When I read Choux-Fleur‘s review on Toodouri Korean BBQ the other day, I started thinking about when the last time I had Korean BBQ was, and then I remembered! I actually forgot to blog about the one and only Korean BBQ I had this year (in Australia anyway) at a restaurant called Jong Ga in Brisbane back in October. It was the briefest of stays for a friend’s wedding and Jong Ga was the only eat out meal I could really blog about.
It was set on a high side of the road overlooking Fortitude Valley, in a traditional Asian style building that was very easy to spot. We could smell sizzling meat from across the road!
As the weather was hot and humid, eating Korean BBQ wasn’t top of my list, however, the bride recommended this restaurant to us as it was $28.80 for all you can eat food with drinks at extra cost. We were all meat eaters so this sounded like a good idea and it was very close to our hotel. The interior wasn’t too fancy, just a lot of open space with tables and the chillers filled with meat at the back. It was quite busy though considering its remote location so there must be a few regulars who like this place.
There were many traditional Korean dishes included, such as bulgogi (marinated bbq beef), jap chae (sweet potato noodles stir-fried with veggies), seafood pancake and so forth which I grabbed a little bit of each. I liked Jong Ga’s version of the seafood pancake and the potato noodles, although there wasn’t much seafood in the pancake that I found – it was mostly spring onions and dough. However, it went well with the sauce and served as a good entree for all the meat to come. The potato noodles were quite sweet, just how I like it.
Apart from cooked dishes, they also had salads and many of the usual complimentary dishes you get in Korean restaurants such as kimchi and bean sprouts although I didn’t see as many people eating these. Why would meat eaters come and eat salad right?
They also had a variety of sushi which were reasonably fresh and tasty. However, I only tried one or two as the rice from sushi always fill me up very quickly. I wanted to leave stomach for all the lovely looking meat in the chiller!
There were two chillers, both with different varieties of meat, one holding marinated meats and the other holding un-marinated. There were a lot of different meats to choose from including my all time favourite pork belly and many others like beef tongue, other beef cuts and chicken. Yuye loved his beef tongue. He commented that he was going to eat just that and he’ll be satisfied. I always found tongue to be a bit tough. There were also prawns and squid for those who want to mix up their diet.
We ate so much I could hardly walk. Again. I do this every time even at restaurants that are not buffets so naturally buffets kill me. The walk back to the hotel was good to digest the food a little although at times I wanted Yuye to either carry me back or roll me on the ground. Walking is such a chore when I’m bloated!
The hotel we stayed was Mantra on Queen at the corner of Ann and Queen Streets. It was a business hotel that was more or less in the middle of nowhere and we only booked it to be closer to where our other friends were staying. On the first day of arrival at 3pm, we were awfully hungry but there were no restaurants in sight! The very few that were nearly were all closed so we ended up just purchasing a roast chicken and a cheesecake from Woolworths. It was a very interesting experience eating Woolworths food in a hotel room although I’d rather have eaten something I could blog about.
At the time, Mantra was doing a promotion whereby if you take a photo next to Pat Rafter’s cutout and post it on their Facebook page, you can possibly win $200 Mantra vouchers. I was too embarrassed to do it.
The room was quite decent. For around $120 a night (I booked with my Entertainment Book so got a discount) we got a spacious room with a king bed and the usual amenities. Perhaps the hotel knew of its remote location and lack of restaurants, there was also a microwave, plates and cutlery for us to eat our chicken with! The bed and pillows were soft and clean, although there was one thing that I didn’t like about it. It wasn’t a real king bed but rather two singles put together. I could feel the line in the middle of the bed which annoyed me a bit what I couldn’t ask for much since other hotels I looked at didn’t even give me a king bed option.
The bathroom was clean but nothing special.
We had a balcony which could be opened up and the view wasn’t bad either. This I liked. Although we weren’t in the hotel enough to really enjoy this facility.
We went to Brisbane for two days in total. The first day was hail and rain but hot and humid at the same time and the next day was sunny and beautiful (still quite hot though). We met up with Yuye’s uncle and aunty and they took us to the grounds in University of Queensland to take nature shots. It was jacaranda season and we were surrounded by a sea of purple. It was so magnificent my photos didn’t do it justice.
I wouldn’t stay at Mantra on Queen again as it was further away from the city centre compared to other hotels, however, if you’re in the vicinity for work or other reasons, then this hotel is a good choice.
Same goes for Jong Ga Korean BBQ restaurant as it’s in a reasonably remote location so unless if someone was willing to drive me around Brisbane, I probably wouldn’t be eating here again. I did quite like it as for the price, you get a lot of good food and Korean BBQ is always so fun. If you live in Brisbane, do give this restaurant a try.
Phone: (07) 3252 3559
316 Saint Pauls Ter, Fortitude Valley QLD 4006
Mantra on Queen
Phone: 1800 557 655
570 Queen Street, Brisbane QLD 4000