By Net Geek
Next stop on the foodie front was Madang; an inconspicuously located yet remarkably popular Korean BBQ restaurant. Arriving around 7pm on a Thursday night meant we ended up with a wait of around 20 minutes; but the wait was rewarded with some delicious eats! Unfortunately I only had my iPhone on me at the time and the restaurant lighting was dim, making the quality of the shots a tad grainy.
The restaurant is down an alley way off Pitt Street; easily spotted by the large gathering of people in a rather odd place. The crowd seemed to be cool cucumbers in their early 20’s; sitting on random milk crates or leaning on the alleyway walls while eagerly awaiting their turns.
Alley way dining Korean styles!
Once in, we sat at our barbecue mounted table and took a peek at the menu while they brought out the usual complimentary sides and carefully placed the hot coals. The sweet boiled potato was definitely my favourite (as usual) and my friend was a fan of the kimchi.
Getting ready to cook some ox tongue
Side dishes! The potato is my personal favourite
To start we ordered green tea and the Yuk Hwe (frozen raw beef salad - $17 for an entree portion). The waiter was attentive and polite, which is always a plus; especially in these casual restaurants where often the staff are overly rushed. The green tea on the other hand was a let down. It was merely bagged tea given to me in a cup of hot water; not exactly worth the $3 in my honest opinion. The Yuk Hwe too came out quickly, not surprisingly as it is a raw dish, and after mixing it up and tucking in we were delighted by the julienne pears and sweet marinade combining with the savoury flavour of raw beef and raw egg yolk. To some it sounds daunting by description, but it is a definite must-try for any adventurous eaters new to Korean food.
Side dishes plus Yuk Hwe (on the right)
Since there was only two of us we ordered the ox tongue ($15) and premium sirloin ($23) to get us going. Once that was placed in front of us we decided that a seafood pancake ($22) might be necessary to fill our tummies adequately.
Meats and seafood pancake ready to go!
Served with a slice of lemon, the ox tongue was thinly cut and cooked very fast; good to begin nomming while we waited for our sirloin to cook. The two slices of sirloin appeared to be a nice colour, however after a quick sear on both sides I found the meat to be tough and it had not had the tough bits of grizzle cut off the edges. Once in my mouth the flavour of the meat was acceptable, however in general I would not have written home about this cut of sirloin and was not a big fan of its preparation considering the price.
Sirloin was a bit of a let down…
Luckily the seafood pancake was next to be consumed. The big pancake had a lovely crisp on the outside and was fluffy in the middle. The friend I was with favours this restaurant’s seafood pancake above all others in the CBD. In my opinion, the pancake and yuk hwe were the outstanding elements of the meal; whilst the barbecue was decent but nothing to write home about.
Wrapping it all up!
Overall, I left with a full stomach and loved the vibe of the joint. The atmosphere and feel is definitely one of its distinguishing factors; being tucked away in an alley, young clientele and a bustling ambience. These all make for a fun place to eat with friends. Perfect for young adults as a starting place for a night out on the town.
Madang Korean BBQ
Ph: +61 2 9264 7010
371A Pitt Street