NY 11377

About The Author

Jason Lam

Food blogger since 2008. Hair model since 2003.

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