Tuesday, April 12, 2016

meh-hwa bahn-jeom (매화반점)

meh-hwa bahn-jeom (매화반점)
서울특별시 광진구 동일로18길 96; also 서울특별시 광진구 자양4동 4-11
tel02) 462-1939

what was consumed: northern chinese cuisine! grilled lamb skewers, tomato and egg, sweet and sour fried egg plant, sautéed pork in black bean sauce wrapped in tofu skins, seafood fried rice

chinese food in korea? yes! there's quite a variety considering the number of koreans who live in korea and have returned to their homeland as well as the number of chinese who've since relocated to korea. near konkuk university, there's a collection of a bunch of these places and many of them specialize in grilled lamb skewers. k told me that lamb skewers prepared in the way that they do at meh-hwa bahn-jeom is characteristic of northern chinese cuisine. i've done zero research about that an am taking k's word for it.

friends and i trekked out to the area in front of konkuk university and settled in at meh-hwa bahn-jeom. k understood this place to be the best. that they seemed to have a constant flow of patrons confirmed at least the popularity. we ordered a bunch of chinese dishes, many of which had fried components and all were just a little bit sweet. of course, despite my aversion to sweet things, i was not deterred and tried each of the dishes.

but the main attraction was the grilled lamb skewers. at each table, there is a space for coals (in our case, wood-fire). the lamb is served, raw, in small pieces, already placed on metal skewers. on top of the grill, there's a little contraption upon which you place the special skewers. this is important because the contraption, moving left and right and left and right about an inch in distance every few seconds, is what rotates the skewered lamb. i.e., we place the skewer on the grill at the speed at which we'd like to consume and then, in a few minutes, they are grilled all the way around! brills. and then, when ready, we dip each bite off of the skewer into a dry mix of spices (including lots of cumin which, i understand, is supposed to cut some of the game-y flavor in lamb that people do not prefer) and enjoy! super delish.

i've seen a few other places offer this sort of meal, but i was happy to enjoy it at meh-hwa bahn-jeom. let's go again!

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