27 Jan 2010

melbourne hwaro korean bbq

I was never one to be interested in Korean history, culture of even food. Heck, the only food I know Koreans eat is kimchi and bimbap (from tutor who speaks fondly of it). Since my friends have been eating Korean BBQ and I've seen blog posts for it, I decided to try Korean BBQ!

I txted Thangstahh and asked Murasaki about the Korean BBQ places they've ate it. Turns out the ones they've dined in were teppanyaki style. We have all the teppanyaki hot plates at home and my parents (who watch way too much Korean dramas) wanted to try the drama way - BBQ-ing the meats over coal or fire. I did a quick google search and Hungry Hamster did a review of a Korean BBQ restaurant which had what we all had in mind. I promptly made the bookings and Hwaro it is!


As my family eat dinner quite early, I booked at 5 PM which is the time they open for the dinner service. Don't know if it is because we were the first ones there, but we had TERRIFIC service. The waiters and waitresses were all professionals and knowledgeable! We weren't being hurried about what to order and they gave great suggestions.


The interior was extremely orderly, neat and clean. It gave me kind of a high class restaurant feel, especially the high chairs I was sitting on.

Each table has a wooden board (for the BBQ pot) and set out dishes and on top of each table was a ventilator (?) exhaust fan (?). The ventilator thing sucks up all the smoke, so the atmosphere won't be smoky and you won't leave the shop with BBQ scented clothing.


Each table also has one of these red buzzers. It's like the aeroplane staff assistance button. Click on it and a waiter or waitress will appear right before your very eyes (only the flight attendants are so damn slow). It makes a door bell ringing noise and it's pretty loud...a bit embarrassing.

Bong-bong @ $3

There was a selection of drinks from wine to cocktails to your average everyday drinks. I chose a Korean drink called Pear Punch at first however changed my mind when the waitress told me what a bong-bong was. Bong-bong is a sweet muscat (think grapes) flavoured drink with floating pieces of muscat. The taste is very familiar.

Korean dumplings @ $12

Unlike Chinese dumplings, Korean dumplings are flat. It had a vegetarian filling consisting mostly of cabbage. I liked the thin and crispy dumpling skin.

A slice of seafood pancake @ $15

All the bloggers who've been to Korean restaurant have suggested Korean pancakes are a must order, so we ordered one HAHA. Without the sauce, the pancake is rather doughy and tasteless, however once you dip it into the accompanied sweet sipping sauce, the whole flavour changes!

A selection of side dishes (included)

Didn't touch the kimchi or the spicy shredded lettuce, nor the blanched bean shoots. However I think I am strangely addicted to the fermented soy beans! I thought they were Japanese natto, but its not. The soy beans are sweet and chewy.

Scotch fillet @ $18.90, Mushrooms @ $5

The waitress bought out our ordered meat and started to BBQ it for us. We didn't have to a thing! Just sit and wait to be served. When the meat was cooked we were then asked to start eating. Felt so good to just sit there and wait to be served!

Thigh fillet (chicken) @ $15.90 (?)

Unlike the beef, the chicken was marinated. However when BBQ-ed, both have a tempting aroma and taste.

Walked out spending $100, although my dad complained about the 15 minute walk to and from and the small portioned food, I think he secretly liked it XD

Can't wait to the next visit! Although Korean BBQ over teppanyaki is slightly cheaper, I don't think it will be as tasty as flame grilled!


Melbourne Hwaro Korean BBQ

562 Little Bourke Street
Melbourne, VIC 3000

Phone: (03) 9642 5696