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Bulkogi – Korean Taco Truck

Posted by DID 24 Mar 2010 43 Comments

My mouth is still on fire from the sweet, spicy BBQ pork taco from Bulkogi, the Korean taco truck that has set up shop in the Wachovia parking lot on 9th street.

Apparently the same truck used to make appearances at the Raleigh Fair Grounds. I talked to the very nice lady who is running Bulkogi and she said that they are just starting but that they plan on setting up in the same spot nightly from 5/6pm until 8pm. Got that? Korean tacos will be sold every night in the Wachovia parking lot on 9th Street. Cheers to living in Durham.

Their menu consisted of five tacos, a kimchi or cheese quesadilla (the only veggie option I saw), a burrito, three sandwiches and two special dishes (a curry plate and a spicy beef plate). The tacos will run you $2, the sandwiches $5 and the plates $7.

Between Daisy Cakes, Only Burger, the new Indian truck and the various taco trucks around town – is it just me – or does food just seem to taste better when it comes from a truck?

PS. The taco was awesome. The pork was sweet almost like it had been marinated in pineapple juice, cabbage added a nice crunch, Sriracha (I’m guessing) the right amount of fire and lime juice the perfect zing.


  • rossgrady said:

    I had the beef tacos. The beef was bulgogi-style, which will be familiar to anyone who has had Korean BBQ – thin strips of lean beef, marinated in a sweet/soy based sauce. Toppings were a mix of diced tomato, onion & pickled cabbage, plus other things that, honestly, I should’ve paid attention to but I was too busy snarfing. Next time!

    There wasn’t a lot of heat – she offered me hot sauce but was in a hurry & was already juggling the open paper container they served the tacos in. Sounds like it might’ve been a squirt of the Rooster that she would’ve given me.

    I took some photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rossgrady/4461212102/

    They have kimchi for the quesadilla (OK, to be fair, any Korean pickled veggie is properly kimchi, but I’m assuming we’re talking the hot stuff) so next time I’ll inquire as to the possible variations for the tacos.

    I only counted 3 tacos: beef, spicy pork, and chicken — the three meats that are also available as burritos & “sliders”. A fourth meat option – Kalbi, or beef short rib – is available with fried rice.

    I look forward to working my way through the rest of the menu!


  • DID (author) said:

    Ross- you’re totally right – I was counting the burritos and other stuff in my taco count – really only three taco options. Wishful thinking on my part.


  • Anton Zuiker said:

    I’m just now writing my post about happening upon the Bulkogi truck. I had the kimchi quesadilla, and liked it. This is a welcome addition to the neighborhood.


  • RPP said:

    DID: You are awesome.

    And yes, food tastes better from a truck.


    DID replies on March 25th, 2010 at 11:27 am:

    Thanks RPP!


  • JME Guptill said:

    I tried their Steak & Cheese tonight. It was delicious. Standard deal with grilled onions and peppers with the added twist of their Korean Beef. I didn’t get any heat off of it but it was a nice sweet and tangy twist on the classic sandwich. I’m gonna go for tacos or sliders tomorrow.


  • eray kim said:

    do they have a twitter account so i know where they are?


    Anton Zuiker replies on March 25th, 2010 at 1:26 pm:

    No Twitter account yet. I explained how OnlyBurger uses Twitter so effectively, and that they should definitely use it so we can monitor the truck’s location.


    Mike replies on March 29th, 2010 at 10:07 am:

    NCBulkogi on twitter


  • Tachoblog » Archives » Pimp My Truck – An Update From Tachoblog said:

    [...] Bulkogi – Korean Taco Truck | Carpe Durham [...]

  • judas_escargot said:

    Kimchi quesadilla? Bulgogi burrito? Wooooow. I guess I know what I’m doing this evening.

    Something similar to this out on the west coast as well, Korean/Mexican fusion taco truck… Big hit over there, can’t remember for the life of me what it is called though.


    Kevin replies on March 25th, 2010 at 1:02 pm:

    The one in LA is called Kogi. It’s the original and has inspired many copy-cats across the US (which, isn’t necessarily a bad thing).


