Despite my plans to hit a new bibimbap joint on the north end of town (I’ve been anticipating that visit for awhile now!) the driver of our crew’s stomach rumbled too aggressively for him to patiently drive 20 minutes to our planned spot. Instead, he insisted we try a “really good new restaurant!” in Koreatown. Bah.
Location: 584 Bloor Street West
I’ve already written about Chodang, but this picture is too delicious not to share:
Love.It was very quiet when we entered the restaurant – there was nobody attending the front, so it took awhile to get seated. We ended up ordering 2 bibimbaps (one with pork belly), soon tofu soup, sashimi, and grilled mackerel.
The soup was weak – I’ve been utterly spoiled by Chodang and their fresh, delicious bowls. Compare the pictures - there's a clear winner!
The salmon sashimi was good – fresh, and neatly piled. We enjoyed the grilled fish – although one person found that it was too salty for their taste, I was fine with it. The amount of pork belly given on the bibimbap order was not really worth paying the extra bit, so I’d say skip it. I think they’d be better off substituting the beef in the bowl in favour of giving you more rather than just tossing a bit of extra pork belly on top.
Overall, the bowls were decent but not great. Head over to Etsu or Hana Korea for better valued bowls.
The banchan spread was pretty good – I particularly liked the jalapeno, mm.
I’ve gone to Chodang so much that the owner swiftly pops a few plates of kkongnamul (soybean sprout side dish) – given the fact that I’m always on the go and it's not within the downtown core, this is a testament to my addiction. It was a super hot weekend, so on top of the usual mushroom soon tofu, we ordered a bowl of cold noodles in soy-based soup, kkong guksu:
…that went well with my usual treat:
While refreshing, I don’t think that I’ll be ordering the kkong guk su again – I am truly addicted to their soon tofu soup. The soy broth was very tasty, but the noodles weren’t that great. I think that, while not traditional, it would be better with buckwheat noodles like Naeng Myun. That just means that I owe Cho Sun Ok another visit!