The 9 Best Korean Restaurants In Sydney For 2024
— 6 May 2024

The 9 Best Korean Restaurants In Sydney For 2024

— 6 May 2024
Boss Hunting
Boss Hunting

Among Aussie diners, Korean BBQ might be the mode of cooking that gets the lion’s share of attention but it’s important to distinguish between that and the ethos of more conventional kitchen-to-table Korean restaurants.

The big (and dare we say glaring) difference is that, in KBBQ, diners do a lot of the cookery themselves. Naturally, that’s all part of the fun, but many of the best Korean restaurants in Sydney deal in specialties that arrive at your table ready to eat. We’re talking everything from uber-accessible Korean fried chicken, to a range of nourishing stews or historical specialties like bo ssam.

In that spirit, we’ve compiled a neat little edit of our 10 favourite Korean restaurants (barbeque joints not included) thus far this year.

RELATED: These North Shore Restaurants Serve Some Of Sydney’s Best Japanese

Soul Dining, Surry Hills

Best Korean Restaurants
Address: Suite 2, 50 Carrington Street
Contact: +61 431 437 059
Opening Hours: Monday – Saturday (12 PM – 3 PM, 5 PM – 10 PM)

When people think of upscale Korean dining in Sydney, Soul Dining is a name that tends to frequently come up.

The award-winning restaurant by Illa Kim and Daero Lee has been around since 2018, presenting a decidedly modern take on traditional Korean flavours worked: showcased in inventive dishes that make use of ingredients that are atypical for this national cuisine.

A perfect date night spot, it sports sleek onyx interiors dotted with interesting bottles of red and white wine — all solidly matched to dishes like the gnocchi-esque prawn tteokbokki or claypot rice layered with chunks of toothfish.

Diana, Potts Point

Address: 1/28 Macleay St, Potts Point NSW 2011
Contact: +61 2 8114 9919
Opening Hours: Monday (5:30 PM – 10 PM); Wednesday – Thursday (5:30 PM – 10 PM); Friday – Sunday (12 PM – 3 PM, 5:30 PM – 10 PM)

A venue that is equal parts fun and sophisticated, Diana has fast become a fixture of the Potts Point F&B scene since it opened back in 2020. Its fastidious owner Sammy Jeon is clearly committed to showcasing traditional Korean flavours; yet cleverly incorporates references to Korea’s regional neighbours (hence the occasional Chinese inspiration).

The place is packed with personality, which mostly comes courtesy of the eye-catching art pieces and a discrete PDR space (complete with karaoke).

Various banchan (those delicious side dishes that always precede the arrival of protein at your favourite Korean BBQ place) play a key role at Diana. Order those, plus a few larger dishes for the table and you have the makings of an incredibly solid group meal.

Sang by Mabasa, Surry Hills

Sang by Mabasa is a great Korean Restaurant in Sydney.
Address: 98 Fitzroy St, Surry Hills NSW 2010
Contact: +61 2 9331 5175
Opening Hours: Thursday – Sunday (11:30 AM – 2:30 PM, 6 PM – 10 PM)

A cavalcade of food writers and hospo types argue that Sang by Mabasa is the best Korean restaurant in Sydney — and, for that matter, possibly even Australia.

We leave it to you to decide whether that rings true or not, but it’s hard to argue with the objective quality of the dishes being put out by this diminutive family-run eatery. Despite the artful presentation, many of these are straight-down-the-line evocations of classic Korean home cookery.

As the weather in Sydney starts to plummet, we recommend stopping by for a bite of the bokkeum jokbal (braised, then stir-fried pork trotters) or a broth of Cloudy Bay clams, flavoured with radish and cod roe. Keep an eye on the restaurant’s Instagram for regular updates about its lunchtime specials.

Kobo, Circular Quay

Korean restaurants Sydney
Address: 4 Loftus St, Sydney NSW 2000
Contact: +61 412 955 430
Opening Hours: Tuesday – Saturday (6 PM – 11 PM)

Diners can be forgiven for associating the word omakase with premium Japanese dining: usually big on nigiri (individual courses of sushi) and a couple of interstitial hot dishes, depending on your venue of choice.

However, Kobo has the distinction of being Sydney’s first properly high-end Korean omakase restaurant; and in the time that it has been open, already made quite the impression.

Helmed by Chef Jacob Lee (also of Matkim fame), this cosy 8-seat diner inside the Loftus Lane precinct presents a range of regional Korean specialties — usually tied together using a single locale or cultural theme. In the past, Lee has penned menus dedicated to the produce of Jeju Island and of North Korea (the historic region, not the DPRK).

