Ssyal Korean Restaurant and Ginseng House
Ssyal is a Korean institution in Albany Park that's been around since 1988, and is famous for its wonderful ginseng chicken soup. And for good reason: the whole cornish hen floating in broth is unbelievably tender and comforting, especially when eaten with a bite of brown sweet rice and grains. It all comes with a delightful spread of banchan, which your friendly server is always quick to replenish in case you run low on macaroni salad or kimchi.
And while that magical soup is a must-order, Ssyal has other great dishes on their menu, too. Like chewy royal rice cakes, tender galbi, and heavily marinated beef bulgogi that’s sitting in a sweet sauce with carrots and onions. The casual space is really relaxing, and filled with people quietly eating to the sounds of soft instrumental music. So come here instead of booking that hour-long session in a float tank.