Red, Hot Bubbling Cauldron of Mandu Jungol - Gonjiam
Spicy, red and hot? I am so there. And that is exactly what I'll get when I order mandu jungol at a hole in the wall called Gonjiam. The waitress brings out a vessel filled to the brim with generous dumplings, zucchini, mushroom, scallion, and udon noodle. Then it is placed atop one of those mini gas range thing and kept bubbling and hot. It is so damn good. It makes my mouth water just to look at that picture.
First two times I had mandu jungol there it was pretty spicy. I rememebr Boy and I finishing a whole pitcher of water while trying to finish our own little pot. But the third time I only drank a glass of water. Hmmm, I hope it's spicier next time I go back. It is quite refreshing in a sweating, runny nose sort of way, sending hot spicy broth down one's throat.
Before we started on that cauldron of red, we appetized ourselves with the modeum-jun, meaning literally everything pancake. Those cute little juns are a lot fluffier than ones you get at most Korean restaurants. More eggy than battery, imo. We saw other tables that had a huge plate of noodles and such but I find it hard to sway from my spicy mandu jungol.
One spectacular thing about Gonjiam is their pa (scallion) kimchi. Definitely one of the top two pa kimchi I have ever tasted. I don't make kimchi but I tell ya I definitely know a quality kimchi from a supermarket overseasoned crap kimchi. This was fresh, pungent, oniony. I was in kimchi heaven.
Ohh, wish I was there right now! Me getting hungry. :/
Beverly & Western