Saturday, 23 March 2013

Red Opium

“Hidden gem”

Photos courtesy of Emandy

Red opium is a new concept restaurant serving thai food but in modern tapas style. It is literally a hidden gem being located underground in a basement on Hay St. This restaurant was the chosen venue for a dear friend’s birthday. Walking down the stairs into the basement was exciting, we were greeted with red lanterns and draped curtains depicting a mysterious asian thai feel, there was even a little section to play chess and a lovely bed-like couch as one of the seatings. I was very impressed with the interiors.

Chess area

We were seated and greeted by the lovely waitress whom is the owner with her husband being the chef. My friends have read a critic review before going in and we decided to order some items he recommended and some from the owner. Items on the menu had very unique names, we ordered a total of 6 dishes.

Crudo tuna

Crudo tuna
Tuna was fresh and melted in our mouths, also had a hint of lemongrass which really gave it a punch of flavour. Everyone enjoyed this dish.

Ying and Yang Dips

Yin and Yang dip

Crackers served with creamy prawn and coconut dip and minced pork tomato dip. These dips was so unique and absolutely delicious, the crackers was so light and crispy and presentation was spot on. My fault would be more dips and more crackers please *I will just keep saying this throughout the post*.

Crying Waygu

Again another spot on dish, this reminded me of beef tataki but with a thai twist. Proabably a favourite amongst the group.

Son in law eggs

Son in law eggs

These eggs was exciting to eat. The owner recommended this dish as she told us stories of customers falling in love with it. Double cooked eggs, boiled then fried to give a crust on the outside and a sauce that tasted like the ones you find in maggie mee, packed full of flavour and abit on the spicy side. A rich dish we all enjoyed.

F duck

F duck

Roast duck in red curry. This is probably one of the best red curry I’ve had. So rich and creamy, packed full of flavour with lovely voluptuous duck pieces. This dish brought out the ugly side of me, I just didn’t want to share.

White bait

White bait

Unfortunately our lack of knowledge of what a white bait is led us to expect a big fleshy white fish, we were left disappointed with this dish. All the Malaysians referred to it as Ikan bilis. It was more a snack than a main dish. We ordered this as it was apparently one of the recommended dishes by the critic, but I’m sure there are better dishes than this.

All our meals were accompanied with fragrant white rice and we all left JUST full. We decided to have dessert elsewhere as they ran out of what we wanted, the dessert menu was still being refined at that time, I've recently seen the dessert menu and it looks promising. The bill came out to be just under $20 each which we were all very surprised. I think we could have ordered a few more dishes to bring us over the line in terms of feeling just full and FULL. I would have liked the dishes to be 10x bigger, but that’s just me being greedy and throwing the tapas concept down the drain.

I enjoyed dining in Red Opium and have been recommending the place to everyone I know since then. I have tried dining in again but they were fully booked so word has definitely gone out.

NB: The entertainment card offers a 25% off the bill to Red Opium
NB: They do private functions

Red Opium on Urbanspoon

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Seoul Buffet Korean BBQ

"Jal meokkesseumnida"

One of my favourite Korean restaurants is Seoul Korean BBQ Situated on William st, Northbridge. I’ve tried many Korean BBQ restaurants but have always gone back to his one. I believe they have a sister branch in Victoria Park and I was told by the owner that their son opened a branch in Subiaco which I'm yet to try.

Seoul BBQ has a lovely environment which is bit more upper class looking compared to majority of korean restaurants, they provide floor seating which I’ve always picked but have accepted that the novelty slowly wears out after the knees start hurting half way.

I have dined in Seoul BBQ 4 times, for this occasion, I went with my family for my birthday dinner. For those who have not tried Korean BBQ before, it is basically BBQ your own meat concept, staff will change the hot plate over if it gets too charcoaled.

When I go for Korean, I always order a seafood or kimchi pancake and a mix platter of meat all eaten with rice. These are usually sufficient. In this occasion, we also ordered a seafood platter which I think the meat combo is better. I’ve tried the soups before but did not find them amazing that I’d order them again. Their steamboats are great but what keeps me coming back is their BBQ meat. I personally like my meat marinated unlike Tong86 which I’m not too big of a fan of, Seoul Korean BBQ has well marinated meat and all so tender after grilled. 

Meat combo, marinated and shaved

Seafood combo

Another plus side is the condiments that come with the dishes. I love the potato thing and the dipping sauces for the meat, I'm not sure what they actually are but one of them is probably just salt and butter? Whatever it is, it makes a big difference.


Side dishes

The pancakes are crispy on the outside and filled with reasonable amount of seafood or kimchi, this is what I look for in a korean pancake. Many korean places can do a good pancake so it all comes down to how stingy they are with the fillings, the worst I've tried is Tong86 which was filled with spring onions and hardly any "real" seafood. Pancakes also come with a nice dipping sauce.

Seafood pancake

As stated in the name, this place also offers a buffet, I’ve never tried the buffet as I think a BBQ and pancakes is enough for me, but yes it’s definitely one of my favourite Korean joints in Perth. jal meokkesseumnida!

Seoul Buffet Korean BBQ & Steamboat Northbridge on Urbanspoon