Lunch at Gukbab Korean in Melbourne CBD
Gukbab Korean is a modern family-friendly Korean restaurant in the Melbourne CBD that has been impressing lovers of Korean food since 2011, and has now relaunched with Gukbab 2.0. Korean soul food at its finest in the Melbourne CBD. The relaunched Gukbab features a newly renovated restaurant with neon signage and stunning mural art, exciting new dishes, plus some of the classic signature dishes of the last 10 years. We were invited to lunch with media to experience Gukbab 2.0, hosted by Roslyn Foo and her team from Glamorazzi.
The name Gukbab means “soup rice” indicating a humble simplicity but there’s a depth and ton of highlights in the menu that evokes much imagination and flair. The stews, hot pots and soups here are famous, as is the fried chicken, with Gukbab being the place to be for the best of Korean soul food.
Gukbab is comfort food heaven when it comes to delicious tasty Korean stews such as the Korean Army Stew and the Beef Bulgogi. The Korean Army Stew is a hit featuring sausages, ramen, vegetables, and kimchi, while Beef Bulgogi Stew features spicy beef marinated in soy sauce cooked with vegetables and sweet potato noodles.
Warming soups and stews and top notch cocktails.
Kimchi pancakes are another speciality and are a personal favourite. As is the Seafood pancake (must order) featuring squid, shrimps, clams, carrots and spring oinions. Hot and crispy bliss. I also recommend the corn cheese, with a delightful cheesy hit.
Korean restaurants and fried chicken often go hand in hand, and I love to celebrate this in Melbourne as much as I have celebrated it in cities like Singapore. Gukbab iterations of fried chicken are compelling, with 8 exceptional flavours. This is where chef Kevin excels with flavours of KFC I've never experienced before but were delicious.
My KFC favourite was the Wasabi Fried Chicken (can't get enough), as well as “Spicy Spicy” (bring on the spice), Sweet Chilli, Spring Onion, Smoky Soy Garlic (love the smoky flavours), Snow Cheese (love the presentation), Soy Garlic (classic KFC) and Creamy Onion (surprisingly good). Washed down with Korean beer of course. If you are a KFC lover, you will enjoy exploring these flavours.
Bibimbap hits the high notes, with delicious mixed rice with meat and assorted vegetables. Warming food perfect for any season and perfect for the colder months.
Kevin is passionate about traditional Korean dishes but he also brings innovation to the table. He makes the sauces himself, sources fresh local ingredients and cooks with flair.
The newly renovated restaurant features mural artwork by a local Melbourne artist. The sketch art depicts a description of “what is happening in the soup”. The neon signage is also a modern touch.
Our feast included dishes from the previous menu (over the last 10 years) such as-
Followed by the KFC described above. We then experienced exceptional and some new dishes such as
Pork Belly (eaten in a mint leaf)
Beef (marinated served on the bone)
and warming Korean Hot Pots/Soups including awesome Korean Army Stew & Slowly Cooked Braised Beef Short Ribs, paired with Soju cocktail.
Exclusive Popsicle dessert.
Highly recommended Korean dining in the Melbourne CBD.
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