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What’s Cooking?

By Nathaniel Keefer

Before we get too far into this, I want to clarify: this is not a cooking guide.  I will not be telling you how to make food at home, or how to make that special dish for your mom’s birthday, not a chance.  I can barely make toast.

whats cooking

I was just trying to make scrambled eggs...  https://pixabay.com/en/photos/burnt/

Instead, this is a restaurant review.  Welcome to “What’s cooking?”  I’ll be talking about one of my favourite subjects: Food, and you get important information on a place or chain before you spend your hard-earned dough, it’s a win-win situation.  Today’s subject under scrutiny: Korean barbeques.

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Toast is supposed to look like this, right?  http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=108675&picture=burnt-toast

I will assume you know what barbeques are, and I will assume you passed geography and know where Korea is (pretty sure it’s in Africa), so we’ll move on to what happens when they come together.

Here’s how it works: each table has a grill built into it, complete with the dials to adjust the heat and so on.  You’re given menus as per usual, and you order items off of it.  Similar to a sushi restaurant, it is an all-you-can-eat format, with each person paying a fee for the whole meal.  You can get various types of meats, and vegetables, as well as cold condiments (green beans, coleslaw, etc.) for the other dishes.

Here’s where things get funky: the food comes to the table uncooked!  No, the kitchen didn’t shut down, this is the whole premise of this style of restaurant: you cook the food yourself using the grill at the table.

Meat in the progress of cooking. You can see the various condiment dishes around the table, as well as...a metal spit bucket? https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Korean_barbeque-Galbi-14.jpg

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This allows a certain amount of freedom with the cooking process, as you can cook the meats to your preferred level of “doneness,” as well as being able to grill the vegetables.  If you’ve never had grilled vegetables, you have no idea what you’re missing.

Pictured: The face of bliss only achievable with grilled zucchini.    http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=15738&

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Anyways, that’s the rundown.  It’s definitely an interesting experience.  Did I enjoy it?  Well…um…it was definitely an interesting experience anyways. 

Don’t get me wrong, there was nothing wrong with the food or the service, but I started this article by saying I’m no good at cooking.  The idea of paying to go to a restaurant so that my family and I can then proceed to do the cooking just seems ridiculous.  It was rather annoying to have food right in front of me and know I couldn’t eat it until I gave it ten minutes on the grill.  Yet, it’s a cool concept, and I would encourage you to try it at least once.  You might really enjoy it.

Intrigued?  Here’s a few places nearby that you can check out:

Korean Grill House (Chain-including Toronto &Richmond Hill):   http://koreangrillhouse.com/

Chako Barbeque(Mississauga):   http://www.chakobbq.com/ 

Kasai Grill House (Toronto):    http://www.kasaigrillhouse.com/ 

Thanks for reading!  I’m Nathaniel Keefer.  May all your meals be delicious!