Hawaii’s Newest Korean BBQ Resturant


Brad Angelo

A small selection of sides available at Gen.

Korean BBQ restaurants have picked up in popularity over the past years, especially on Oahu. With the more well-known local BBQ restaurants like Sik Do Rak and Gyu-Kaku, could a new one really find footing here?

Gen Korean BBQ House is a large chain restaurant that originated in California. They currently have 17 separate locations with most of them located in California. They have currently branched out to Texas, Nevada, and Hawaii, with Hawaii being the most recent addition.

The main draw in of Korean BBQ restaurants is the all you can eat meat and the open grill at every table that lets you cook your own food to your preference, and Gen is no expectation. With over 30 different typed of meats to select, it’s hard to not get exactly what you want. Some of the selections include brisket, pork belly, shrimp, and steak. Included in the all you can eat meal is unlimited rice and side dishes like kimchee, salad, and rice paper wraps.

The quality of meat is very good, but not the best. This is probably due to the large size of the restaurant chain. The quality does match the price. Starting at $15.99 for lunch, not all of meats are available. It increases to $26.99 for dinner were everything is open to order. They also have a large selection of alcohol, with their main drinks being mixed soju, a Korean alcohol. You can also sit at the large bar they have if you plan to get a large amount of drinks. Unfortunate, the first week they were open they did yet have their liquor license but that problem has been fixed by now.

They service was also very good, but a little bit in your face. The servers are very nice and ensured they you will have a great dining experience. The servers have been flow to Hawaii from California to ensure this branch has the exact same service as the main land branches. However, depending on your server, they sometimes don’t give you room to breathe. They average restaurant has a waiter check on you about 2 to 3 times a meal, Gen servers will be around every couple of minutes. It’s understandable that they need to check on you if you want to order more food, but it can get a bit much at times.

The look of Gen is very modernized. The tables and walls are a sleek black and silver. Glass cases run through the restaurant, each placed with stylish vases and sculptures. Blue light run through many of the walls, tables, and cases. It has a very hipster look to it.

Gen Korean BBQ House strives to bring a more modernized and California style of Korean BBQ to the islands. Located on the Macy’s side of Ala Moana where Tsukiji’s used to be, Good service, food, and atmosphere are present, all for a decent price. Just be prepared to wait at least an hour for a table.