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Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain

Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
(Image: Megan Leahy)

Name: Barrio Coreano Contact Info: 642 Bloor St. W., 416-901-5188, @PlayaCabana
Neighbourhood: The Annex Chef/Owner: Dave Sidhu, the chef and owner of all four Playa Cabana outposts

The Food: Mexican tacos punched up with Korean ingredients like wasabi, daikon and kimchi. The tiny tortillas come loaded with things like bulgogi-style barbecue beef topped with house-pickled pears, or flash-fried ahi tuna with jicama, purple cabbage and yuzu vinaigrette.

The Drinks: Korean spins on classic cocktails, like house sangria spiked with soju. A whiskey sour gets a pungent kick from fermented kimchi juice. Spanish beers are available by the bottle.

The Place: The fourth outpost of the Playa chain is grungier and funkier than its midtown counterparts. Rusting chairs, peeling paint and a pair of curlicued iron gates make the space feel like a bluesy back-alley. So do all the humming neon signs, which bathe the bar in red light.

The Numbers: • 3,000 mile road trip to Hollywood to pick up a flashy neon sign in the shape of a star • 100 chairs salvaged from a cricket stadium in India • 16 bowling alley lanes repurposed as wooden tabletops • 5 Korean-inspired tacos (for five bucks each)

Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain
Introducing: Barrio Coreano, a Korean-inspired addition to the Playa Cabana taco chain

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