Kimchi Smoke BBQ ‘Keeping Our Eyes’ on Potential South Orange, Maplewood Location

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Efforts by leaders in South Orange to lure food truck chef Robert Cho of Kimchi Smoke Barbeque to town may yet pay off.

Cho told Village Green that, while he is now busy opening his first bricks-and-mortar restaurant in Bergenfield, he and staff will be “keeping our eyes” on South Orange and Maplewood.

Village President Sheena Collum and South Orange Village Center Alliance Director Bob Zuckerman successfully lobbied Cho to hold a pop-up event at the South Orange Pop ‘N Shop last Saturday, Dec. 12.

To say that the event went well is an understatement. When Village Green visited the shop directly after the South Orange tree lighting, folks were lined up for Kimchi Smoke and happy to wait as the delicious smells of Southern Korean barbeque wafted through the store.

“As we prepared for the Pop ‘N Shop in South Orange, I was originally thinking that we would not need that much food since, we were only given three hours to sell,” said Cho via email. “However, I was confident that Bob Zuckerman and Sheena Collum would do all they could to bring people to try our food. So we brought a little bit extra. We did not completely sell out, but we did sell out of our brisket and Chonut — our life changing sandwich [which is comprised of] 12-hour smoked brisket, smoked kimchi, pulled pork, bourbon chipotle sauce, and cheese on a glazed donut.”

“Overall, we were very happy with the warm reception we received from the residents and village employees and volunteers,” said Cho. “We also did several events at Seton Hall and see that people in that vicinity appreciate our brand of food.”

Cho said that, as he and his team work to open the Bergenfield location, “we’ll be keeping our eyes on the South Orange and Maplewood area.” Cho said that he encourages residents to email Kimchi Smoke [],” should they have available restaurant locations to suggest.

Visit and “like” Kimchi Smoke Barbeque at

Click on any photo below to see a slideshow of images related to Kimchi Smoke and the pop-event in South Orange.

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