Gohyang Korean Restaurant offers unique food, different from other Asian restaurants. One of my best friends knew I love to try new cuisines and suggested I try this place with her. When I entered, I noticed it was full of local customers eating there, which is a sign of good quality food. If you are feeling adventurous in trying new cuisine, this is a great place to visit.
This appetizer is a savory pancake made with rice flour, green onions, octopus, squid and mussels. It is not soft like most other pancakes and has a lot of different textures and flavors. It’s somewhat chewy and crispy on the outside, due to the fact it is pan fried. The octopus, squid and rice flour give the inside of the dish a chewy texture, while the green onions give a little crunch. It is typically eaten with sesame oil type sauce drizzled on top. If you like strong seafood flavors then you should enjoy this appetizer, which is enough for two or three to share, or even as a meal for one.
The meat served was cooked on a table-top grill, which was heated with steam and gas. The waiter cut and placed the meat on the grill to cook, and even trimmed the pork to bite-size pieces. She also added the marinade and monitored both types of meat to make sure it was cooked well enough to be eaten. The pork and chicken was eaten with seven different side dishes
The pork tasted just like a thick slice of bacon, with no salt. It gained more taste when dipped in the salted sesame oil, with pepper and sesame seeds added. The chicken was well cooked and soft in texture. It had some taste on its own because of the marinade, but gained more flavor with the side dishes.
These seven side dishes are the main part of the meal. They give the main course all the flavor. It was quickly obvious that sesame is a major ingredient used in Korean cuisine, or at least at this particular restaurant. The fun part of eating this way is that you can mix and match different items with each piece of meat, to create a different flavor combination with each bite! Lettuce leaves and rice were also served. My friend taught me that the traditional way to eat was to place a piece of meat into a leaf, then add a bit of rice and any other side dish I wanted, then wrap it up and place it in my mouth. It ended up becoming a big wrap that I had to eat in more than one bite! It was delicious and also fun to put my meal together this way. Each side dish has its own taste, adding different levels of flavor to the meat.
The sesame oil with salt, pepper and sesame seeds was very salty, and a few drops enough to give taste to the pork and chicken. The potatoes were cooked until soft, and tasted like sweet potatoes. The sesame oil and sweet potatoes are perfect for those who prefer salty or sweet flavors in their meal. The sesame paste was good, and only a small amount was needed with the meat. The thin fish cakes had a texture different of most other types of fish. These were not flaky, but instead were slight rubbery and not spicy. The cucumbers were a refreshing addition. They were slightly salty and sweet. Even though it looked spicy, it was not at all. The sweet sesame oil contained a mix of sweet and savory tastes and went well with everything served. Since I am not a fan of kimchi, I did not taste it.
The garlic was very strong and pungent. The eggplant was quite soft in texture, and had some flavor from the sesame oil it was sauteed in. Like the cucumbers, the sauteed greens gave the meal a fresh taste. They were lightly salted and cooked to the right consistency, wilted just enough yet still maintaining a little crunch. A little garlic may have been added to the greens too.
Sweetened Rice Water
Sikhye is a sweetened rice water that was served at the end of lunch. It is meant to help with the digestive system after consuming a heavy meal. This drink tastes just like sweet rice-flavored water, with some rice in the bottom of the glass. It comes down to personal preference if you like this drink or not. For me, it was a bit too unusual tasting. I like rice, water and sweet beverages, but not combined like this.
Overall, visiting this restaurant was a really fun and exciting experience. There were many menu items, and various cooking styles, to choose from. Since they do not have a website with their menu listed, I took the chance of taking photos of their menu while there. I apologize if any of the text turned out a little blurry. I have also listed their address at the end of this review.