Seoul Metro

380 Lonsdale St 
Melbourne, VIC 
There is nothing I love more than a hot summer’s day. However, there is one drawback to singlet and shorts weather – no Korean food. Not that I can’t go and have some if I’m really craving it but, I’m just not sure of my ability to have a spicy kimchi hot pot in 36 degree weather without contracting heat stroke. So as (hopefully) our last hurrah for 2013, we went to Seoul Metro for one final Korean fix before the weather gets any warmer. 
I really didn’t know what to expect, as Seoul Metro was situated in a parking lot, but after walking through the corridor pasted with Korean pop idols, we found ourselves in a utilitarian, yet quirky dining space.
It became apparent as we sat down why Seoul Metro was named so. On one wall is a massive print of Seoul’s train network, and on another, a vintage photograph of Seoul railway station. 
We decided to keep it simple, ordering a Budae Tchigae($28, regular) to share, which came with two bowls of rice, and a trio of banchan. Whilst the sprouts were bland and the kimchi rather limp, we cleaned out the silken mashed potato in seconds.

Budae Tchigae ($28, regular)
Budae Tchigae, also known as Korean Army Stew, is a concoction of war-time rations boiled up in a spicy kimchi soup base. When I say war-time rations, I mean everything from hot dogs to rice cakes to spam to fish tofu to shredded cheese, and the result is a unique conglomeration of east and west. 

Budae Tchigae ($28, regular)
We had a good time digging out a large variety of treats hidden in the fiery soup, which was a lot less ferocious than it looked. I thought the generous amounts of sweet potato noodles, mingling with the stretchy cheese, was especially enjoyable. However, despite the generous selection of ingredients, the dish was let down by the stew, which was mostly salt and chilli. As a result, there was no interplay between the rich and creamy cheese, and the tangy and spicy soup base, leaving the dish at satisfactory, but no more.
Seoul Metro isn’t brilliant by any stretch of the imagination, but I will concede that the food is sufficiently tasty, and marginally cheaper than what you’d expect to pay for a Korean dinner. But considering the large selection of excellent Korean restaurants in the area, I doubt I’d be back any time soon.
Rating: 12.5/20 – army rations.
This rating reflects my personal experience at the time of visit. And how much I love my dinosaur shirt.

Seoul Metro on Urbanspoon

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