On the first week of my arrival I explored the suburb of Strathfield and it was very Korean. There is no shortage of Korean BBQ here and I wonder how they all stay in business. After wandering up and down the block a few times because I’m indecisive, I finally decided to pop into The Mandoo. Not really sure what drew me here compared to the other places. Maybe because it looked small and homey? The menu is small and consists of dumplings and noodle soups.
After my friend Cecilia (check out her blog) introduced me to Korean cold noodles last summer, I’ve been wanting to try more. Here was my chance! The concept may seem strange but I assure you it’s a worthwhile experience. The Spicy Cold Noodles ($12) came with half a boiled egg on top with some kimchi and marinated cucumbers. You can pick the spiciness level and I chose 2 out of 4 with 1 being mild and 4 being deadly spicy. I thought I could handle level 2 but I was wrong. It was HOT FIRE FLAMES. I still kept eating anyway in between lots of water. Before the heat kicked in though, I was able to enjoy the cool broth which had a vinegar-y taste to it which I love. The noodles were thin and I easily slurped them down. If the broth wasn’t so spicy I would’ve drank it all!
Now on to the star of the show, the BBQ Pork Galbi Dumplings ($12). When I ordered them I was expecting Chinese style dumplings that came in a thin wrapper. Instead, these buns arrived. I wouldn’t call them dumplings but hey what do I know?
You can watch them steam the dumplings through a window at the front of the shop. The bun was soft and there was a good ratio of bun to filling. I can’t quite discern what else was in the filling though but there was a bit of crunch to it. I don’t have a lot of experience with Korean dumplings but this was an enjoyable experience and The Mandoo must be doing something right as they were featured in a newspaper article (it was taped to the wall).