The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Scrumptious Korean @ Arisu Korean Restaurant (Tsim Sha Tsui), Hong Kong

It had been a long time since we last ate Korean food, and hubby had a hankering for it. We were in Tsim Sha Tsui on Sunday, and a quick internet search for good Korean food in the area yielded Arisu, which apparently got a special mention in the 2013 Michelin Guide. It is located in a little side street seemingly popular with the locals in search for a good bite that is more affordable than what is available at the nearby touristy shopping areas.

A relatively spacious dining room...:

... with an aquarium full of crabs near the entrance. I must admit that it didn't immediately occur to me that the crabs weren't for consumption:

The decor was rather average and nothing to speak of, but it was clean and the tables weren't too close together. The service also was nothing to speak of, but we got attended to just fine (although our tea cups weren't refilled when emptied). A few of the waitstaff were Korean, probably working on a minimal wage, but they weren't too grumpy or sloppy in their work. There were two menus given to us: the full a-la-carte menu and the more affordable lunch menu. Many of the dishes in the lunch menu were almost half the price of the same dishes in the full menu, and the serving sizes were no different. The food was quite cheap in general, and the quality was decent. I do prefer Myung Ga which was a bit more pricey with smaller serving sizes but the service and atmosphere was nicer and the food was a bit better.

It is not a Korean meal if banchan was not served. It didn't seem that banchan is refillable at this restaurant:

The boy wanted Fried Rice with Seafood and Vegetables from the lunch menu (HK$55). Tasty but a bit too salty for my liking. Short-grain rice was used, which was a bit of a novelty from the usual long-grained fried rice done elsewhere in HK:

The standard dish I always order when trying out a new Korean place, Dolsot Bibimbap (hot stone pot rice, HK$55 from the lunch menu). This was served with raw beef slices which gets cooked by the hot stone pot as you stir the rice. I especially liked the crispy burnt rice at the bottom:

Seafood Ddeokbokki (HK$100 from the a-la-carte menu). It had been over two years since we last ate this delightful spicy rice cake dish, and hubby was seriously missing it. Deliciously chewy with a bold spicy sauce:

Another Korean staple that we always order, Haemul Pajeon (seafood pancake, aka Chijimi, HK$100). A generous portion, slightly greasy but delicious. Hubby thought it was a little undercooked but I thought it was just right:

Arisu is a solid choice for good affordable Korean food in Tsim Sha Tsui. We left with very full bellies but only a small dent in the wallet.

Arisu Korean Restaurant
3rd Floor, H8,
8 Hau Fook Street
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel. +852 2369 8008

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