Woo Lae Oak INC (Reported Closed)

(212) 925-8200 | View Website

148 Mercer St, New York, NY | Directions   10012

40.724854 -73.998419

 
Restaurants, Dine At The Bar, Celeb Hangout  more

More Tags: Group Dining, Notable Wine List, Private Rooms, Late Night Dining, Family Style Dining

Price: $$$

General Info: Open 7 Days

Payment Methods: MasterCard, Discover, Visa, American Express, Debit Card, Diners Club

Cuisine: Korean

Neighborhoods: SoHo, Downtown

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Owner verified business
 
 
 
Woo Lae Oak INC
Woo Lae Oak INC
Woo Lae Oak INC
Woo Lae Oak INC

Reviews for Woo Lae Oak INC

Recommends
3.0
over a year ago

Not your traditional Korean food – They made me wait for 20 minutes at the bar even if the restaurant was empty.

Food was served fast. We had the spicy tofu stew, hot stone bowl rice, and the cod. The complementary salad was served immediately.

The Soon Doo Boo was filled with tofu and TWO shrimp, very mild taste, not like what you usually get from the Korean Town. The Dol Sot Bi Bim Bap was a lot of rice but not much meat or vegetable or taste. Any Korean Town restaurant could easily beat this.

The Un Dae Gu Jo Rim, black cod, was finally on the winning side. The fish was very fresh, tender and melt in your mouth. it's a dish you could eat a lot of rice with due to the heavy garlic soy sauce.

Our dessert was Yellow Mungbean Cups, which our waiter explained as small cupcakes. Actually they were way much better than cupcakes. They are four mungbean custard paste baked with pistachio in crispy phyllo cups, served with some strawberry jam on the bottom and Chico cookie stick to perk it up. If you are adventurous, you should try this instead of the regular chocolate cake.

If you have an opentable coupon, they added 18% service charge automatically before giving you the final check.

It is a place for Soho yuppies who want the fancy trendy decor, bar drinks and some eye candy waiter. If you want really good Korean food, 35th street of Flushing have much better choices.

Recommends
5.0
over a year ago

The poor reviews kept me away, but eventually ended up with a reservation... And good thing!! I have been back 3 times in the last 2 weeks! – Excellent service, (some of the most personable servers and bartenders) excellent food, amazing Lychee Martinis! This place is great for a fun, cozy, romantic date or a group! This place had a great vibe and a very cool crowd. YOU SHOULD GO!

Doesn't Recommend
1.0
over a year ago

Drunk Manager & Cold Staff – A glorified Korean BBQ restaurant that is overpriced and too snooty for their own good. We were seated 40 minutes late for our reservation and rushed through dinner. The inebriated manager and wait staff are chilly and seem to be in the wrong business. Go to 32nd Street for more authentic Korean food for far less money. There are some new cool places there that easily compete on decor and surpass on the food...BCD Tofu House, Shilla or Don's Bogam BBQ & Wine Bar

Recommends
5.0
over a year ago

go! – hand's down best korean bbq. very authentic for a place that's not in korea-town. been at least four times, it's great for groups, bdays. private areas in back that you can reserve upon request. food is beyond amazing.

Recommends
3.0
over a year ago

Mixed Feelings – Atmosphere is SoHo trendy hip with requisite clubby music in background, cool lighting, comfortable seating and beautiful open kitchen.

Food was not as good as it could have been. Kalbi beef quality was superb but was not served with lettuce and hot sauce as it is normally done Korean style.

The kimchi was just plane bad. The worst I've every had. My guess is that it normally is better - there's just no way that could have been the normal kimchi.

I also ordered a stew that was supposed to be based on tofu and sliced pork. There was tofu aplenty, but literally one tiny piece of pork, less than bite size. I asked the waiter about it, and he just basically acknowledged I was correct and said "sorry". I was pretty suprised that there was no follow up with management, or an offer to bring something else, as there would have been in any well run restaurant. Again, this may just have been a lazy waiter and not reflective of house policy. And (almost forgot) the pork rib appetizer was good but not great - and was presented weirdly in that they tried to make it crostini style - but since it has bones, you couldn't eat it with the bread as served.

I didn't complain, paid my check and left. Unless you need an evening with hip ambience, stick to 32nd Street - it's cheaper, quicker, and mostly better.

