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Korean

Nothing kraze about it.

imageMy aristocratic mate and I went skating around Marina Bay scaring off some pedestrians and ourselves and when we became hungry we didn’t want to venture too far from MBS and so decided to go for quick and dirty and have some Korean style burgers at ‘Kraze Burger‘.

I had the K.B.++ mainly because of the promising extra fried egg but what came out to our table was a pale oatmeal bun (special order) stacked with some rather sad looking toppings. The bun was just too big and dry for the small piece of meat which reminded me a little of one of those frozen ramly burger patties and unfortunately didn’t bring many flavours with it either. The egg was overly well done with a bright yellow yolk and quite bland as well and I couldn’t actually tell what the special in the kraze sauce was all about. Admittedly the best things about this were the fresh and crunchy lettuce, the sharpish thick slice of onion and the extra sour pickle, nothing amazing but at least some flavours.

I thought to remember ‘Kraze Burger‘ as being alright but tonight and for the price we paid I didn’t see anything that I would fancy having again.

Kraze Burger
2 Bayfront Avenue
#B2-54/55 Marina Bay Sands
Singapore 018956
Tel: +65 6688 7844
http://krazeburger.com.sg/

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My kinda buffet.

imageA bunch of friends wanted to try out the ‘Korean BBQ’ at ‘Seoul Restaurant’ at Chijmes tonight and at first I wasn’t too excited because buffets and semi-creative restaurant names make me sceptical. The place however looked quite nice and they sat us in one of their separate rooms. The buffet they has on was à la carte buffet (?) which we had to leave our private room for as apparently it’s not available in there. Anyhow, back in the main room with the crowd we ordered loads and loads of stuff from the slightly reduced “buffet” menu.

All the food and meats were fairly nice and for the amount we ate at $50ish per person also pretty reasonably priced but the two outstanding dishes for me were the ‘L.A Galbi‘, soy sauce marinated bone in beef short rib and the chilled ‘Mul-naengmyeon‘ 냉면.

The ribs were rustic beefy, deep flavoured from the soy and even though a bit tougher to chew my favourite of the carnivore options.

imageThe buckwheat noodles were truly outstanding, refreshingly chilled with some crunchy textures from radish and cucumbers and the noodles itself had a weirdly awesome slippery texture, chewy and squeaky. Following a friend’s recommendation I used the entire accompanying mustard mixing it into the cold broth, which brought tears to my eyes, made it nose-cuttingly sharp and surprisingly fun to eat.

The place is good, value for money with a tasty selection of meats and other dishes and the à la carte buffet concept takes out the queues and battling for the most popular plates, usually longer exposed to the air than one wishes for, so definitely my clear preference on a buffet take. Just weird rules like the different menu for the private rooms is probably due for a makeover.

Seoul Restaurant 서울
30 Victoria Street
#02-01A Chijmes
Singapore 187996
Tel: +65 6338 8548
http://www.seoul.com.sg/

All day, every day, guotie.

imageI had this on my list for a million years but never seemed to narrow one of their shops down during my previous visits to Hong Kong. This time around wandering the streets of Causeway Bay today we literally ran into one.

imageThese must be up there with the best takeout snacks there is, I mean “Guotie 2 Go”, come on! We had the original and the kimchi flavoured dumplings and both were fantastic even though the kimchi one was by far better because of the extra spicy flavours going on in there. The skin was super thin, nicely crusted and filled with a smooth meat, cabbage and chives mixture. I could’ve eaten this stuff all day. Watch out for the yellow sign.

Bafang Yunji 八方雲集
Nr. 5 Cannon Street 銅鑼灣景隆街5號地下3A舖 (multiple branches)
Causeway Bay
Hong Kong
Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China
Tel: +852 2893 2558
http://www.8way.asia/

Totally worth the smelly clothes.

imageIt was meat o’clock and so we headed for Tanjong Pagar, ‘Korean BBQ‘ heaven. We ordered the ‘Beef Set‘ at ‘Manbok Galbi’ which was massive and for only S$85 more than reasonable. All the cuts were tasty but my favourite by far was the wine marinated short rib which had the richest flavours of all. The sirloin was a bit streaky and chunky tonight but the rest of the meats were lean and tender. I also liked their free flow appetisers especially the strong fermented tasting kimchi and the onion salad. As always we added the ‘Kimchi-Jeon‘ (pancake) to our order which tasted pretty good but could’ve done well with some more actual kimchi. It looked quite pale too and I wished it to be more crispy and less oily as well.

