Gyu-Kaku Burbank has only been open for a few weeks in Downtown Burbank, but already the popular Japanese BBQ chain has a steady stream of customers any night of the week.
Currently only open after 4:00 p.m. for dinner, the restaurant offers large selection of Korean and Japanese favorites prepared and served Japanese style.
On a recent weekday evening, we didn’t have a reservation, so we had to wait about 10 minutes for a table. The interior of Gyu-Kaku is stylish and sleek, with popular music piped in for a club-like atmosphere.
We ordered a wide selection of small plates, including Spicy Addicting Cucumber, Steamed Pork Dumplings, Wakame Seaweed Salad, Cabbage Kimchee, Spicy Tuna Volcano and a side of steamed rice. With the exception of the Kimchee, which was moderately spicy, we found the items marked spicy to have just a mild heat.
The Miso Pork Ramen, while maybe not as perfect as Daikokuya in Downtown L.A. or tasty as Kopan Ramen down the street, was still hearty and delicious.
The stars of the evening’s meal were the Bimbimbap (steak and onion fried rice) and plates to grill – the Primi Kalbi and the Scallops. Prices are not expensive, but there’s not a lot of meat or seafood on the plate, either.
Those used to Korean BBQ style, with plates loaded high with meat, fish and vegetables to grill, will note this difference. However, what Gyu-Kaku lacks in abundance, they make up for in high quality products for the grill.
Everyone in our group remarked on the tender and juicy qualities of our table-grilled Kalbi and scallops. There’s nothing quite like taking a seared scallop right off the grill, letting it cool for a few seconds, and popping it in your mouth.
The Kalbi, cooked to medium, was nicely charred on the outside and absolute perfection in every bite.
The Bimbimbap, served in an extremely hot stone bowl, was mixed by our server and pressed against the sides of the bowl, to carmelize and crisp the rice over several minutes. Truly delicious.
Our server was friendly and knowledgeable, suggesting the excellent Bimbimbap and explaining how Gyu-Kaku does barbecue. Empty plates were cleared away promptly and water glasses refilled regularly. Bathrooms were clean.
Gyu-Kaku Burbank also has a nice Japanese beer and sake list, along with cocktails and wine available.
For excellent food, service and ambiance, Gyu-Kaku Burbank receives a Tops In Town.
Restaurant Info: Gyu-Kaku Burbank is located at 116 S. San Fernando Blvd., Burbank, CA 91502. 818-846-0779. Gyu-Kaku Burbank is open Sunday through Thursday 4:00 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 4:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Gyu-Kaku Burbank receives: Tops In Town
Tops In Town (Outstanding)
On The Marquee (Really Good)
Could Use A Rewrite (Average or Slightly Below)
Don’t Quit Your Day Job (Poor)