The dizzying array of new stand-alone restaurants headed to Westfield UTC aren’t scheduled to debut until later this year, but the complex’s food court is getting an influx of fresh options that are due this spring. Scheduled to launch at the end of April is Bibigo Fresh Korean Kitchen, part of a global company with its own branded line of Korean packaged foods and several quick-service eateries in the Los Angeles area that has plans to open 130 locations nationwide by 2020. Bibigo gets its name from a mashup of the Korean phrase bi-bi-da ("to mix") combined with "to-go"; its menu centers around bibimbap, a classic Korean rice bowl that’s traditionally topped with vegetables, Korean barbecue beef and egg.
At Bibigo, diners can customize each component, with the choice of starting with a hot stone bowl that sizzles the ingredients as you eat. Base options run from brown and white rice to noodles and salad, with add-ins such as kimchi and bean sprouts and protein toppings including bulgogi beef, garlic chicken, spicy pork and tofu. The bowls are finished with a sauce — from KoHot, a spicy sauce based on Korean red pepper paste, to light and tangy Citron Soy — and a variety of garnishes ranging from crispy garlic to sesame seeds and a fried egg.
Bibigo’s location at UTC will span a 700-square-foot island in the food court, where it replaces Stone Oven; a rep for the company tells Eater that they are looking at additional sites in San Diego.