When we think of brunch, we’ll admit, the first thing that comes to mind is NOT Korean food. We dined at Momojein when it first opened, and were impressed with celebrity chef Lim Hee Won’s modern Korean takes on traditional dishes, and so when they announced the launch of their weekend brunch menu, we decided that it was worth heading back to see what they had created.
The semi-buffet setup offers 25 all-you-can-eat hot and cold Korean options, the choice of one main course and their Korean dessert plate to finish your meal. Priced at a cool $350, we found this to be a great value, and opted to add $120 for the 2 hours of free-flow Makgeoli, beer, and soju sangria. For those of you seeking bubbles, the drink add-on is a bit more at $170.
We brought along one of our Korean friends who decided for us that the drink of choice for the day was going to be the traditional drink of Makgeoli with beer. For those of you who haven’t had Makgeoli before, it’s a cloudy, slightly sweet, slightly acidic rice wine that pairs well the greasiness of Korean barbecue. We were instructed to place a few ounces of the Makgeoli into our glass, top it with beer, add a quick stir, and down the hatch. It was slightly carbonated, and quite refreshing.
Mixing the Makgeoli with Beer
The Makgeoli is only 4.5% in alcohol volume, so it’s a great brunch beverage if you want to have drinks but not get too buzzed. If you’re looking for something a bit stronger, we’d recommend the soju sangria.
There were so many delicious options to choose from the buffet area, and so we’ll highlight a few of our favourites:
The fresh kimchi was a huge treat. Both the napa cabbage and cucumber varieties were spicy, red, pungent, and delicious.
Kimchi made in-house at Momojein
The Tteok Skewers which are grilled Korean rice cakes had a nutty flavour, were slightly chewy, and offered a different take on Tteok, which usually is served drowning in an orange, spicy sauce.
Chewy, nutty Tteok Skewers
The fried chicken wings were a highlight, and if nothing else, all-you-can-eat Korean fried chicken wings is a good reason to partake of this brunch experience. Crispy, sweet, and savoury battered wings with cold beer is a great way to start off any weekend morning.
Yum! AYCE Korean Fried Chicken wings!
Moving on, the main dishes were all quite tasty, but the winners here were the Slow Cooked Pork Belly, Grilled Kalbi, and the Lamb Chop.
Slow-Cooked Pork Belly
If you eat pork belly, this is a must order. The challenge here is putting each component that comes with this dish all into one bite. If you can successfully load the pork belly, preserved onion, sesame leaf, mustard, hot bean paste, white kimchi, and plums onto one fork, you’ll find a great sensation of savoury, sweet, sour and spicy, all in one bite. It’s a challenge, but the texture-filled mouth explosion bite is worth it.
Grilled Pork Belly with Delicious Accompaniments
One of the most recognisable dishes in Korean BBQ, this take by Chef Lim features premium beef from the U.S. and is accompanied with a coriander side salad and a creamy ranch-like dressing which offers an aromatic twist to a usually one-dimensional meat dish.
Grilled Kalbi with Coriander Salad and Creamy Goodness
If you love lamb, go this route. Served on the bone, the lamb is chargrilled and drizzled with a light wholegrain mustard dressing and accompanied with shiitake mushrooms and coriander root.
Chargrilled Lamb Chop - Served on the Bone
We were quite thoroughly pleased with this choice. Granted, this won't be somewhere that we go EVERY week for brunch, as doing a Western-style brunch is often preferable and lighter on your stomach. But if you're looking for something different to mix it up, and if you've got a hunger for Korean food, this is a great pick.
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202 Queen's Road East
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