It’s true: Seoul Taco will soon be joining the ranks of Columbia’s beloved downtown. The Korean-Mexican food-truck-turned-restaurant is slated to open downtown sometime before the spring semester.
Established in 2011, Seoul Taco became a leader in the St. Louis food truck scene.
“The feedback from the food truck was great,” owner David Choi says.
Seoul Taco soon opened a freestanding restaurant in St. Louis due to its need for a full kitchen. The St. Louis restaurant is right down the street from Washington University, part of the reason Choi decided to come to Columbia.
When asked “Why Columbia?,” Choi says, “We really think it’s a cool time in Columbia now … Everyone in my family went to Mizzou.”
He says Columbia is “a unique small town” complete with a “homey feel.”
When Seoul Taco hits CoMo, however, it won’t be solo. Strange Donuts, a trendy, cutting-edge donut shop and fellow St. Louis eatery, will be moving in with Seoul Taco. The two restaurants will each have their own kitchens but will share a dining space. The two have collaborated in the past, creating the Seoul Done, a potato and pepper flake cake donut with greens, jack cheddar cheese, bulgogi and shredded carrots on the inside and a chili glaze on top. The duo was also part of Kaldi’s Columbia Takeover on October 10.
Choi says he plans to bring the food truck to Columbia as he’s done for events like last month’s Roots ‘N Blues ‘N BBQ Festival.
The Korean-Mexican fare is sure to provide an interesting and innovative shift from Columbia’s current offerings. Seoul Taco’s specialty is its Korean-inspired taco, featuring Korean greens, green onion and special “Seoul Sauce” with a choice of chicken, spicy pork, tofu or bulgogi, which is Korean marinated beef.
Choi said Seoul Taco prides itself on its marination process. The team marinates its meats for 24 hours before cooking. Along with the tacos, the restaurant also serves quesadillas with Seoul Sauce, burritos with kimchi fried rice and Gogi bowls, featuring rice, vegetables, a fried egg and spicy gochujang sauce.
While the opening date of Seoul Taco and Strange Donuts’ store is not set in stone, Columbia residents can expect Seoul Taco to be open sometime before the winter ends.