Saturday, July 14, 2012

Donwoori, West Melbourne

It's not news to people that I love Korean food, in general. Though, I've always had this Love/Hate relationship with Korean BBQ. I LOVE BBQ-ed meat for all its fatty, charred, tender goodness. But gawd, do I hate smelling like a chimney. Ohhhh, the things we put ourselves through for the love of food.

There are a number of places that Melburnians would go in the CBD for Korean BBQ. But, I'm sure most would agree that the easiest thing to do is to go to the row of shops on Victoria Street (directly in front of Victoria Market) where you have 4 different Korean BBQ joints all lined up together, ever so conveniently.

This time, I decided to check out Donwoori for the first time (after realising my usual haunt of Woo Ga hasn't been as good the past few times I've been there).

Complimentary banchan

Before, one of the main reasons why I LOVED Woo Ga was because I felt like they served one of the best Kimchis in Melb. Really. I love it so much that I would always ask for extra serves. But, I must say that the Kimchi here was just as good!

Not too spicy, slightly sweet and most of all, still CRUNCHY to bite. Try etttt... The pickled cucumbers and onions with soy was a nice complement to the meal too.

Kimchi Jjigae

Very nice!!! Good depth of flavour and nice balance between pork broth and tomato base. Loved every sip

Loved the fatty pork in the soup... Wee-hee~

Spring onion salad with gochujang

Always my favourite salad to go with Korean BBQ. Slightly sour and refreshing.

Seafood Spring Onion Pancake

Pancake was not bad. Flour was slightly chewy but I liked it. Not as much seafood as you would get in other places but I can never say no to these babies.

Now, on to the grilled meats...

Ox Tongue

Top side beef

Marinated Flank Beef

Top grade beef rib

SUPER tough, for some reason. I am quite sensitive to tough meat and found the one here as well as Woo Ga just the same.

I think when it comes to beef ribs, it's better to have the marinated version to break the meat down a little and make it more tender.

Overall, BBQ was quite good (apart from the beef rib) and so was the soup and pancake we had. BUT, there is another place that I love going to more for Korean BBQ. Best thing about this place, though, was that it was really cheap! We spent $19/person (for 4 of us). We weren't super full, but it was just nice.

So far, I've only eaten at 3 out of the 4 Korean restaurants along the strip, but must honestly say that as of now: Donwoori > Woo Ga >>> Hallah.

Again, I'm referring to BBQ meat, not the cooked dishes. Though, this might change in the future. Who knows, Woo Ga might find their mojo and reclaim the top spot once again (in the Victoria St Korean Restaurant category).

BUT, all of it still doesn't beat Madang in Sydney. I didn't get a chance to blog about it, but it was SERIOUSLY good. Recently, my friend Adrian mentioned that he went to a newly opened Madang in Melbourne and I'm not sure if it's in any way affiliated to the Sydney one but I'm really keen to try!!

Hope you're all doing awesomely swell, wherever you are. Happy eating!! =)

Donwoori on Urbanspoon

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