Korean restaurant Wero now open on Ballard Ave

A Korean restaurant named Wero has opened in the former Gerald location at 5210 Ballard Ave NW.

The Gerald owner Wes Yoo decided to change the bar into a full-on Korean restaurant after experimenting with the concept as a pop-up takeout business. Yoo said he wanted Seattle “to experience the meals that he ate as a child in Seoul—familiar cuisine that soothed his worries in the depths of the pandemic.”

Yoo closed The Gerald in December and has been transforming the space and the menu to reflect its new identity as Wero.

Wero has many meanings in Korean: It means “to comfort,” “upwards,” and “into the stomach.” Here’s Yoo’s description, as written on Wero’s website:

The first meaning is “to comfort”, and that is the goal of every dish we serve. We believe that comfort food is more than just the food that fills a craving; truly comforting meals provide nourishment for the mind, body and soul. Another meaning of Wero is “upwards”, and that forms another pillar of our culinary philosophy. We aim to explore, to innovate, and to elevate. Our goal is to show Seattle a different type of Korean cuisine, one that authentically reflects the diversity of delicacies available on the peninsula. The final meaning of Wero is a sort of pun, roughly translating as “into the stomach”. We pride ourselves on the high quality of our ingredients, the skill of our chefs, and the incredible flavors of our Korean dishes. All this to say, when it comes to deciding what goes into your stomach, we’re the experts.

A peek at the menu shows small plate offerings including Jeon (전), a savory pancake with kimchi, potatoes, mung beans, and YookHweh (육회), a Korean-style beef tartare with prime tenderloin.

Wero’s large plates include Jjajang Dupbop (짜장덮밥), a black bean sauce with pork shoulder, mushrooms, and veggies served over rice, which is a rice version of the Chinese-Korean dish that is often eaten on moving day and graduation day; and Salmon Jorim (연어조림), king salmon seared and poached in a spicy and sweet broth with daikon and served with rice.

Wero had its soft opening on March 11, and is open Wednesday to Saturday, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Photo: Wero on Facebook