Recommends
4.0
over a year ago

really really good black cod, bbq, bibimbop, drinks – Ok guys, take a chill pill! Been here about 25 times. It's true that the waiters can be somewhat aloof. They sort of act like indifferent adolescents. And yes, there are waits. And yes, finally, there are tables with upper east side girls groups who are practically screaming at each other. However, if you like spaces with clean lines, good drinks, and good lighting, and you feel like Korean, this is your only option, so just deal and have another lychee martini!!!!!! Regarding all of the "not authentic Korean" posts. Really, get a life (preferably in some other city!). Ever heard of fusion cooking? The beef for their bulgogi (spell?) is the best in the city. Don't even try to question me on that one. Their black cod is phenomenal, bibimbop really, really, good. The list goes on. Now, stop your whining. It doesn't suit you.

Recommends
5.0
over a year ago

Great Place – I love this restaurant. It's a great place to bring a date or just hang out with friends. I tried going to koreatown but the food there is way too "adventurous" and the waiters are somewhat hostile. That's why i go to Woo Lae Oak... True there is a wait but it is so worth it. Where else can you go and grill your own meat right at your table? Also you don't have all that noise like in ktown and don't leave here smelling like a bbq pit. I love this place and will continue to go there no matter the stupid reviews some people give them.

Doesn't Recommend
1.0
over a year ago

Worst Experience (Bad reviews were very accurate) – This was the worst experience I've had in NYC for numerous reasons.

1. We were seated 45 minutes after reservation, (after I had to hound the hostess to remember us waiting).

2. Waiter took 20 minutes before asking our order.

3. Steak tartar was literally frozen (it was meat flavored ice) and we had waiter take it away after he justified that is the way it was supposed to be prepared. I don't think so...

4. Completely inattentive wait staff. We piled our used dishes and empty beer bottles on a ledge behind us.

5. inattentive wait staff did not bring us dinner plates so we ate our barbecue out of salad dishes.

6. Need I go on........Assistant waiter knocked over wine glass which spilled and broke on my fiancee. We had to instruct him how he needed to bring over fresh napkins, new chopsticks, new plates, etc. which were lost in the spill.

7. Two of our bbq dishes came out 15 minutes after we had finished eating the first four main dishes.

8. They brought the wrong noodle dish to our table.

... We complained and waiter took one bottle of wine off bill (which was fair)....but then, to add insult to injury, we get the bill which has a mandatory 20% gratuity built-in. We asked to speak to the main manager and explained the situation and that this built-in gratuity was unacceptable. He apologized and took it off bill, because "it's been a hectic, busy night for the restaurant". That doesn't justify all the problems we had. You judge a restaurant based on performance on a Saturday night!!....not on some random empty weekday night....and the kicker is that we did all the work, as we were the ones cooking our food and clearing the table! DO NOT GO HERE. ALL THE BAD REVIEWS ARE ACCURATE.

Doesn't Recommend
1.0
over a year ago

Worst Korean BBQ in New York City, simply don't waist your money here – People don't go to this horrible, over priced, outdated, bad bad bad service Korean BBQ place!!!!! Every time we go there we have bad experience. On Christmas day, we had to wait about 20 minutes even though we had reservation, waiter didn't come about 20 minutes to our table, he forgot to bring our drinks, our beef were frozen, he brought only one rice and kimchi veges for our table even though there were 6 of us. This was not the only time we had a horrible time there. One time we had to wait 1 hour to get our table after arriving there on time for our dinner, beef tasted really old so we wanted to change our order but waiter didn't want to take it back, just horrible. Go to Korea town on 32 St. There are really great places on that street and half price compare to this expensive place. We will never ever go back to this place.

Doesn't Recommend
2.0
over a year ago

Bad Customer Service, Mediocre food, great interior and location – Had to wait 40 mins past our reservation for our table.

Main waiter was inattentive. Other waiter who brought food set dishes down randomly at table and did not know what was who's and what sides went with what dish.

Food was just manageable. Dryest & saddest looking Kimchi ever. Should' ve just gone to K-Town instead.

Location and decor is great though, nice "see and be seen" sort of place. ..and good date place if you don't mind the aforementioned let downs.

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Nominated for:
Korean Food (2011)
Celeb Hangout (2005)
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