270 Victoria St
West Melbourne, VIC

It’s been a bit of a Korean Rampage recently; first Darac and now Wooga for some long overdue catching up with the Pharmily, now that placements are finally over and we are all back together again.
Wooga is arguably the busiest of the 4 Korean restaurants lined up opposite Vic Market. So even though we were going on a Sunday night, booking seemed like a good idea. The restaurant was already three quarters full at 6:30 but just as we were wondering where they were going to put us, we were led upstairs to a more private room designed for groups.
We loved the upstairs set up. Not only did the out of the way location lend itself to rowdiness and too-loud laughter, but there was even a magic sound-proof screen that was put up between the tables when another group arrived with screaming kids in tow. We were originally a bit disappointed to be away from the admittedly cosier downstairs, but we couldn’t thank the BBQ lords enough at the end of our meal, when we came downstairs and found it to be smokier than an opium den.

Three very good plates of banchan were brought out. A tall mound of kimchi that was a little too sweet but very crunchy; a tangle of sprouts dressed in sesame oil, and tangy batons of pickled daikon. They happily obliged our request for a top-up when we cleared the dishes in a matter of minutes.

Then the hot coals were brought out, and the BBQ madness began. Between the 5 of us, we elected to have the Combo B($65), designed for 3-4 people, topped up with an extra rice and another main dish.
Top Grade Beef Rib
Top Grade Beef Rib
The first cut of beef to be unfurled onto the grill was the Top Grade Beef Rib. We all agreed that this was much too tough and flavourless, but it was vastly improved by the soy bean based dipping sauce, which Sneha loved so much that she asked for thirds.
Top Grade Scotch Fillet/Beef Brisket
Top Grade Scotch Fillet/Beef Brisket

Then came the much more tender cuts. The Top Grade Scotch Fillet and Beef Brisket were fatty and melt in the mouth, the pieces with a charred exterior and still-pink center tasting especially good.

NOT Topside with Salt and Pepper. Most likely Marinated Flank Beef
Finally, the Top Side with Salt and Pepper. Except I think there was a bit of a mix-up in the kitchen, because we were served thin slices of beef marinated in a sweet soy sauce, as opposed to juicy chunks of beef like at Donwoori (which is also run by the same people). None of us complained though, as the thin slices of beef (most likely Marinated Flank Beef)  were meaty and flavoursome, perfect for scoffing down with rice, interspersed with bites of kimchi.
Kimchi and Pork in Spicy Soup

Also a part of the set was a big dish of Kimchi and Pork in Spicy Soup, bubbling away on the table. I really enjoyed this soup, which had a nice, clean taste, with a hint of sour kimchi in the light pork and vegetable broth. It was made even better by the fatty slices of pork, slippery tofu, and chewy rice cakes hidden at the bottom.

Pan Fried Squid in Spicy Sauce ($26)
Because we had a non-beef eater (Sneha) and a non-pork eater (Bilge) with us that night, we also ordered the Pan Fried Squid in Spicy Sauce ($26) to make sure everyone could eat their fill. I didn’t think much of this dish, it was much too sweet with no other distinguishing features, and very stingy on the squid, with most of the dish comprising of cabbage and noodle ‘filler’. Everyone else loved it though so take my opinion with a grain of salt – differences in taste and what not.
Wooga is fairly good as far as Korean BBQ goes, with an excellent value banquet to suit any group size, and a large yet personal dining room. The service was a bit sporadic, but that probably has more to do with the fact that we were upstairs instead of down. Donwoori is still my baby, but when you have a big group, Wooga is definitely the place you want to hit up. Just as long as no one is asthmatic.
Rating: 13/20 – opium den.

Wooga Korean Restaurant on Urbanspoon

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  • Reply theragingcook 25/09/2012 at 9:23 am

    Like! Only issue I have with these places is the smell you get! It’s like you swam in a pool filled with BBQed lamb
    and pork and beef and chicken and kimchi and spices bahahahaha my Mum was like geez why do your clothes smell so… meaty/BbQy lol

    • Reply ming 27/09/2012 at 7:40 am

      For some reason the ‘swimming in a pool of meat and kimchi and spices’ makes me really hungry right now lol. I secretly smell my BBQ clothes, a lot, before I put them in the wash :p

  • Reply Libby 25/09/2012 at 11:06 am

    I usually go to Hallah if I’m in that part of town (which is on the same street at Wooga), but I’ve been told to try Wooga as well. I guess I will have to after drooling over your pics in this post! :p

    • Reply ming 27/09/2012 at 7:41 am

      Hey libby! I saw your post on Hallah and drooled over the fried chicken; wouldn’t mind not having to head to Gami’s for my KFC (c wut i did thar) fix :p

  • Reply Hornbill 26/09/2012 at 6:10 am

    Hi Ming

    I love your photography. What camera and lenses do you use?

    Do visit my photo-blog and comment :


    • Reply ming 27/09/2012 at 7:43 am

      Hi Hornbill, thanks for dropping by! I use pentax K100 camera and a…. I still don’t know which lens, a camera savvy friend sold both to me and taught me how to use them, I just do the food snaps :p

      I took a look at your photo blogs, you have some aboslutely stunning stuff! do you take them all yourself?

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