Not Routine

A Korean-American poutine mash-up at Del Seoul

Lincoln Park's Del Seoul is a jumble of influences: Korean meats, Mexican tortillas and Vietnamese sandwiches collide on the menu.

And the hearty heft of the kimchi-and-pork-belly fries (pictured; $7) brings Canada to mind, and its iconic meal-atop-potatoes poutine.

At Del Seoul, thick, fresh-cut fries are topped with sautéed kimchi and onions, kimchi salsa, melted cheddar and Jack cheeses, sour cream, thin slices of chile-speckled pork and a healthy scattering of scallions. The dish is a clear descendant of the cheesy fry, but the level of satisfaction it provides is closer to what we associate with the Canadian version.

An order of pickled Kirby cucumbers with sesame seeds and chiles ($2) makes an ideal between-bite palate cleanser–or primer. Next, try one of the cross-cultural tacos; we're partial to the kalbi (marinated short rib; $2.50) heaped with a crunchy cabbage slaw dotted with chiles and sesame seeds.

For a single-origin dish, there are steamed Seoul-style street dumplings, fortune-cookie-shaped packages with a silky wrapper and a soft pork and chive filling. The recipe comes from Senoya, the Niles restaurant run by the parents of Del Seoul's owners. They're a taste of tradition that goes perfectly with the modern mash-up.

Del Seoul, 2568 N. Clark St.; 773-248-4227 or delseoul.com