Sesame Hut: This Korean Beef Is Cheap, and It Is Delicious

Categories: Lunch

Photos by John Kiely
The onion rings are a great touch.

Northwest Mall has seen better years, as the Macy's wing has no Macy's, and the Antique Center of Texas (Hey look, cool old stuff for sale in a mall) anchors the other wing. However, the place still thrives as a bazaar of interesting one-off stores, offices and clubs, and the food court has several good places at which to eat.

The standout food stall, with a steady stream of lunchtime customers, is Sesame Hut. It serves typical mall Chinese fare, and the employees will ask you to sample their spicy chicken, but what Sesame Hut is famous for -- especially to guests from the gleaming HISD headquarters across the street -- is the Bulgoki Korean Beef.

You wouldn't expect much for $5.99, but what you'll get is a surprisingly large amount of faintly sweet yet tangy beef with onions. It's not low-grade chewy beef, but rather tender beef that will leave you completely satisfied. The fried rice that comes with it isn't of the same exceptional quality, but that won't matter, because bulgoki is the reason to come to Sesame Hut.

The eggrolls are good, too.

Also, pay attention to the onion rings on top. They fall into a middle ground between classic fried onion rings and tempura, and are very good. However, if you decide to carry out your bulgoki from the mall, be sure to eat the onion rings before you go; otherwise they'll get soggy on the trip back to your office or home.

Access to Sesame Hut is easier than it looks. Just turn into the entrance of Northwest Mall across 18th Street from HISD, and park at the front entrance of the mall. Don't worry, there's plenty of parking. The Sesame Hut is just inside the entrance, and you'll be out of there in no time with the best $5.99 Korean beef you've ever had.

Location Info


Northwest Mall

9500 Hempstead, Houston, TX

Category: General

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My Voice Nation Help

I've been visiting this place since I was in middle school (I'm 37 now) and the menu hasn't changed much.  Yums.  However, don't think I didn't notice the plate is not as deep, Sesame Hut.  It's okay.  I still love you.


There's another hole-in-the-wall Korean joint I've been wanting to try in an equally unlikely place: Katy, Barker Cypress just north of I-10, forget the name but encouraging to see the spread beyond Long Point/Chinatown and the chi-chi newbs like Nara inside the Loop.

erichenao topcommenter

The Antique Center is friggen HUGE. You can easily spend the entire day in it.

jeffbalke topcommenter

Weird to say it, but that Sbarro has some of the best simple baked ziti I've ever eaten. Haven't been there in a couple years. May need to head back.

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