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Fearless Critic restaurant review
DC
Food
Feel
Price
8.7
6.8
$15
Korean
Casual restaurant

Hours
Daily 9:00am–9:00pm

Bar None
Credit cards Visa, MC
Reservations Not accepted

Annandale, VA
4231 Markham St.
Annandale, VA
(703) 916-0006
Dduk Sarang
They’ve got the Korean porridge and oxbone soup to soothe your savage beast

Porridge! It’s not the bland, vaguely buttery mush they served at early-20th century British orphanages anymore. It’s a filling, tasty meal rather like a soupier risotto. It’s also the ideal medium for just about any substance on the planet. Shoe and crawfish? Probably. Buick and rattlesnake? Why not!

Luckily, the combinations here are more digestible (and even tastier) than automobile. The headliner—bar none—is seolleongtang, translated roughly as “beef bone and tripe soup,” and more prominent in the restaurant’s storefront signage (at least in English) than its real name. Marrowy and deep, this is one of the best seolleongtangs around—and one of the best hangover cures, like milky white Jesus Juice. In fact, hangover sufferers fall into one of three camps: the menudo camp, the pho camp and the seolleongtang camp. It is best not to argue with them about which camp they are in, because the next time they are hungover they will throw up in your car in retribution. Ask us how we know.

Tuna with assorted vegetables gives off this slight funky taste that you find yourself missing as soon as you swallow it. There are other things, aside from porridge, like dumplings, which are very good and squirt a little flavorful juice in your mouth at first bite. Who doesn’t love that?

For such a traditional menu, the atmosphere at Dduk (also spelled Dduck, which brings to mind a pantless, hostile cartoon) is strangely modern. Wood-paneled walls host traditional artifacts and a strange, football-shaped metallic lighting track gives off a warm, soft glow. You’ll, of course, be given lots of banchan to nibble on. Kimchi is a touch mild here, but fish cakes are addictive. Fermented eggplant is alluring, in that it’s-kind-of-sick-but-I-can’t-stop sort of way. On the way out, don’t forget the dduk, tasty little rice cakes they sell at the front. They come in all sorts of flavors and have a fun, chewy texture, not at all like our crunchy Westernized diet snacks. You can use them to make amends with your menudo- and pho-eating friends.

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