Hidden within the busy streets near Tottenham court road – so well hidden in fact it took me a couple of times of passing it by to realize that what I was looking for was in plain sight – are these little Korean restaurants. Surrounded by hair dressers and various random shops, they have an oddly authentic charm. The space is cramped, but the prices are cheap. So just take a seat.
The walls were completely plastered with post its – memorabilia from previous customers. I dont know if this type of thing is a very korean thing to do – because I remember other Korean restaurants that take your polaroid picture and put it up on the wall. Humorously enough, my eye caught a little note on the wall saying “Isus te iubeste” – which means, in Romanian, Jesus loves you.
One needs to take into consideration that this place is very cheap (and small), and, as such, I would not say that the korean food is 100% authentic.
We went for the kimchi (perhaps the most well known dish from Korean cuisine, pickled spicy cabbage), as my sister has never tried it before. Our bellies ordered some bibimbap – another staple dish, rice with mushrooms, eggs, meat and some other veggies – and ghimbap – which is the Korean version of sushi, but generally with meat.
Why does this place not feel authentic (food wise)? The bibimbap is normally brought in a hot stone plate – and it all fries in front of you. Here, most probably due to the fact that the kitchen is small and does not have all the necesarry utensils – the bibimbap came in a metal plate, the egg already fried and the meat was actually cold. Despite this, the food was still quite good. Sure, the meat wasn’t a lot – and as carvnivors as we are, we need it by the buckets.
It was the first time I tried ghimbap. It was alright, nothing spectacular. But for a total bill of about 12 pounds, I must say I didnt expect my world to be rocked.