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Openings and Closings

Soo Woo Japanese and Korean Steakhouse Opens Three New Locations in SoFla (Video)

Look out, there is a new steakhouse in town. Soo-Woo Japanese and Korean Steakhouse, is opening three places across South Florida this month.

The most recently begun location is in Hollywood, and owner Bok An threw a grand opening party on Saturday to celebrate, including a "Gangnam-style dance-off and free lunches to the first 100 guests to show up.

There were giveaways, music, face-painting, free food and even a couple of dignitaries such as Miss Florida USA Michelle Aguirre and Hollywood Commissioner Richard Blattner. 

Soo-Woo is a teppenyaki-style steakhouse, with a flattop grill and a chef to cook your barbecue at any table.  

The first Soo-Woo was founded 15 years ago in Doral. All total this brings the number restaurants to four. When a local restaurant chain opens three locations almost simultaneously, that's kind of a big deal.

The new locations include Hollywood, Pembroke Pines and another in the Kendall neighborhood of Miami-Dade. 
Opening was easier than you'd think. "Once the hardcore items were in place, like the kitchen and the teppenyaki, all I have to do is just the cosmetic work, the drywall, the paint, etc." Soo-Woo owner Bok An.

The interior concept is modern and the cuisine is authentic. The Japanese menu emphasizes seafood with sushi, sashimi, tempura, ceviche and calamari. The sushi rolls are numerous, too many to list. There is seafood and lots of steaks.

Entrees run from chicken teriyaki ($11.95) with a choice of rice and soup or salad, to Surf n' Turf ($32.00) served with a certified Angus New York strip steak along with a 6-ounce steamed lobster tail and stir fry vegetables.

Japanese cuisine accounts for the majority of the menu. Then there is the Korean menu which includes Galbi Gui ($29.95), a broiled tender beef short rib marinated in garlic soy sauce, thick-cut Kurabuta pork belly ($19.95) and Dak Gui ($17.95), broiled boneless chicken in spicy garlic sauce. 

Between the Japanese and Korean cuisine, what is the difference exactly? The difference is night and day, says An. 

"They are similar in terms of basic ingredients, but Japanese food is bland, mild and not very flavorful," An says. "Korean is spicy and it sparkles all over. Lots of marinade. Even vegetables are marinated."

However the Japanese tend to mimic Korean food on some level, except they package and market their product a little better, according to An. 

For instance, Kim Chi (fermented cabbage) is originally a Korean dish, but the Japanese were able to make a sauce out of it and sell it. 

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David Minsky is U.S. Navy veteran and Tulane graduate who has experience reporting on stories from California, South Florida, and the Deep South. He also won some journalism awards. Email or tweet David with story tips and ideas.
Contact: David Minsky

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