Sherman's Food Adventures: JJang Korean BBQ and Social House

JJang Korean BBQ and Social House

There was a time when Korean BBQ in the GVRD was pretty predictable.  You would have the usual Banchan, soup and then an array of meats including beef, spicy pork, chicken, beef short ribs and some seafood.  However, with newer spots opening up all the time, we find more premium meats (especially with beef) and drinks to go with your meal.  As such, it is much closer to what you'd find in L.A. and NYC K-Towns.  One of the newest spots is JJang Korean BBQ and Social House in Richmond near the Oval.

We were invited to try the place out and were presented with a array of premium meats and with a basic selection of Banchan.  Sure, it was mostly the basics, but they were good.  We found Kimchi, Stewed Potatoes and Bean Sprouts.  I especially enjoyed the potatoes as they were in huge chunks, but still tender and soaked with a savoury sweetness.  The bean sprouts were crunchy with a good amount of seasoning.  Lastly, the kimchi had a nice spice to it with some tang.

Onto the meats, we were served the Beef Belly and the Premium Short Rib.  As you can see, both were well-marbled and fresh.  Onto the grill they went and due to the fat content, it seared up beautifully with lots of caramelization and inherent flavour.  Naturally, the meat ate very well due to the butteriness of the fat.  Of note, the ventilation was pretty decent as I didn't smell too much like a Korean BBQ when I left.

Onto the next set of proteins, we found Pork Belly, Saba and Whole Squid.  As much as you could eat the saba and squid just like that, it was best eaten after placed on the grill.  That way, the fats in the saba were activated as well as the skin getting a bit crispy and charred.  The charring with the squid helped add flavour as well as tightening up the texture with a bit more chew.  As for the pork belly, it did its fatty thing when cooked on the grill.  There was some nice crispy portions to go with the butteriness of the fat.

Saving the best for last, the Boneless Shortrib didn't look like much, but when rolled out, it was a considerable amount of fatty meat.  When seared on the grill, the meat was at its shortib best being tender with a meaty chew while being completely marbled.  Also, it was well-marinated and the sugars caramelized offering up a smoky sweetness.  Wish we had some rice to eat this with, because it was pretty flavourful.

However, we did have some things to wash down all these BBQ meats.  One of which was the Clear Clam Soup.  Beyond the buttery and meaty clams, this broth was as natural-tasting as it could get.  It was basically water and clam nectar, which was very subtle, but a good foil to the flavourful meats.  We also had a few drinks including the JJang Mango Jump with a soju bottle mix & tropical mango.  It was sweet and refreshing.

Lastly, we had the Bulgogi Beef Hot Pot cooked table side on a portable butane burner.  This was full of veggies and plenty of tender beef.  This was so comforting especially with the cold weather lately.  Overall, the food at JJang was pretty good quality and since it is a new restaurant, the setup is perfect for BBQ since there is sufficient ventilation and the high ceilings only help the cause.

*All food and beverages were complimentary for this post

The Good:
- Modern and spacious dining room
- High ceilings and proper ventilation
- Good meat quality

The Bad:
- Free parking is only limited to 1.5 hours, which is not sufficient



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