As far as blogging goes, I’ve been pretty rubbish recently. Considering how much time I spent on my MacBook Air, it’s embarrassing how little I’ve been writing. That being said, there are some things that you just have to write about and good food is one of them. This isn’t a comparison post as the title would suggest (did you like my play on words?) but more of a, “hey look at the awesome food I’ve been eating aren’t you jealous” post and I reckon you should be.
Manimal is the new kid on the block located on the hill across from Noksapyeong Station. I was sorely questioning my decision on having barbecue after such a late night out but figured I could stay hydrated with their freshly squeezed lemonade (W6,500), which did wonders. First up was the watermelon salad with feta and candied pecans (W13,500) which was a refreshing dish for the summer with a good balance of flavours I didn’t expect from a barbecue joint.
For mains and sides, my friend Hannah and I opted for the chicken which has been getting rave reviews (W14,500) and quarter rack of ribs (W15,000) which came with a side of pickled carrots. For sides, I made the executive decision and ordered the chipotle lime potato salad (W3,900) and the corn bread (W3,000) out of the slew of delicious options. I’m going to be honest here, I found the chicken a little on the… overly juicy side but my hangover might be to blame for this. When I brought home the leftovers and made some fried rice, it was pretty damn perfect. The ribs packed a good punch but I would probably opt for the chicken over the ribs next time. Manimal has some yummy looking side dishes and I think the stand out really was the potato salad. I could eat this salad forever and just get fat from carbo overload.
One of the owners John gave us a sampling of the Bananimal, their homemade banana ice cream, banana cake, banana crumble, banana custard, banana everything dessert which was deeeeeeeeeeeeelicious. Ugh. It was just so ridiculously good. I’d go back again just to have this and try out the brisket which is only served during dinner time.
Overall, great food, rustic space and this place will probably give Linus a run for his money.
Protip: The stairs heading up to Manimal are a fire hazard. Opt for flats, not heels ladies. And if you do, ease up on the cocktails or you’ll be in for a tumble.
2F, 455-33 Itaewon-dong, Yongsan-gu
T: 82 2 790 6788
Sometimes dining in Seoul is like standing in front of your closet thinking, damn, there’s nothing to wear. I am constantly thinking that there’s nothing really good to eat these days as there aren’t a whole slew of interesting restaurants that experiment with new flavours. Thankfully The Beastro isn’t one of them. Chef Matthew Chung has created a pretty solid menu at affordable prices for the discerning diner.
Yonny and I chose went over for lunch and opted for the 24 hour hanger steak (W20,000) which is cooked sous vide for, you guessed it, 24 hours before being served with an onion mustard gravy and chimichurri fries. For a not so great cut of meat, it’s really cooked beautifully. The meat falls apart in your mouth and is great with the crispy fries. Killed the whole thing in record time.
The bacon, leek and English pea pappardelle (W16,000) confused me a little. I could taste the bacon and I could see the English peas but the leeks seemed to have melted a little into the dish and overall I found it a bit on the salty side. The saving grace of this dish was the pasta. Homeboy does a damn good pasta and I would go back to check out the rabbit sausage pappardelle that they serve during dinner.
Having looked at the entire menu online, there are quite a few things I am interested in trying out, like the French Onion soup tart and the smoked pork cheeks. Chef Chung seems to have been inspired by several different cuisines to create twists on some classics which is always interesting to see. Definitely a fun menu and I reckon food should always be fun.
If you do see Matthew, please give him a hard time on his wine pours. I was given a stingy pour (by a new server) when I went, had to bat my eyelashes to get a little more and have been giving him grief ever since. I’m sure the pours have improved since.
2F 358-32 Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu
T: 82 2 334 2500