Korean pop may finally be inducing eyerolls among many of us, but Bangkok’s enduring love affair with Korean food is far from waning. A quick trip to the always bustling Korea Town on Sukhumvit Soi 12 just confirms this. On our last visit to one of the star attractions here, Kaborae, the staff had to lead us all the way to the third floor, because thanks to the faithful patronage of Thais and Koreans, the bottom two floors were already full of friends having festive eating and drinking parties. All the wooden tables are equipped with grill stoves and chimney hoods overhead and the walls are crowded with Korean knick knacks and autographs from their celebrity clientele. While they do a variety of dishes like soups and cold noodles, it’s really just the barbeque dishes that are worth writing home about. The green tea gal-bi (pork ribs marinated with green tea) and yang-nyum gal-bi (beef ribs marinated with spices, B450) are both well-flavored and tender, and the waitstaff is happy to grill the meat up at your table for you if you’re not used to DIY cooking. Unfortunately, for the most part, the excitement ends with the barbeque dishes. The kimchi jige (kimchi soup with pork and tofu) is just a sour broth, far from the thick and flavorful soup it should be. Even the usually fool-proof favorite, the dol sot bibimbab (stone-cooked rice with beef, egg and vegetables) can often be disappointing. The components are all there, including the nice raw egg on top, but the bowl is not always as hot as it needs to be to cook the rice through and give you the desirable crispy layer on the bottom. Still, there is the lightning fast service, quite an achievement in a restaurant packed with three floors of diners. The other small highlight is Makkoli (unrefined rice wine) which is a suitable replacement for dessert. Actually, it’s just regular Korean makkoli, except carbonated and served in a can, but it cuts through the heavy dinner nicely. Oh, and a word of clarification: Kaborae is a sister restaurant of Miang Ga, situated just a block away, so don’t go expecting two entirely different dining experiences.
|Address:||Kaborae, 1/F, Sukhumvit Plaza, 212/14 Sukhumvit Soi 12, Bangkok, Thailand|
|Price Range:||BB - BBB|
|Opening hours:||daily 10am-10:30pm|
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