Our verdict? Kobo is well worth a visit based purely on how different it is versus the majority of Korean cuisine that is available in Australia.

Soul Deli, Surry Hills

Soul Deli is one of the best Korean restaurants in Sydney right now.
Address: Shop 1/212 Riley St, Surry Hills NSW 2010
Contact: N/A
Opening Hours: Monday – Sunday (7 AM – 4 PM)

Brought to Sydneysiders by the same team behind Soul Dining, Soul Deli is a more casual by-day offshoot— opening its doors (on a quiet stretch of Surry Hills) back in 2021.

Dishes like a toasted sandwich loaded with mushroom bulgogi or the much-loved buttermilk hot cakes (served with a side of fiery fried chicken) speak to the venue’s preoccupation with brunchy staples inspired by aspects of Korean cookery.

In addition to the usual array of machine-made coffees, Soul Deli also does a very tidy sideline in traditional Korean teas and flavoured lattes. From the latter category, we’d highly recommend trying the black sesame latte.

Pu Ji Mi, Eastwood

For many, Pu Ji Mi is the best Korean restaurant in Sydney.
Address: Shop 202/62-80 Rowe St, Eastwood NSW 2122
Contact: +61 2 8958 5715
Opening Hours: Tuesday – Saturday (9:45 AM – 9:15 PM); Sunday (9:45 AM – 9 PM)

Over the years, Eastwood has garnered a reputation for its strong community of Taiwanese and Shanghainese eateries. As it happens, the suburb is also home to Pu Ji Mi — one of the best Korean restaurants on Sydney’s Northside.

Located inside a nondescript mall on Rowe Street, the no-frills dining room and plastic menus are a dead giveaway that this eatery is focused purely on delivering massive flavour. A favourite of celebrity chefs in the mould of Dan Hong, Pu Ji Mi’s regulars come here for a range of authentic home-style comforters.

The most popular of these are the bo ssam — fragrant slices of poached pork belly, stuffed into leafy veggies — and raw crab marinated in soy. For us BH staffers though, you can’t go wrong ordering a big bowlful of kalguksu: knife-cut noodles, made fresh daily, and served with a variety of broths to complement the passing of the seasons.

Arisun, Haymarket

Korean restaurants Sydney
Address: Shop 35/1 Dixon St, Haymarket NSW 2000
Contact: (02) 9264 1588
Opening Hours: Monday – Thursday (12 PM – 12 AM); Friday – Saturday (12 PM – 2 AM); Sunday (12 PM – 11 PM)

Established in 1990, Arisun is a no-frills establishment that has set the tone for dozens of casual Korean restaurants that have opened across Sydney in subsequent decades.

With a sprawling venue in Haymarket that is (importantly) open until the wee hours of the morning, this is a great, wallet-friendly option if you’re looking to lick the proverbial stamp and send it with a big group of mates over the weekend.

Repeat customers rave about the venue’s range of signature fried chicken dishes — try a ‘Tasting Platter’ if you want a smidge of everything — and the jjajangmyeon, a distant relative of the ragout-esque Chinese noodle of similar naming convention.

Red Pepper Bistro, Strathfield

Red Pepper Bistro in Sydney is one of the best Korean restaurants you'll find.
Address: 19 Morwick St, Strathfield NSW 2135
Contact: +61 421 662 263
Opening Hours: Monday – Thursday (11 AM – 10 PM); Friday – Saturday (11 AM – 10:30 PM); Sunday (11 AM – 10 PM)

Much like Pu Ju Mi, you’d be forgiven for not having heard of Red Pepper Bistro (that is unless of course, you’re deep into Sydney’s Korean food scene).

Much like some of the best Korean BBQ spots in Sydney, you’ll find this popular eatery out in Strathfield in, inexplicably, a local sports club. Without wanting to be unkind, there is zero ambience to speak of: in fact, this looks like your typical RSL kitchen. No matter, the quality of food here is top-notch.

Seafood dishes are a special recommendation: ranging from the octopus stir-fried in spicy sauce to pan-fried flatfish (served with a side of rice and all the banchan your appetite can muster). If you’re dining in a large group, supplement these bestsellers with any one of Red Pepper’s signature hotpots and you’re good to go.

If you found this list helpful, then consider checking out some of our other Sydney dining guides:

Subscribe to B.H. Magazine

Boss Hunting


Share the article