The service was rather unemotional except that one waiter so kindly showed me how to properly lettuce wrap my meat (thanks for touching my food dude) but just at the very end also the boss couldn’t resist anymore and gave us a smile on the way. This was great, I’ll come back.

Korean BBQ Restaurant Manbok Galbi
63 Tanjong Pagar Road
Singapore 88484
Tel: +65 6221 9942

I love Meaty-Thursdays.

imageMy good friend was about to move to Hong Kong and so I met her for some last minute yakiniku dinner at ‘Ito-Kacho’ at the Mandarin Gallery, a place is setup minimalistic somewhere between casual and elegant.

We felt a bit fancy so we ordered the large version of their premium cuts ‘Matsu Set‘ consisting of several different Wagyu and US breed cuts. Pretty much all of the meat was fantastic but my absolute favourite was the wonderfully marbled, buttery ‘Wagyu Toku-Jo-Bara‘. It had a light rose color and melted like ice cream, no teeth needed. The second best, even though slightly tougher than the rest but therefore with a strong beef and wine marinade flavour was the ‘Tsubo-Zuke Karubi‘ (US) short rib. Sideways we had the ‘Dashimaki Tamago‘ (Japanese omelette) which was also good and the ‘Kimchi-Moriawase‘ which I loved aside the otherwise mainly carnivory dinner.

This wasn’t too cheap at S$249 for the beef set only but then, we had a massive 780g of beautiful meats which was a very nice treat for a special occasion like this. I have more yakiniku places lined up to try out but this one is surely one to return to.

Ito-Kacho Yakiniku
333A Orchard Road
#04-08/09/10 Mandarin Gallery
Singapore 238897
Tel: +65 6836 0111
http://www.itokacho.com.sg/

My Kopitiam Attempt.

imageMy friend from Jakarta who stayed with me wanted to eat some porridge and I wasn’t feeling too well so we decided to go for something quick and dirty round the corner and ended up at one of my least favorite places, the Kopitiam in Velocity. At least it looked more appealing since they had renovated the whole food court last year.

Looking for something that would be soothing my stomach I spotted a promising ‘Chicken Noodle Soup‘ at the ‘Korean Cuisine’ stall. There was nothing really special about this but it fitted the purpose. The soup was close to tasteless but therefore the natural flavors of the ingredients came out. There was a generous portion of rightly cooked rice noodles, leaves of cabbage, quite nice meat of chicken breast and a very funny squarish shaped hard poached egg. These were all very basic flavors without too much spices being used but it gave me back some of the power that I needed.

I’m not a big fan of Kopitiam and probably never will be but this was quite okay and I might return for a light and cheap after-workout-meal sometime.

Korean Cuisine
#03-47/56 Kopitiam
Velocity @Novena Square
238 Thomson Road
Singapore 307683

Good Star K!

imageIt was my highschool friend’s last night in Singapore and originally we planned to go to another dan dan mian place in Tanjong Pagar but on the way there we spontaneously opted for ‘Korean BBQ‘ at ‘Super Star K’ instead. I had never been here before but it looked cozy from the outside and was   packed with guests which always is a rather good sign. We ordered the ‘King Sized Beef Ribs‘, the ‘Seasoned Beef Ribs‘, the ‘Pork Belly BBQ‘ and my beloved ‘Kimchi Pancake‘.

The ribs and especially the marinated ones had a strong beefy taste to them which you don’t get from the leaner cuts. They were a bit chunky at parts but there were plenty of buttery pieces that were pretty yummy. I was a bit concerned about the pork belly as it was cut into thicker slices like they do at ‘Red Pig‘ but at ‘Super Star’ the outcome was mouth watering. Most of the fatty stripes melted on the coals and the ones that were left melted in my mouth, it tasted great and just how I like my pork belly.

imageI also was a fan of the ‘Kimchi Pancake‘. It had many onions in there but also big leaves of kimchied cabbage which gave the pancake it’s spicy signature kick. On the menu it said that from the third refill of side dishes on they do charge you for it but we didn’t even get that far to proof it.

I overall liked the place for the ambience and the food but will still continue searching for a barbie to match my Seoul experience. Til then this goes into the “Been There, Done That” box for the optional return visit.

Super Star K Korean BBQ Restaurant                                                                                                                75 Tanjong Pagar Road                                                                                                                          Singapore 088496