Sariwon Korean Barbecue in BHS Central in Taguig City
Duration : ~1-2 hours
Bummers : large crowds of customers
Sariwon Korean Barbecue hails from the land of bulgogi – North Korea, where Mrs. Bun-Im Koo founded this restaurant in the simple town of Sariwon. Mrs. Koo concocted a unique broth recipe that enhanced the flavor of bulgogi. Sariwon continued growing and it has taken even the market of South Korea. As a proof of its excellence, it has received an award from the Seoul Metropolitan Government as the “Best Korean Restaurant”. Since then, Sariwon has become one of the highest standards of a flavorful bulgogi.
When I was in South Korea, I made sure that I could have a taste of authentic bulgogi even from just one of the many hole in the wall restaurants there. Now, we don’t have to fly out to do so because Sariwon Korean Barbecue has recently opened its doors in the Philippines – in the food haven of Bonifacio High Street Central in Taguig City.
Only a few weeks young, Sariwon Korean Barbecue is starting to establish a consistent pool of patrons that are hooked with the taste of their bulgogi and galbi. We were fortunate to check out the restaurant for an evening of Korean dining experience.
When we entered the restaurant, we seated on a booth. The seats were definitely comfortable and the table was amazing. The table had a built-in smokeless grill where most of the food ordered were cooked right in front of you.
We were served with these tablets that turn into wet tissue when water is poured on them. I was amazed by it.
Upon ordering, we were served with a plateful of salad and their selection of banchan. A banchan is an appetizer-like dish, which is actually eaten with the main course and not as a starter. I just learned this from them because all this time, I thought they were appetizers.
They served us with Beansprouts, Sweet Potato and Pumpkin Mash, Spinach, Korean Anchovies, Radish Kimchi, and Cabbage Kimchi. A favorite is the Sweet Potato and Pumpkin Mash. It’s a perfect blend of sweet and creamy – like mashed potato made even better.
To begin with, we got the Seng Galbi (Php 780 per 280 grams), which is premium USDA Choice beef short ribs that are only cut upon ordering and grilled at the table. It is cooked as is, with no seasonings or marinate. But even without seasonings or marinate, the beef is juicy and flavorful – an assurance of its freshness and high quality, hence the price.
It is served with a side of lettuce and sesame leaves, which can be used to create a roll. It can be garnished with fresh garlic flakes and soybean paste. This dish is best eaten using your hands.
The Seng Galbi also has a trio of dips. One made with red wine, one is roasted sea salt, and the last is sesame oil. You can play around the order of how you dip until you achieve the perfect taste that you like. I want it sesame oil, then sea salt, then red wine. Try it!
The Dwaeji Galbi (Php 350 per 250 grams) is grilled pork loin that juicy, tender, savory, and simply delicious. It is a dish that you can easily relate because it has a similar taste with our pork adobo but with a Korean twist.
The Jeonju Bibimbap (Php 300) is rice dish that is topped with sauteed veggies and fresh egg. It should be mixed immediately upon serving but you need to be careful because the bowl is really hot. Chili paste is added to give the dish a zing. You can request the amount of chili paste to be lessened in case you have low tolerance to spicy food.
The Deungsim Yangnyeom Bulgogi (Php 495) is honey marinated thin slices of USDA beef that is cooked at the table. A certain sequence is followed in cooking this since Korean nationals want it that way. The beef is cooked first with some veggies. When these are cooked and eaten, the sweet potato noodles is cooked on the broth. But since Pinoys want everything all in, we asked that they cook it together. They make the sweet potato noodles fresh with every order.
Dining at Sariwon Korean Restaurant made the experience even better because they cook the food in front of you. And when I say they, I mean their waiters, unlike in other restaurants where you are the one left to cook. Since they know it better, the food is cooked perfectly. For instance for Seng Galbi, I like my beef medium rare so the juices are still inside the meat. They do it just right.
I commend their waiters for providing one of the best table-side services. I have been asking a lot of questions and I am glad that they know the answers. Dining at Sariwon Korean Restaurant is not only filling your belly with food but it is a gastronomic travel where you get a chance to learn about Korean dining.
It was a rainy night so it was a perfect time to have a glass of cocktail. We had the Sangria Soju (Php 195), a blend of apples, oranges, and lemons immersed in a perfect concoction of red wine and soju.
We ended the meal with a serving of a traditional Korean dessert, Sikhye (Php 60). Sikhye is made with malt and rice. I was told that this dessert is a fruit of 10 hours of preparation to get the perfect merging of malt and rice. It is definitely a breathe of fresh air when it comes to desserts.
Sariwon Korean Barbecue
Bonifacio High Street Central
7th cor. 29th Street., Taguig City
Open daily, from 11AM to 11 PM
For the latest updates, check out their facebook page.
Spread some awesome..ness..