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Korean Favourites

Korean Favourites

Featuring Baek Jung Korean Restaurant & Bar, 8 Korean BBQ (Clarke Quay Central), Churro 101 (Bugis+), Seorae Korean Charcoal BBQ (Plaza Singapura), Nunsongyee (Bugis), Doong Ji Korean Restaurant, Kimme, Two Hana, Dong Bang Hong Korean Chinese Restaurant 东方红, Hyang To Gol Korean Restaurant (Amara Hotel)
Veronica Phua
Veronica Phua

T R E A T
Guys, is this Circuit Breaker bringing out food cravings of dishes you haven’t had in ages? It is definitely doing that to me! Like when @rachelxie, PR & Comms Manager at K Food Holdings, asked if I would like to order in some Korean food, the thought of stuffing my face on Korean Fried Chicken (#KFC) became unshakably appealing. So our Sunday lunch was a delivery from @chirchirsg, “Singapore’s favourite chimaek restaurant”.
It’s probably been about three years since I last sank my chompers into a piece of Korean Fried Chicken but judging from the spread we had, I think I may have made up for lost time 😂.
Getting the signature Honey Butter Fried Chicken was a no-brainer. Tossed together with potato wedges and firmly chewy tteokbokki (Korean rice cakes), the large pieces of juicy, very crunchy-skinned chicken came ready dressed in the finger-licking sauce.
All the other flavours of the KFC however, had the sauces separately packed, to be poured on the grease-free fried chicken just before eating. What I thought was very smart was the way they cut a wedge in the lid of the container holding the chicken. This allows it to remain incredibly crunchy as it does not get soggy from condensation.
I thought the Spicy Drumlets and Wings were nice enough but the Garlic Soy was the flavour I found myself most drawn to. Rather fortuitous it was then that I’d ordered both half a chicken and the chicken tenders (these are the easiest to eat because they‘re boneless) in that savoury variant.
The Spicy Tteokbokki lived up to its name but although it can trigger the need for big gulps of water, there‘s something irresistible about the fiery stew of chewy rice cakes with vegetables and beancurd skin. Do get it to share though as the portion is large.

Best way to order is to tap on the link in @chirchirsg’s Instagram bio.

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T R E A T
@kieranngsweepoh’s big heart led me to try the food I‘ve been eyeing, sooner than I thought I could - the Korean dishes that Chef-owner @sunkimchi and his team have been preparing since the start of this Circuit Breaker. A few items are pretty much fixed in the a la carte menu but the Korean Heritage Set is refreshed weekly if I’m not mistaken. I was fortunate enough to have received a mix of both.
The two items from the a la carte were the big and tasty Meta Family Meal #Gimbap, also known as Korean rice rolls with tuna, egg and vegetables ($15), and the Banana Chocolate Millefeuille ($20), a crispy flaky dessert that‘s calibrated on point for richness, flavour and sweetness.
Even though it is meant for one person, the Korean Heritage Meal ($38 this week) has a few components (do follow @metasingapore’s Instagram account to be kept updated on the next Set Menu so you can pre-order). This week’s included a Botanjang (very flavourful soy-marinated raw prawns that had a tinge of salacious spiciness), Egg Jangjorim (the popular marinated runny-yolked egg), Korean Chicken Stew (a hearty, comfort food-style main dish filled with soft carrots and potatoes) and a tray of Steamed Korean rice topped with tobiko and seaweed.

If you are keen to try their Takeaway offerings (and I recommend you do), please:

Call: 6513 0898
WhatsApp: 9750 8275

Pick-up hours: Tuesdays to Sundays, 11.30am-9pm.

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Although I don’t dine at Korean restaurants on a regular basis, I find the food I tried at “Joo Mak” to be exceptionally tasty and very good value-for-money. Besides serving what I consider the best Seafood Pancake in Singapore and a much-better-than-average kimchi as part of their banchan, they also do superb meats for barbecue. We tried the pork belly ($15) and the ribeye ($28), and thought highly of the quantity and quality of both.
The venue is not that big and can feel a tad cramp. This also means during the weekend, you can expect long queues. The good thing is “Joo Mak” takes reservations so I would recommend making one.

H O S T E D
My favourite beef dish of the night was this take on the classic Bulgogi.
The marinated Wagyu rump had been charcoal grilled, then blowtorched for the fat to melt so it was fabulously juicy. The sliced steak was then topped with piquant bell peppers that had been sautéed in vinegar for a lift of acidity, and fresh Mizuna drizzled with a little sesame oil. The flavour combination was sublime.

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Inspired by the Korean rice ball, this starter which is built upon a crispy nori chip, has a very generous serving of Hokkaido uni laid on top of seaweed-mixed rice, kimchi and a Korean sauce called “yangneum jang”. A good choice to start your meal with if you love your uni.

