Galbi Dinner at Bonsuwon: Best Korean Beef BBQ in Suwon, South Korea

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Bonsuwon: Famous Korean Beef BBQ in Suwon, South Korea

Apart from the modern structures, cultural and heritage wonders of South Korea, one thing that made me excited in going there is their food. Of course there are Korean Restaurants in Manila and in any part of the globe that I have visited but the experience of food definitely feels different if when you try it from where it all came from. You can eat kimchi in Manila, but you can never capture its characteristic flair until you see how it is done in Korea.

Bonsuwon Galbi
Bonsuwon Galbi

After visiting Suwon Hwaseong Fortress, we all proceeded to Bonsuwon Restaurant to meet the tourism officials of Gyeonggi Province – our gracious host for our dinner.

Dinner with the tourism officials of Gyeonggi Province and KTO
Dinner with the tourism officials of Gyeonggi Province and KTO

The restaurant is located on a quiet area on top of a hill. From the outside, the restaurant doesn’t look busy but upon entering the restaurant, we were surprised how crowded the restaurant was. It was actually bustling with dozens of customers who flock the area for its signature Galbi, a type of sizzling juicy Korean barbeque.

We had around 20 members in our group and we were given a long table located beside a huge open window. The barbeque smell normally lingers on clothes, which is the reason why why our tour guide booked us in an al fresco area instead of an enclosed one.

So what makes Bonsuwon Galbi Popular?

Bonsuwon serves famous thin sliced beef that is marinated for over 24 hours in a sauce made of various ingredients. One other popular product of this restaurant is their specialty, Doenjang Jjigae a soybean paste stew made of homemade soybean paste, which is made from homegrown beans.

Banchan
Banchan

Our table was already filled with impressive spread of Banchan when we arrived. Banchan refers to Korean small plates filled with mostly fermented vegetables, fresh vegetables, sauces, tofu and other famous Korean side dishes.

Fresh Vegetable Salad
Fresh Vegetable Salad

One of my favorite side dish was the fresh lettuce filled with soybean paste. I swear, it was so addicting and delicious that I think I had too much lettuce that time.

How’s the Beef BBQ?

We had an unlimited supply of sliced marinated beef. We cooked the meat in our own way over a charcoal open grill which is good for me since I love my beef well done all the time.

Authentic Korean Beef BBQ photo by VisitKorea.or.kr
Authentic Korean Beef BBQ photo by VisitKorea.or.kr

Along with the beef, the grill was also filled with fresh garlic and mushrooms. We can’t count how many plates of beef we have had and that is all that is needed to explain how good it was. The meat was really well marinated but it maintained its natural color and even literally melts in your mouth.

Charcol Grilled Korean Beef BBQ
Charcol Grilled Korean Beef BBQ

After having the Galbi feast, they also served us a bowl of cold noodles. To be honest, I’m not used to eating cold noodles and that was actually my first time trying it and I find it really good. The taste is not overwhelming and the flavor is nice too.

Famous Korean Beef BBQ from Bonsuwon
Famous Korean Beef BBQ from Bonsuwon

Just when I thought I was already full, they finally served rice. I was really surprised and intrigued since that was something truly unusual where I came from. We normally have rice from the start but I guess, that’s part of the unique way Koreans eat their meals, especially in their flavorful cuisine.

After the heavy meal, it’s finally time for dessert. But instead of fancy cakes and pastries, they served Sikhye, a sweet and refreshing rice drink that is typically served after a heavy meal. Sikhye is believed to aid digestion, it contains dietary fiber and anti-oxidants.

Galbi Restaurant in Suwon
Galbi Restaurant in Suwon

Overall, it was a fantastic dinner. I usually prefer Pork over Beef BBQ but I guess I’m now a convert. Korean Food really surprised me a lot, and that was just our second day.

More food stories coming your way soon…

AirAsia’s Manila-Incheon (Seoul) flights occur twice daily. It’s the shortest trip, but AirAsia also offers flights from Cebu to Seoul once a day, and two-way charteredflights to/from Kalibo (Boracay), Incheon (Seoul), and Busan. For flight booking andreservations, visit http://www.airasia.com/. Follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

Bonsuwon Galbi
Add: 51-20, Uman-dong, Paldal-gu, Suwon, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea
Tel: +82 31211 8434
Operating hours: 11:30-22:30
Official Website: http://www.bonsuwon.co.kr/

Special thanks to Korea Tourism Organization and AirAsia for making this trip possible.

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