We usually go out to eat on Friday nights and eat Galbi downtown. Yummy! Delicious! I think this is one of the best meals in the entire universe and there is no hint of sarcasm!

The restaurant is a traditional Korean restaurant where you sit on the floor next to a low table that has a grill in the center. After taking your order, they bring a container of hot charcoal and place it in the center of the grill to cook your meat on. On top of this is a metal grate..

The salad (in bowl with chopsticks) is a vinegar/sesame concoction and is the first thing to be served. The rice is served in the small silver bowl- each serving is about a cupful. The meat is in the bowl to the left of the grill and is in a marinade of soy sauce, garlic and possibly vinegar? (not sure and would love to know!) In all of the other bowls there are side dishes such as kimchee, pickled radish, sesame oil, samjang sauce, and soy sauce. The meat is in thin long slices and you place it on the grill to cook. By the way, that is my husband doing the cooking...

They also bring you denjang chigae (in the brown clay bowl) which is soup that is flavored with a fermented paste called denjang. It has green peppers, potato, and cubes of tofu in it. They cook it fresh for you and each serving is cooked in the same clay bowl it is brought to you in . When it comes to the table it is still boiling. They also bring you a huge plate stacked high with lettuce, carrots, korean green peppers, onions,cucumbers and peeled garlic cloves.

We Americans get sidelong glances because we put carrots, onion and cucumber in our meat when we cook it. Normally- and we do both- you would eat the cucumbers by dipping it into the sesame oil or samjang. To cook the food you are given a pair of scissors and a pair of tongs. When the meat is cooked you cut it into bite size pieces.

Now comes the eating part! =) Take some denjang, and put it on the lettuce leaf

Top it with side dishes of your choice, some rice, a piece of meat and roll it up in the lettuce like a mini burrito.

And just like eating tortillas and eggs WITH YOUR HANDS, eating galbi has to be done WITH YOUR HANDS! It just woudn't taste the same with a fork, knive, or any other utensil. =)


  1. It looks yummy. I believe that was one of the meals we had when I was visiting son in Monterey! Never have developed the taste for kimchi, although theirs was better than 'store bought'. I smiled when I saw the Pepsi bottle :-).

  2. It's very interesting to read your story explaining the things that are familiar to me from American's standpoint. And I really love your Button and Bead swag! I tried to comment below that story but there was already 5 comments! I want my comments have scarcity value. HaHaHa^^; So I decided to comment here~

  3. Oh, thanks for the memories! Way back in the late 60s, we were in Okinawa and several times ate at a Korean BBQ place, exactly as you describe here. The food was yummy!