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Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Bulgogi Bros: No Relation to the Super Mario Bros.

A few months ago, a new restaurant opened up next door to our work. In typical Korean tradition, I've noticed that whenever businesses change hands, the entire building is gutted from head to toe and renovated. This was the case for the two-story building next door--it was gutted and revamped into a new restaurant, called Bulgogi Bros. Bulgogi stands for "beef" in Korean, so translated, it's literally the "beef brothers"!

South Korea has some of the most expensive beef prices in the world. So when you're out dining, eating beef can be quite pricey for the quantity that you receive. I am always keen on trying out new restaurants. Even though we knew our experience at Bulgogi Bros. would cost higher than average, we went anyways--hey, you gotta live a little, people!

Bulgogi Bros. is a couple steps up from your neighborhood bulgogi joint. The interior is nicely decorated and the decor is very modern and chic. Tables are nicely spaced apart, unlike the "I'm a sardine in a can" feeling you can get at some of the busier galbi and bulgogi restaurants. Check out the size of this restaurant from the exterior:

We made it in time for their lunch menu, which was not as expensive as their regular menu (28,000w/$28US for 200 grams of beef--that's less than half a pound!!). The manager of the restaurant spoke English and was very friendly. We ordered two kinds of beef, a shabu-shabu style and another kind cooked on your traditional grill. Some places require a minimum of two orders on galbi or bulgogi--I was surprised we were able to order one of each.

First up, how about a look at some side dishes?

This was our first time tasting white kimchi and we loved it. It's not spicy and more on the pickled side but sweeter in taste.

Here we have some pickled vegetables, regular kimchi, and a mashed sweet potato salad (they love this here) which was really good. It was so delicious (to say "this tastes delicious" in Korean, it's "mah-shee-saw-yoh") that I asked for seconds and thirds!

First up, our shabu-shabu style beef, cooked on a copper plate surrounded with beef stock. There wasn't a lot of beef, but it was very tasty:

After finishing the first style of beef, the copper insert had to be removed to be replaced by the regular bbq grill. Here we have Australian rib-eye patties (hence the price--Bulgogi Bros only uses the finest quality beef, according to Don, the manager dude) ready to be grilled:

Let's fast forward five minutes, shall we? Here are the rib eye patties on the grill, all four of them. If you combined the meat here you would have the size of one large hamburger patty!

Was it worth it you ask? Heck yeah! The rib eye cut practically melted in our mouths, it was so juicy and tender. I had to savor each bite so I nibbled at mine like a little rat to prolong my Bulgogi Bros. experience:

Each lunch order came with your choice of naengmyeon (ice noodles) or rice/soup. We opted for the naengmyeon...it was a great choice. Now that it's starting to get warm, naengmyeon just tastes so much better in the hot weather:

I forgot what this drink was called (somebody please help me) but it's a sweet drink we've had before (at our local samgyetang restaurant). It's usually served to you after you are finished your meal. Does anyone know? It's called shikhye and it's a sweet rice drink.

So, there you have it it. Our first Bulgogi Bros. experience. Although it was very good, the total bill came to 45,000w ($45US) for a lunch that left me longing for more food. The staff were friendly and the atmosphere was pleasant. If you want to dine at Bulgogi Bros., you can do so by visiting one of their various locations around Seoul. The Mokdong location is next to TGI Friday's and Dan Sushi.

Speaking of Super Mario Brothers, does anyone out there have a Nintendo DS Lite? I am always up for a round of Mario Kart DS if anyone is up for the challenge!


ej said...

samgyetang is a chicken soup
what you were served was a shikhye

ej said...

samgyetang is a chicken soup. what u were served was a shikhye, sweet rice drink

Sandra said...

That sounds so good, and the pictures look great.

Helena said...

I love naengmyun! Especially when I've been walking around in the hot sun.

Hmmmm... yeah, bulgogi is beef, but if I were doing a literal translation I would call it "fire meat." Does Fire Meat Brothers sound better?

Gdog said...

Sandra: it was verrryyy deelicious!

Helena: I agree with eating naengmyun on a hot day...definitely a great way to cool down.

Haha, Fire Meat Brothers does sound good, but personally I like "Beef Brothers" better...;)

Anonymous said...

They look amazing! What's more amazing is that you're able to enjoy many other Korean food. Americans I know (with exception of one couple) eat bulgogi only & nothing else.

George Bailey Sees The World! said...

Yeah, I've got a DS lite - I'll need your friend code though... I'm pretty bad at it so far, but it would be a kick to play against G-Dog.

Robert said...

So how much is a kg of mid-grade (let's say...sirloin) beef in SK these day ? US$30 ?

I don't get it....they rather either pay that $$$$ or eat less beef than importing US beef ?

Yeah I know about their fear of Mad Cow...but still 300 Mill Americans still eat it with abandon.....

And Americans fear UK beef hahahah

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