Date: Friday night, after work.
Participants: My big boss, the manager, big boss's bright but bratty son, and me.
Location: Big Korean resto that recently opened under new management.
Yah! Let's eat dinner! I have to say, that one thing I enjoy very much about Jane having joined our school, is that our getting together and going out for a meal or a couple drinks has increased GREATLY! Before, we went out maybe five times a year, usually after Market Days, and then maybe just one other time celebrating a new employee or Christmas or something. Well Jane seems to like to go out on Fridays, and I DIG that!
So this past Friday we went in search of a restaurant we'd been to probably a couple years ago. It was interesting- the pork was cooked along with a huge amount of kimchi on these large domes, as opposed to the usually flat grill. I was amazed at my boss's son ability to recall where the place was, even after all that time! Unfortunately, the restaurant seems to have gone belly-up. So I suggested we try another restaurant we've been to once before - again, ages ago. Our first visit was disappointing, so we never went back, but recently the place was re-opened all sparkly, expanded, and under new management, so we decided to give it another chance.
First up, some of the panchan.
Mmmmm. Shredded greenery - I'm going to say leeks - in a vinegarry brine, onions and wasabi in more tart sauce, chopped salad in a goopy green dressing, thin slices of "mu" - (daikkon in Japan) white raddish in a pink sauce, ubiquitous garlic, and sesame oil with hunks of salt.
(I didn't do a great job of photographing all the stuff. It only occurred to me halfway through the meal!)
I know this looks like a big red mess, but it's actually a crab - small and raw and smothered in spicy red sauce. This didn't do anything for me. (Except burn my mouth off.)
Yook hwe! (Beef carpaccio) This is raw beef half frozen and cut into long rectangular strips, marinated with salt, sesame oil, green onions, chili pepper, garlic, and tossed with julienned Asian pears or cucumbers and topped with a raw egg yolk. This photo is before the tossing. I'm a little surprised I like this stuff. I remember in high school, my first encounter with smoked salmon shocked me "It's RAW!" But raw is good. Raw beef - good! Raw horse, though, not my cup of tea.
At first we ordered the "samgyupsal" - or pork belly. It wasn't good. Second up, though, we scored with some marinated pork attached to a bone at one end.
In the foreground is some delicious kimchi and some even more delicious mushrooms. I had three bowls of mushrooms! The meat's just been placed on the grill. Let's cook it up.
Mmmmmm. Let's wrap it up!
Mmmmm mmmm mmmm! Here we have our meat bundled up with some kimchi, garlic, soybean paste, onion in wasabi, and sliced greenery. Pop it in your mouth. Yumtastic!
Finally, our meal was rounded off with cold noodles. Most times, when we go out for a grilled dinner, people either opt for a bowl of rice with a bubbling pot of denjang jjigae - soybean paste soup with tofu, or mool naeng myun - cold buckwheat noodles in ice with egg, fruit, a little meat and vegetables.
This was delicious with its slushy ice, chewy noodles, and tangy broth.
Overall, we had a good dinner. We shared a little soju, and cheers-ed to hopefully finding a new teacher (or teachers?) soon. We're all exhausted. But full!