  • Tachoblog » Archives » Korean Taco Truck In USA – But What Is It Asks Tachoblog said:

    [...] Bulkogi – Korean Taco Truck | Carpe Durham [...]

  • DID (author) said:

    eray kim – She said they will just be at the Wachovia parking lot every night. They’ll show up some time between 5-6 and leave at 8 pm.

    All of the official looking permits in the window made me feel good about them sticking around.


  • apathy said:

    I went. It was awesome. Seriously the best thing I’ve eaten in Durham in quite a while. There seemed to be quite a line going by 6:30 or so, but the turn around was pretty fast. The beef tacos were my favorite, especially with the sriracha (the best condiment ever in my opinion). The others were pretty great to. I think 3 tacos and a coke was 7$. They were super nice, and everyone around me seemed to be enjoying their food too.


  • CA said:

    So we experimented tonight.

    The chicken taco was good, but I was surprised at exactly how small it was. I think it would take about 4 to make a meal of any size.

    The Kimchi Quesadilla is NOT veggie FYI. We thought it was – it’s loaded with beef. Good if you eat meat, not good if you don’t. I wonder if even the cheese would come without meat. We didn’t ask.

    We did ask hours – they said Mon-Fri 5:30-10:00 now. They were slammed this evening (probably because of all the publicity:)). It was about a 20 minute wait for 2 things.


    DID replies on March 25th, 2010 at 9:10 pm:

    CA – sad to hear the kimchi quesadilla wasn’t veggie!


    rossgrady replies on March 26th, 2010 at 8:49 am:

    I suspect it could be made without beef.

    Although that lady *is* really proud of her beef . . . I was talking to her about how people in Durham are excited about food trucks, and she scowled and said something like “we’re better than taco trucks! Taco trucks use cheap meat!” Then she grabbed the big stainless bin of precooked beef and brought it over to the window and started kind of shaking it at me, saying “Lean beef! Lean beef!”

    It was awesome. I guess it’s to be expected from a truck named Bulkogi.

    Anyway. As far as the kimchi recipe is concerned, there are 15,000 different ones, and some use dried shrimp or anchovy (or fish sauce), but some don’t. Would be worth asking about.


    CA replies on March 26th, 2010 at 9:39 am:

    Good point about fish sauce. We eat seafood and chicken, so didn’t think about that. Definitely not a terribly non-beef eater friendly place, though. One of their specials for the evening was chicken curry. Has anyone tried that?

    Ross Grady replies on April 5th, 2010 at 11:00 am:

    Followup: I talked to her & she told me that both of their kimchi recipes involve fish sauce. Which officially means that *none* of the tasty Korean dishes from the truck are vegetarian or even vegetarian-able.

  • Sant said:

    It would be awesome if these trucks were located in one central place, sort of like the street food vendors in Asia. How amazing would it be to be able get some Korean food then hop over and get some samosas or dosas from the truck next to it, or maybe some tacos at anoter truck…one can dream! If I can ever talk my parents into moving up here, heck, I’ll start one myself. My mom’s dosas, samosas, pakoras, tuna patties, pani puris, jilabis, etc., puts all other Indian food I’ve had here to shame.


    TSQ75 replies on March 26th, 2010 at 10:16 am:

    I’ve heard about Pani Puri for ages and am dying to try it! puffy dough balls dunked in flavored water…mmm lol


    Tooth replies on March 26th, 2010 at 10:36 am:

    They have Pani Puri at Rajbhog Cafe in Morrisville.


    Probably at Cool Breeze in Cary, too.


    Sant replies on March 26th, 2010 at 11:16 am:

    Yes, Cool Breeze has it. It’s pretty good but I like their sev batata puris better. If anyone is interested, I’m hosting a tour of some of the Indian food joints in Chatham Square in Cary.


  • JED said:

    Went last night with another Duke friend and got 2 chicken BBQ tacos (he got 1 chicken, 1 pork). The scene was new enough that we were the first to plug it into foursquare – but when we walked by again later that night the truck was swarming with what looked like a lot of students and a few other Durhamites. The tacos were delicious – really fabulous. We deemed them better than Chubby’s. They have a similar kind of tortilla but the filling is so much better. The meat was well marinated and comes with something like diced tomato and onion and some kind of green – I didn’t look as closely as I should have. Squeeze the limes on the chicken ones – the perfect touch. We’ll be back real soon.


