Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Bull Bar - Brisbane CBD

During the last few years, there has definitely been an exponential increase in Korean restaurants in Brisbane. Some, like Madtongsan are insanely popular and have managed have multiple branches around Brisbane. 

However, feeling like trying out something different, we opted to try out Bull Bar, which is situated between Madtongsan I and Madtongsan II, on Elizabeth Street.

After going down stairs, we were greeted warmly and given a table rather promptly. I note that despite it being rather late in the lunch hour, (1.30pm).

Our banchan came out with our entree. They had kimchi and konjac. The kimchi wasn't too spicy, but on the flip side, it was also a bit bland compared to other ones I've had. The konjac though was cool and refreshing. I liked how it was drenched in sesame oil which gave it quite a fragrant flavour.

Our shared portion of  takoyaki came next. It was doused in mayonnaise and takoyaki sauce, with bonito flakes and lettuce. The sauce overpowered any taste that the takoyaki could have had, and the moisture from the lettuce and sauce also ensured that it was a bit soggy. I've definitely had better takoyaki at other stores.

My first companion ordered the Bulgogi Deob Bap, which was a stir fried marinated beef with rice. As you can see from the picture though, the beef had quite a lot of water content still left in it, which ran onto the plate, making it not as appetising as it could have been. Nevertheless, he appreciated the texture of the beef, and complimented the freshness of the salad. 

My other companion ordered the Raw Beef Bi Bim Bap in the stone bowl. She also found it a bit bland, and the heat in the pot was insufficient to fully cook the beef, as you can see in the other photo, but nevertheless it had a decent amount of sauce and veges to give the rice sufficient flavour. She let be try a bit of it, and I really enjoyed the crispy rice at the bottom of the bowl. I think it would have been tastier with a bit more beef though.

I ordered the spicy beef ramen, which was quite a conservative choice. I liked how the beef complemented the shittake mushrooms, but other than that the ramen tasted like the regular korean ramen that you can get at supermarkets. It was cooked to a nice texture yet I wouldnt say it was particularly different to what I could make myself at home. 

Other than that, we ordered a portion of Deep Fried Boneless Chicken. I found it to be rather unsalted, but fried quite nicely. The chicken was definitely crispy and had a crunchy skin, but was far less oily than the ones at KFC. On the down side though, I think someone forgot to sprinkle the salt on the chicken, so we had to ask for some. It came with a sweet dipping sauce, but we preferred it without.

Price Range: $10 - $20 per person

Taste: 6/10
Value: 7/10
Service: 7/10
Environment: 8/10

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