Recently Mr DH introduced us to ChangGo, a Korean BBQ restaurant on Little Lonsdale Street.
Yes, I know. Surely I have eaten enough Korean BBQ to last me a lifetime? Does my blog need another post about a Korean BBQ restaurant?
The answer to both of those questions is firmly: No, there is never enough Korean BBQ, and yes, this blog needs another Korean BBQ post, because ChangGo is famous for their eight flavoured pork belly – cutely described on the menu as “8 colorful flavors of pork”.
Alastair and I had dinner at ChangGo one Saturday with Wince, Haz, Gaz and Thanh. Wince warned us that it was a very busy and popular place, so we arrived at 5.55pm and were lucky to get the last free table.
We were really only there for one thing: pork belly. The pork belly set ($58.80) comes with 8 flavours of pork belly (natch), plus two bowls of steamed rice, a seafood soybean paste stew, and token vegetables for the grill. The menu says that it can serve 2-3 people, but it is quite a lot of meat, so you could probably stretch it out to four people if you added another dish.
Also, you may notice that the grill plate is angled so it drips any fat into a container of water. Cleverness.
We had six people, so ordered the pork belly set plus a couple of other dishes. In hindsight, we should’ve ordered two sets of pork belly and gorged ourselves on meat.
The first of our other dishes was the Koroke / croquettes (4 pieces for $10). We received four big croquettes – soft mashed potatoes deep fried inside a crumbed coating and served with mayo and random brown sauce. The rest of the bowl was filled with salad – enough to actually eat and not pass off as a garnish.
We also had the sweet and sour fried chicken ($25.50). The small cubes of chicken were nicely fried, but I’m not a huge fan of sweet and sour so wasn’t very sure about the sauce.
We were all excited when the main event finally arrived. The pork belly is brought out to the table on a metre long plank, with each flavour labelled. The eight flavours are:
It was a bit difficult to distinguish between the flavours after the meat was cut up and mixed together. However, I liked the original, ginseng, garlic, miso paste and hot flavours the most.
My least favourite flavour was the herb one – it kind of seemed a bit weird and jarring with the others.
Apart from that though: yum. Particularly when one of the waiters turned our flame up (we wondered why our meat was taking so long to cook… dumb) and the pork really started cooking properly with crispy edges.
Service was slightly harried, and the kitchen must’ve been very busy, because food did take a while to arrive.
For example, our stew didn’t come out for ages and ages, and we asked about it five or six times. Finally, one of the waiters frankly admitted that the kitchen forgot about it.
It arrived eventually (we weren’t leaving without it) and it was a nice way to finish the meal. The stew had a sweetness from the seafood that was in it – it even contained a crab claw.
The final bill was… dum dum dum… a hefty $17 each. (Note this is just for food – we didn’t have drinks because we were seated in the new section and they didn’t have a liquor license.)
But a warning – they are BUSY. As I said previously, we were lucky to get the last free table. But it’s definitely worth waiting for 8 colorful flavors of pork.
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70 Little LaTrobe Street