Korean comedian Kang Ho-Dong greets you at the door in cardboard cutout form. He’s also a cartoon on the storybook menu, where his American chain is given a distinctly Aussie twist. The shiny silver extractors and polished concrete floors give the space a quasi-industrial look. Even banchan arrive in metal, well except for earthenware bowls of gyeran jjim (steamed egg) that make nice counterpoints to the charcoal grilled meats. And make no mistake; you have come here to eat meat, constructed into ssam (leaf wrapped) with kimchi and radish in gochujang (hot pepper). Start your big beef adventure with Beef Tartare ($27) before advancing to the grill. While Wagyu 8+ Rib Eye ($27) is the most popular, the Wagyu 8+ Beef Flower Marble Scotch Fillet ($34) really melts on the tongue. While you’re cooking, get into the lively spirit of the place by necking a few Hite ($6) beers or some Korean Herbal Wine ($20). After you’ve tangled with thinly sliced Beef Tongue ($18) kick on with some pork. Don’t be afraid of the Pork Jowl ($19) – it has good meat to fat ratio and scrubs up well in a shiso leaf. By the way, the icy banchan bowl isn’t a hand-wash! It’s radish water (dongchimi) and aids digestion, so try spoonfuls between your ssam.
678 Sydney Korean BBQ
Level 1/ 396 Pitt Street (enter Goulburn Street), Haymarket
Ph: (02) 9267 7334 facebook.com/678Sydney