There are only a handful of Korean restaurants in Bangalore. We heard that ‘Hi Seoul’ was the best of the lot and decided to give it a go. Located in Kalyan Nagar, ‘Hi Seoul’ is fairly easy to find. Climbing a flight of stairs leads into a house converted into a restaurant.
The décor is very simple and exudes a ‘homely vibe’. As you settle down, you are promptly handed an illustrated menu.
Korean food newbies will find the English descriptions of the dishes in the menu very helpful, and will help ease the ordering process.
We decided to order Gimbap (Korean seaweed rolls), Haemul Pajeon (pancake with vegetables, shrimp and squid), Chicken lollipop, Bimbimap (hot rice served with an assortment of veggies and meat) and Ddukbaegi Bulgogi (marinated beef hot pot). Within ten minutes of placing the order, the dishes began to arrive. Our server pushed along a trolley and started placing an assortment of side dishes, typical to a Korean meal, such as pickled radish and cucumber, caramelized peanuts, spinach, potato, egg rolls and kimchi. All the sides were really good, we were pleasantly surprised by the caramelized peanuts.
Gimbap was the first dish to arrive. Rows and rows of rolls were neatly laid out on the plate. Gimbap tastes very similar to sushi, which is typically filled with seafood and vegetables. Gimbap instead was filled with meat and vegetables. It was delicious!
Next came Haemul Pajeon, a large yellow pancake with vegetables and seafood. It was served with soy sauce. Crispy on the outside and soft in the middle, it is akin to a Korean version of the South Indian Utthapam. Again the taste was spot on.
The chicken lollipops, were fried, coated in a semi sweet sauce and sprinkled with sesame seeds. It was served on a bed of shredded cabbage and spring onions. The crunch on biting into the lollipop was resounding, oh was it crispy! It was my favourite dish of the lot.
Next up was Bibimap, you are served rice, meat, sauce, an assortment of colourful vegetables and egg in a searing hot bowl, a pretty visual. To eat the dish you have to mix the contents of the bowl together. You are left with an explosion of flavour in every bite. My only minor complaint would be that it was slightly lacking in salt. Addition of soy sauce seemed to solve this problem. The final dish was Ddukbaegi Bulgogi, a meat and noodle soup, It was served with some sticky rice. Our bellies were full by the time this dish arrived. It was a simple soup dish, tasty, however underwhelming in comparison to the other dishes.
Overall the dishes were really good, portions are massive and the service is speedy. The only downside is that if you have a sweet tooth, they don’t have any desserts on the menu. However they do serve a complimentary plate of cold watermelon at the end of the meal.
With value for money and delicious offerings, this is a place you’ll want to go back to!