I hardly (if ever really) write full on food reviews these days. I just feel like there are a lot of folks out there who produce better content than I do when it comes to food, they document it properly with high quality pictures, and give you everything from the price of the dish to the type of seating a restaurant offers.
These days, when I write about a restaurant, it's normally because something other than the fact the food was fabulous has caught my eye. Like at Suprette, the burgers were amazing, but what I really loved best is how unassuming the space was and how immediately comfortable I felt; or at Lolla where I was shocked and awed at the cooking prowess of someone who first discovered his abilities behind the BBQ pit, cooking for the (then) unrefined palettes of an entire rugby team. So the same goes for this place, which you will find tucked beside Absinthe, on the quieter side of Boat Quay.
L quite literally stumbled upon it during her daily morning walk to work. It popped up out of nowhere and she liked the aesthetic and she convinced me to give it a go last Friday night. You see, the thing is, I really dislike Korean food. I would never, ever opt to eat it if given the choice. But seeing as how I'm dedicating an entire post to it, you must know that I loved every minute of the experience.
Perhaps what won me over was the fact that there wasn't a bowl of kimchi in sight. Nor did it reek of Korean food. And it was really nice to dine al fresco on a Friday evening, by the water on the quieter side of Boat Quay, with a beautiful breeze, and bumboats puttering by. It was very peaceful, which isn't the norm when you're eating out in the middle of town. It was Korean food in a fairly western setting if you will.
The food was excellent. The chicken was crisp and tasty, the beef tender and delicious, the soup was fragrant but not overwhelming, and the glass noodles full-flavoured without the customary coating of oil that you would find at most Korean restaurants.
if you think that my very uneducated palate (when it comes to Korean) is not a good gauge, then trust L's since she regularly indulges in the stuff, and by regularly I mean she's even holding her birthday at a Korean restaurant this year. That's how much she enjoys it, so the fact that SHE declared it a roaring success, means it's indisputable. The manager even thought she was Korean because she pronounced everything so precisely.
Service was warm, friendly and extremely conscientious. When I sat down I mentioned in passing to the host that I'd had a terrible day at work, she smiled and expressed sympathy, and I thought that was the end of it (it would have been enough really). At the end of dinner, she surprised us with complimentary ice cream and said she hoped it would make me feel better! The warmth, and the fact that she remembered, made it truly remarkable - a sign of great service if there was any.
They have only been open for about two weeks, so it's expected that they would have some teething problems (they forgot our water, not that we actually noticed because we were too busy with our wine, but they apologized profusely and were wonderful about it), but on the whole it was a fantastic experience, so good in fact, I plan to go back this week. If that isn't testament to a good time, then I don't know what is.
Namu Korean Dining
70 Boat Quay