I first tried Korean food my freshman year of college and man is it just obscenely delicious. It’s right up there with my mom’s food (number one forever and always) and Indian on the list of foods I will completely stuff myself with to the point of sickness. Seriously, Korean’s know their way around flavors. So why am I going on about Korean food and how fantastic it is? This past Wednesday was Eric and my seventh year dating anniversary. So of course we had to celebrate with tons of delicious food and the only place we could think to provide that service was Downtown Oakland’s OHGANE Korean BBQ Restaurant.
I feel that a little bit of history is in order here, I didn’t find out about my gluten issues until my junior year of college and had not been to a Korean restaurant since then. I’m generally skeptical of any Asian food that relies heavily on soy sauce because that shit is snuck into everything and I’ve been bitten in the butt several times by it before. Because of this I asked my server to check that everything I ordered was gluten free and he assured us all of our food was safe. I am going to add the disclaimer though that ingredients can depend on food brands and food prep varies in every kitchen so if you have celiac please for the love of god proceed in eating any of the shown dishes with extreme caution.
We ordered mung bean jun and kimchi kimbop as appetizers. If I had to compare jun to anything it would probably be potato pancakes, but with a bit more of an earthy taste. Kimbop is similar to sushi in the way it’s presented, but the taste (I would argue) is completely different. Ours had this incredible spicy, pickled flavor from the kimchi. Not going to lie I ate the majority of the kimbop… but I had no choice they were too delicious to leave on the plate!
Oh, maybe I should also mention the ABSURD array of side dishes that came
with our food. I mean holy guacamole were there a ton, sixteen in all. There was an array of different kimchis, several vegetables prepared in various ways, and ones we had absolutely no idea about. We tried them all and the only one we weren’t overly fond of was the dried fish, which by their size I would guess were anchovies.
We ordered two main courses, kimchi stew for Eric and beef short rib stew for me. These came out literally boiling hot in their bowls, which was just way too cool. Eric’s soup was super kimchi-y and spicy. In fact, it was such a mouth burning, hiccup inducing spicy we were only able to finish about one cup each. My soup on the other and was quite mild. It had this incredible garlic-y, onion-y, beef flavor. I’m not talking about an out of the box beef broth flavor. Oh no, no, no, no I’m talking about the flavor of my mom’s homemade ox tail soup that could only be gotten by braising meat still on the bone for hours on end. Oh man, nothing can compare.
So to say the least dinner was delicious and we had an abundance of leftovers packed up for us. To top everything off at the end of our meal they unexpectedly brought us yogurt drinks (yakult I believe) which had a tangy, sweet taste to them. I loved them, Eric wasn’t thrilled so I drank both. Oops.
Well I hope you enjoyed this post, now go out and have your own Korean food adventure!