Introducing the Reader Review of the Week
In yesterday's post about the new restaurant Sage, I mentioned Jason Clevenger's excellent food blog, Fried Brain Sandwich. You should definitely give it a read, especially his post from last Friday -- and not only because he gives a shout-out to yours truly. Jason describes both his own experience with tacos al pastor at La Vallesana and his hilarious take on a piece of salmon he had at Eleven Eleven Mississippi.
But you don't need a food blog of your own to share your thoughts about St. Louis restaurants. As I've mentioned here a couple of times already, you can now post your own review of any of the restaurants in our restaurant guide. And you readers have been posting! To highlight your efforts, each week I'll select a review that I found insightful, funny or contrary enough to warrant your attention.
Real Korean restaurants in St. Louis are like Samuel Johnson's dog walking on its hind legs -- they may not be done well, but you are surprised to find it done at all. You expect the weird hybrid Chinese-Japanese-Korean buffet glop -- and, in fact, a couple wandered in while I was eating, asked for the buffet, and left when told there wasn't one -- but not a standalone Korean restaurant with the standard sponsored soju placemats and the TV in the corner tuned to a live Korean cable news channel. That was a real surprise.
What's even more surprising is that Seoul Garden is *good*. The menu covers a reasonable amount of ground. I had the rice cake and tofu strip appetizer and the spicy soup with beef and green onions. Both were very solid and tasty. The 5 little complimentary side dishes ("banchan") were all decent. All in all, a very good meal! If atmosphere is important to you, this is not the place. The decor is barebones (and I'm being charitable here) and my shoes' soles ended up tacky from the adhesive where a few floor tiles were missing near the front counter. But I'm all about the food, and I'll definitely be back to try more of their menu.