A Guide to Those Awesome Korean Condiments: Omi's Banchan

Without a doubt the most interesting part of any Korean meal is the banchan, a number sides that come to the table in tiny individual bowls to be eaten on their own, or used to compliment grilled meats and other dishes. The only problem: they tend to hit your table with little explanation, and you can often be left wondering what the hell you're pushing around with your chopsticks.

While dining at Omi, the subject of this week's review, I cornered one of my waitresses and had her explain each dish to me. After I was done with my visits, I had photographer Lori Bandi capture some of the sides you'll likely encounter at Omi. Most of them are common enough that you'll see them at any Korean restaurant.

This is only a fraction of what you'll see in during a visit.

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This is just the start, of course. There's still traditional cabbage kimchi, pickled daikon slices you can use like taco shells for grilled meats, miso soup and egg soufflé. There are lettuce leaves for wrapping ingredients and spicy greens for adding crunch and heat and the staff will replenish any bowl that you finish. It's truly an endless procession of flavors.

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