When I originally reviewed Ham-Hung, I’d been a loyal customer of theirs for years. I don’t know whether they’re under new management or under a new cook or something, but things there have taken a turn for the worse.
I used to love their cold beef broth and their perfectly chewy noodles. But the last two times I’ve been, the broth was tasteless and the noodles were overdone and mushy.
The first time I experienced the new Ham-Hung, I dismissed it as a bad day; a fluke. But I had to admit to myself that I’d seen a steady decline in the quality of their food over the last few years.
I went back a few weeks later for my mom’s birthday dinner, and my parents and I were all roundly dissatisfied with the quality of our meal. I had the mool naeng-myun, and my dad had the naeng-myun combo with kalbi. My mom had the hwe naeng-myun — the same noodles, but in a spicy sauce with pieces of raw skate (a type of fish) in it.
The hwe naeng-myun was definitely the winner. It was adequately spicy, although the noodles were a hopeless mush.
The mool naeng-myun was worse than ever; tasteless and mushy. Even the slice of Asian pear, usually one of my favorite parts of the dish, was tasteless. Maybe that was because it was sliced paper-thin.
And the galbi that came with my dad’s combo was decent. It’s too bad that it came with so little.
For as much money as they charge, I expect a quality bowl of noodles. Granted, the portions are ginormous. But that doesn’t make up for the fact that you can get better naeng-myun at the Korean market food court down the street.
Sorry, Ham-Hung. I tried to hang in there as long as I could, but it’s over. We’re through.
Looks like I’m in the market for a new go-to naeng-myun spot.
10031 Garden Grove Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92844