I seem to be on a Korean cuisine binge as of late. Well okay, the last two were Korean establishments (Honey’s Bistro & Borandsi Cafe) so it’s hardly a binge, but still, 3 in a row straight is a bit. Both my visits to Honey’s and Seoul Doogbaegi are directly influenced by Foodosphy (see his take on it here).
Kingsway is a busy street, stretching from Vancouver to Burnaby and you will find no shortage of eats of all kinds. Most of the Korean joints seem to be in Burnaby though, so it’s a little rare to find this one a couple blocks away from Knight in Vancouver. From the outside, it isn’t really flashy and doesn’t catch the eyes attention. I would have driven past not noticing it if we weren’t looking for it.
Margo and I arrived just before 10 after she came to pick me up, then consequently made me drive the rest of the way. Really, I know it’s just cause she doesn’t like to drive in Vancouver, I mean she even gets lost in her own city, Richmond. =p
Bright fluorescent lights beam down in the room, providing a stark contrast from the dark gloomy night outside. Inside it feels warm, inviting, and the server was quick to attend to us. There were two other tables, one was a couple sitting behind us and the other was two families sitting in the rooms.
Having read such good things about the seolleongtang, I knew I would be getting it. The last time I remember having a good ox bone soup was at Wang Ga Ma in Coquitlam, near the H-mart. Now I just had to decide what I wanted in it. Should I be boring and just get sliced beef? Boring… I needed some excitement, so I went for the Tripe, Tongue & Spleen w/ Flour noodle. A question about the Hangul spelling, why is it spelled differently? It seems there is no standard spelling and that people interpret it and spell it differently. Case in point is that Googling it will turn up “seolleongtang” but the menu here says “sul lung tang“.
While we waited for our orders, a bunch of banchan came out to keep us waiting. The usual suspects were here, kimchi, seaweed, potatoes, bean sprouts, and daikon. The potatoes were excellent, as was the kimchi. Home made for sure, and rated an 7.5/10 on my spice scale. 10 means I’m crying by the way. We were also served our rice in metal bowls, which I love because it keeps it hot for that much longer.
Coarse sea salt was provided on the table for the soup and other uses, but I found I didn’t need it nor want to add any to the soup when it came.
I enjoyed the creamy broth-soup that can only be made from ox bones, cooked for several hours or even a whole day to extract all the wonderful flavors from the bone and its marrow. A slight off-white and cloudy appearance is the norm, and is usually accompanied by green onions, rice, and side dishes. Most of the items were at the bottom, covered by the white thin vermicelli like noodles.
A bowl full of green onions. I used more than half of it…did I mention I like green onions?
Tongue! It was only till later that I realized that I had inadvertently ordered one of Shermans favorite things, tongue.
Margo had the Soondubu w/ Seafood. Oooo this was spicy since Margo requested that it be super spicy. I think there was a LOT of tofu in here and also an egg, which she broke the yolk of. <Nelson Muntz> HA HA. </Nelson Muntz>. Note that the soondubu link is to MaangChi, a very exceptional resource for all Korean food, shown to me by Andrea.
When our bowls were cleared away, she brought out some Sikhye for us. It’s a traditional dessert made from pouring malt water onto cooked rice and letting it ferment, to change the starch in the rice into sugar. Sometimes ginger and sugar can be added, but it’s just as good without flavoring.
At $8 each for dinner, considering the amount of food we had, that’s a pretty wicked deal. We both put down $10, feeling that it was worth way more for what we had just ate and so it was only right that we do so. Revisit? Yes.
The menu is scanned and up at Urbanspoon, follow this link to view it.