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My friend Annette and I were very impressed with this dish. Yes, that’s some beautiful intricate presentation for the eyes to feast on but trust me when I say, wait till you take a bite.
Before being charcoal-grilled to a lovely smokiness, the squid was marinated in Korean chilli paste, pear and apple which made it remarkably tender, sweet and flavourful. They were dressed in oyster sauce vinaigrette and arranged on a multigrain risotto with tobiko. The rather surprising yet brilliant touch was the use of Southeast fresh herbs of kaffir lime leaf and Thai basil. They lent the dish a most lovely fragrance, making it a must-try in my book.

Wow! One bite of the kimchi here and I was in heaven. It’s spicy, salty enough and sour (but not too much) - a perfectly balanced taste that suits my palate. The other items in the banchan were acceptable but nowhere as mind-blowing.

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Easily one of the best, if not the best Korean Seafood Pancake I have ever eaten. Finished with a light crisp, it has a layer of fluffy egg on top of the starchy one that holds all the pieces of fresh tasting prawns, squid and juicy chives.
The accompanying dip, complete with sweetish pickled onions, is the perfect condiment for the superbly executed pancake.
I can’t wait to return for another meal at this little Korean eatery.

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“Baek Jung” is an offspring of a parent restaurant company in South Korea, and is run by a group of friendly, enthusiastic young Koreans.
Four of us lunched there recently and after using two of our Burpple Beyond 1-for-1 deals there, only paid $55 in total (or $13.75 per person). Which is a real steal considering we ordered two stews (both are actually sized large for sharing), a seafood pancake and a plate of beef bulgogi. To be honest, we didn’t even manage to finish all the food.
Filled with quite a lot of thickly-sliced pork belly, the Kimchi Pork Stew ($25+) wasn’t that spicy and leaned towards the slightly sweet side. It’s good for those of you who find the very spicy versions elsewhere too overwhelming.
In comparison, the savoury Beef Brisket in Soybean Paste Stew ($25+) had less meat but was chockfull of potatoes, leeks and tofu.
I thought the BaekJung Seok-Seol Beef Bulgogi ($19+) with its fine slices of beef, had a really tasty marinade. In fact a few of us voted it the best dish of the lot.
The Seafood Pancake ($18+) was pretty decent too. There was a reasonable amount of chives and chopped up squid cooked into it. Texturally, it’s pleasantly chewy due to the amount of flour added in with the eggs.

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Don’t bother cracking your head trying to decide which of Two Hana’s Korean fried chicken you should order. This gets you the best of both worlds. So you can munch first on the sweet and sticky Honey Butter Drumlets (they even top these with almond-studded popcorn) then switch over to the spicy Yangnyeom Drumlets. Vice versa works just as well.

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The bowl this comes in makes the serving size appear small but because all the toppings are actually compacted together, you‘ll realise your belly is actually full after you’re done with it.
I was not expecting the beef to be that tender or well seasoned either but it was. Nice.

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M E D I A T A S T I N G
Think of “Seoul in a Sandwich” as “Subway” but with Korean style fillings. Thoughtfully divided into light and hearty categories, the sandwiches come in either sweet (Matcha White Chocolate, Citron Cheese & Pear) or savoury combinations.
Judging from what we got to try at this brand new takeaway kiosk in Basement 1 of the revamped Century Square Mall, the freshly made sandwiches are really tasty and very good value-for-money.
The two I liked most were the Seoul Street Toast ($6.50, pictured top right) that had onion cabbage omelette, chicken ham and sliced cheese between slices of white bread, and the Army Stew-ich ($8.50), a witty but more importantly, well-crafted take on the extremely popular Korean stew. Substantial in size, it was a ciabatta stuffed with gochujang-dressed daikon slaw, Army Stew mix (complete with tteokbokki), melted cheddar and mozzarella.
The other standout I think many meat-lovers should make a beeline for is the Bulgogi Cheesesteak (pictured top left, $8.50) which has a generous amount of the grilled sweetish sliced beef, sautéed onions and capsicums as well as two kinds of melted cheeses packed into a baguette.
“Seoul In A Sandwich” is one of two new dining concepts launched by the 35-year-old Seoul Garden Group that owns Halal-certified Korean restaurants: “Seoul Garden Buffet” and “Seoul Garden Hot Pot”. The other is “Two Hana” which is a Korean-Western café located on the ground level of the same mall. Helmed by Head Chef Jordin (who previously held the same position at “Joo Bar”), you can enjoy a wide variety of dishes, desserts and drinks that reflect the fusion of cultures there.

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Can't cook to save my life but boy, can I eat! 😄 (I pay for all my meals unless otherwise stated)

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