Last night I picked Dan up from his office down town and we grabbed a quick bite from this amazing little spot in Korea town. This place was SO authentic, it completely brought me back to living in Korea the summer of my Junior year in college. At the time I was a pescatarian (ate fish but no meat) and that made it extremely difficult to find Korean dishes I could actually eat. Enter, bibimbap. This dish is served in a thick, heavy cast iron cowl that is actually heated under intense flames. It’s made of rice and veggies like shiitake mushrooms, carrots, sprouts, zucchini, broccolini, and typically has a raw egg cracked on top (although I went without the egg last night to stick on my vegan diet). The best part about the dish is that the bowl is so hot, that it crisps the rice at the bottom and, when you mix everything together, it cooks the veggies for you and keep your meal warm the entire time you’re eating it. It’s so damn good.
Another fun experience you receive when dinning in a Korean establishment is all of the little “appetizers” they bring out before your meal even arrives. Last night’s pre-meal goodies included seaweed soup, kimchi, pickled bean sprouts and various others shown below:
I’m not entirely sure what most of the menu said, or what any of the signs in the restaurant meant, but that made our dinning experience all the more authentic! We even remembered how to say “Thank you” in Korean, which really surprised our server (who was also probably the owner and the chef!)