I was plan-less this Friday evening, opening my schedule to whatever, and whoever presents a fabulous Friday plan. Earlier this day, I was actually asked to join a gala opening of an art exhibit, taho tasting and a Korean food trip. Confused in who I would say yes to and where I will go, I let serendipity do the deciding for the day until a foodie friend of mine Mike, who works at the same building as me made persuading moves throughout the day which made me finally say yes to a little foodie gathering over Korean dinner.
Michy , oh what a food lover, set up the little Korean dinner gathering for the PEX Gluttony society (whose members are equally as busy as I am) at this place called Kimbap Chonguk (Kimbap Heaven in English).
*Now, you might be asking what the heck does Kimbap mean? Kimbap is a typical Korean dish made of rice (bap) and other ingredients such as meats, veggies and scrambled egg then rolled in a seaweed wrapper (kim). Thus, seaweed wrapper (kim) + rice (bap) = KIMBAP!
|Small Korean Eatery named Kimbap Heaven|
|Wall sign says Kim-bap Cheon-guk|
The small Korean eatery can be found inside Amber Square, near Astoria Hotel in Escriva Drive, Ortigas, Pasig. Me and Mike actually had a hard time locating this since we saw a lot of Korean restaurants in that area with ubiquitous signs written in Hangul (God I got dizzy!) but after circling around Escriva Drive, we found Amber Square and based on photos I saw over the internet prior to leaving the office, I have distinguished this tiny place.
Michy, Ate Miriam and Kuya Mel arrived ahead of us thus started scarfing out Cheese Teokbokki and Gogi Mandu.Me and Mike dug in as soon as we sat down.
|3 pcs of Gogi Mandu (Php 180) left and it was delish! - Mandu is dumpling in Korean cuisine.|
|Cheese Teokbokki (Php 200)|
garrateok (cylindrical shapped rice cake) cooked with meat, sliced veggies, chili paste , served with boiled egg.
|Of course we were given free banchan. :)|
We decided to order more for we are famished! We ordered Samgyupsal, Japchae, Mixed Kimbap, and Kun Mandu.
|Japchae (Php 200) - |
Dangmyeon or sweet potato glass noodles, sauteed with meats and veggies seasoned with soy sauce and sugar to make a little sweet. Always a must have when dining in a Korean resto in my opinion.
|Mixed Kimbap (Php 180) - |
Kimbap with all the works! Pork and beef slices, salmon, veggies, scrambled eggs and cheese! Yummeh!
|Kun Mandu (Php 180) - Fried Mandu|
|Look! Vermicelli noodles together with minced pork. Their Mandu is divine.|
|Samgyupsal (Php 400) - Pork Belly about to be grilled!|
|One of the courteous staff who did the grilling for us.|
|Viola! Grilled pork belly!|
|Served with fresh veggies and gochuchang (korean chili paste)|
Food on the whole is affordable, and the quality is good. However, based on previous Korean cuisine feasting I did in some Korean restaurants in the Metro (Ye Dang, Kogi Bulgogi, Jang Gun, Seoul BBQ and Wang Hwang So Grill), The quality was a little, well just a little lower that the said places, though I'm actually not saying it is far less better than those. Considering the price and the service, and I'm telling you that the service is superb, Kimbap Cheonguk is a good place to start one's Korean cuisine sampling. Servers are Filipino who by the way are very much knowledgeable about Korean cuisine. Don't balk asking what is a certain dish you don't understand or ask what the name of the dish was. The ladies are actually more than willing to answer all your queries and seems like they are very much passionate about sharing the Korean cuisine to us Filipinos.
|Thanks Mike for driving me back home, Michy and Ate Miriam for the great convo and Kuya Mel for joining our never ending journey in finding good food.|
Escriva Drive, Ortigas, Pasig City