On Wednesday, August 16, Kijung Hospitality Group opens the Bay Area location of Baekjeong, the destination for Korean barbecue, at Westfield Valley Fair in San Jose. The name “Baekjeong,” derived from the Korean term for “butcher,” reflects the brand’s commitment to sourcing exceptional, high-quality meat cuts and premium ingredients.
Over the past decade, CEO Michael Chon set out with a clear vision to establish Baekjeong as the benchmark for Korean barbecue and hospitality in the U.S. with a mission to integrate the concept into the fabric of American dining. The Baekjeong experience delivers an inviting and convivial atmosphere that serves as a conduit for Korean and Korean American culture in the U.S. With the brand’s rapid expansion to locations in Southern California, New York and most recently, Lynnwood, WA located just north of Seattle, Baekjeong has garnered a loyal following for its celebration of Korean cuisine, culture and nightlife – bringing various communities together around the grill.
Senior Director of Culinary Operations, chef Samuel Kim, showcases an expansive Korean barbecue menu and seasonal banchan, as well as Baekjeong signatures and new dishes crafted specially for the San Jose location. Analogous to his approach with each Baekjeong restaurant, Kim draws from his Korean heritage and time spent in Michelin-starred kitchens to create an experience rooted in culinary tradition and the communal, vibrant spirit of Korean dining. Offerings include house-marinated meats such as Galbi and Bulgogi, contemporary iterations of Korean mainstays like Brisket Cast-Iron Fried Rice and Roasted Bone Marrow Sujebi, customer favorites from Japchae and Seafood Pancake to Pork Belly Kimchi Stew as well as bar-inspired bites including Daebak Fried Chicken Sandwich and Bulgogi Grilled Cheese.
A full bar program complements the menu with well-balanced offerings and a focus on Korean producers including Dokkaebier, Chamisul and Jinro. Korean-inspired cocktails such as a Dongchimi Martini, Dwaenjang Old Fashioned and M-Cubed (a spicy mango margarita made with gochujang syrup) support the menu alongside wine, mocktails and classic cocktails.
Conceptualized in collaboration with Sang Kim of South Korean design firm, Sun Creative, the 9,000 square foot space reveals inspiration from traditional Korean architecture, the night markets of Seoul, as well as the Bay Area’s tech industry. Elements such as mother of pearl, antique woodwork and folk paintings honor Korea’s rich history, while accents like a digital koi pond and colorful pop art projections lend a more modern, playful feel. The distinct focus on design marks a new chapter for the brand as they continue to push the envelope with a reinterpretation of the classic Korean barbecue experience.
Baekjeong San Jose opens with lunch and dinner service, 7 days a week and is located at 2855 Stevens Creek Blvd #1808, San Jose, CA 95050.