Friday, January 4, 2013

Korea House

Address: 1465 South State Street, Salt Lake City, Utah 84115. 801.487.3900.

Review: Korean cuisine represents the confluence of a food I know relatively little about, and tastes I dearly love. The heat, the sweet, the sour, the salt. So good.

My buddy Dan and I went in search of some good Korean, and the Korea House got the nod today. Upon entering, Gangam Style filled the restaurant and a boy was dancing that ridiculous horsey dance Psy popularized heaven only knows how. After Gangam Style ended, the child stopped galloping and nondescript Korean music ensued, as did the food. I ordered osam bulgogi (i.e., spicy Korean bacon and squid). Surf and turf, baby.

Our meal came with a number of sides, including the best kimchi I've ever tasted (more on this later).

The osam bulgogi was a beautifully savory dish. The Korean bacon is bacon like pancetta is bacon: sort of but not quite. It doesn't have the smokey quality of American bacon, but it is pork belly nonetheless, and pork belly can never be anything but money. The squid had that chewy-tender quality of well cooked squid (it could have been a little more tender, but nothing's perfect). The onions and garlic added a savory earthiness that did not overpower either the Korean bacon or the squid. The sauce was all chiles and luscious oil. Just an enjoyable dish. And, while there wasn't as much heat as I would have liked, there was enough to balance out the dish.

The sides. Oh, the sides. There was some seaweed, some broccoli, some yada, yada, yada, and then there was the above-referenced kimchi. Tender, salty, spicy, acidic, and yet amazingly fresh for a fermented dish. Best I've ever tasted, although my experience with kimchi is admittedly limited. 

Mmm, can't wait to go back and try more dishes.

Rating: 7.5/10 (5/10 is average).

Korea House on Urbanspoon

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