Tag Archives: Korean food

Korean BBQ lunch at Sam Won Garden

The Southern equivalent of Maginhawa St. in Teachers Village, Quezon City would probably be Aguirre Ave. in B.F. Homes Parañaque.

In a gist, Teachers Village in Quezon City is one of the three major residential areas in the Diliman district.  Maginhawa St. is a major road that cuts through Teachers Village, Sikatuna, and U.P. Village.  For some reason, maintaining these three subdivisions as strictly residential areas was never strictly implemented.  This resulted in a mixed-use subdivision, primarily residential interspersed with all kinds of commercial establishments.  (You name it: printing shops, restaurants, laundry, hardware stores, a grocery, factory outlets, low-rise office buildings, etc.)  I have heard someone sarcastically remark that one can find the entire universe in here.  Maginhawa St. has always been a notable place in Diliman because of its restaurants and bars.

The same applies for Aguirre Ave. in B.F. Homes, Parañaque.  B.F. Homes was intended to be a purely residential area.  Over time, through lax implementation I suppose, it evolved into a mixed-use subdivision very much like Teachers Village.

ANYWAY… One of the Korean restaurants that I have read about in food blogs like The Sugar Bug, and Southbound.ph, and ClicktheCity was Sam Won Garden.   (The family was looking for a new Asian restaurant for Easter lunch other than our usual Chinese and Japanese fare.)

**Disclaimer: This probably should not count as a real restaurant review, in my opinion.  I usually research on how to “attack” exotic cuisines before I try out such restaurants.  If the restaurant serves authentic cuisine and is owned  by someone of that nationality, I try to find out if there are any meal-related customs/rituals that have to be performed.  Manners…  I also look up the most popular dishes and the recommended combinations.  I have tried Korean restaurants a few times–those instances I can count on one hand–and I still have not mastered which entrees should be eaten with the proper condiments.

In addition, I was only armed that day with my celphone camera.

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Korean Food Monday

I had a Korean lunch with my dad, brother and sister at a restaurant called MiJin in B.F. Homes, Parañaque.  They originally specialized in barbecqued meat but they started including bibimbap.  We “discovered” the restaurant through my sister; she and the owner’s daughter are classmates.

The restaurant clearly was one that catered to the thriving Korean community–more than the Filipinos–in B.F. because their complete menu was posted on a large print-out in Korean characters.  The waitress, a Filipino, gave us a translated albeit incomplete version of the menu.

Being rookies to Korean food we ordered bibimbap, kimchi jigae (kimchi soup) and upon my recommendation, samgyeopsal (barbecued pork).  We were at a loss on how to eat the samgyeopsal.  I’ve tried samgyeopsal beforeon two instances I decided to break my vegetarian restrictions–but I never learned the proper way to eat it because I would simply roll the meat, along with the other appetizers inside the lettuce leaf, dip it in ALL the accompanying sauces before shoveling it into my mouth.  (Barbaric eater, I know.)

Apparently, the the only non-meat toppings that go inside the rolled samgyeopsal are the garlic and onion.  This is the proper way to eat it.

The samgyeopsal and appetizer spread (picture on the left) was not as extensive as what I had in other Korean restaurants but I’m glad my lunch companions enjoyed it.

And just when I started to enjoy my kimchi jigae, my brother said, “You don’t taste the pork bits in the soup?”  As usual, I forgot to ask if there were meat bits in supposedly all-vegetable dishes.  Damn!

Dad, my brother and I were disappointed in the bibimbap.  We were expecting it to be served piping hot in a stone bowl with the egg newly cracked over the rice.  It was served in a plastic bowl that had a fake stone finish.  And we sorely missed the burned rice crust at the bottom of the bowl.  Forgivable though, because bibimbap was a recent addition to the menu so they did not have the infrastructure (stone bowls).

[EDIT]: What Dad and I were looking for was dolsot bibimbap, the variation served in the  hot stone bowl.

(from Wikipedia)

Nonetheless, our palates were very satisfied. The food did taste good even if it wasn’t executed according to our expectations. :)