  • Drew3D said:

    I haven’t had the Bulkogi yet, but I found this twitter feed that looks almost brand new: http://twitter.com/NCBulkogi

    Any word on whether they are coming back to the Raleigh fairgrounds? Like maybe this weekend?


  • Caroline said:

    Drew3D, the Bulkogi truck was at the fairgrounds today. Happened to go to the flea market and ran across it there, and got super excited.

    I ordered one of each kind of taco, put a dab of Sriracha on there, and they were INCREDIBLE. They were quite small — 3 tacos made a light lunch — but so delicious, especially with lime wedges squeezed over them. It was $2 per taco and a buck for a drink to go with it.

    Can’t wait for a repeat visit in Durham.


  • dave said:

    We went on Saturday. We had a kim chi quesadilla and a chicken burrito. Both excellent. Has anyone tried the bulkogi dog or the kim chi bulkogi dog?


  • Peter said:

    My wife stopped on Saturday and got a bulkogi w/ fried rice and some sort of chicken curry dish.

    She tried to order the kalbi but they didn’t have it that day.

    The food was good but a little odd.

    Both the chicken curry and the bulkogi were about half suateed cabbage.

    I didn’t mind it in the curry but it didn’t work that well for the bulkogi.

    The bulkogi beef was good quality and well marinated.

    I enjoyed it but doubt we’d go out of our way to go there again.


  • JEN said:

    I haven’t been yet, but just noticed the taco price was upped by a buck on their twitter page. I’m curious if they’ve increased size of the tacos since many have mentioned they’re small?


  • Alison said:

    So this breed of cuisine is a literal fusion of Korea and Mexico? Does anyone else find this just absolutely delightfully outlandish and a perfect fit for Durham palates?


  • joyce said:

    wow, the tacos are so small and cannot fill a korean belly.


  • Donny said:

    Just tried out the tacos (all three) and all I can say is go as soon as you can. They were so good.


  • dave said:

    I tried a kim chi bulkogi hot dog on Friday. I really liked it – a good quality hot dog on a nice bun with kim chi, bulkogi, and (I think) some cheese. Very tasty.


  • Sant said:

    The truck was missing this past Saturday. I dropped into Sam’s to get beer and asked if they knew what was going on and they said that the truck had a mechanical issue and was out of commission. So check them out on Twitter before you got to see if they are operating so you won’t be disappointed.

    I also asked about the dosa truck and they said he was still working on getting the permits.


    mmmyummy replies on April 21st, 2010 at 1:24 am:

    thanks for the dosa truck updates. i’ve been wondering if we’ll ever see it again…here’s to hoping it’ll be soon!

    does anyone have any idea what the timeline is like for those permits?


  • bj said:

    Slightly relevant article in NY Times:


  • Crumb » Cooke Street Carnival! said:

    [...] options this year. Jonathan King will once again be cooking a pig all night long for the event. Bulkogi Korean BBQ/Korean BBQ Taco Truck will be on hand serving up delicious Korean food. Remedy Diner will bring some of their sandwiches [...]

  • Michele said:

    Anyone have any contact info for these people? We’d like to schedule them for an event, but I can’t fins contact info anywhere!!! Thanks!


    DID replies on March 24th, 2011 at 4:46 pm:

    I would direct message them on twitter twitter.com/ncbulkogi or just go talk to them at Wachovia – they’re there almost every night. hope this works! c


  • Michele said:

    Anyone have any contact info for these people?? I’d like to schedule them for an event but can’t find contact info. Thanks!


  • John Adam said:

    Really like this truck in which the whole food arrangement is present. These type of food trucks should be plied on the roads to give a new concept of taking lunch or dinner in motion :-)

    Made in Korea


  • bob said:

    Sell business credit ….NO spam allowed, can’t you f’ing read man?!!


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