Korean spots seem to be popping up left and right in town. Tofu House (or is it Seoul Tofu House) is the latest to open up and of course, it’s located South side (*eye roll*). As everyone else will no doubt mention, they’ve taken over a Swiss Chalet – first time I’ve ever stepped foot into one of their establishments.
The place is absolutely massive with booths and tables splattered everywhere. Not the best atmosphere but there were a lot of groups dining when we arrived on a Tuesday for dinner. There were a lot of Asians in the restaurant, a very good sign indeed. All the staff are Korean, I’d say very Korean, as the waitress we had spoke very little English and had difficulty remembering our order. She had to come back twice to confirm our order (after she originally confirmed with us twice before leaving). Common sense would be to just write down our order no? Haha.
I wanted to try their noodle dishes (two types of naengmyeon available and an udon dish) but neither were available. Same thing with their appetizer and desserts. Not sure why but the waitress didn’t elaborate. They are closed Mondays but every other day are open from 11:00am-10:00pm. Hours are pretty good! They have some cheap lunch box deals (a la bento box style) although only 4 options are available.
Shrimp, clam and oysters. It comes with a raw egg for you to crack into the soup and is stuffed with an abundance of soft tofu. But wait – there’s more, you also get rice in a hot stone bowl.
The brown rice had peas and almonds mixed to give it some flavour. On it’s own, the rice was pretty bland but mixed in with the soup, it’s all goooood. I was expecting the soup to be spicy and full of Korean goodness but this one was quite simple. It reminded me of a home cooked, comfort style soup. There were several different pieces of seafood (crab legs but how do you get out the meat when it’s not cracked?). Obviously, we had to try it since they have 8 different options to choose from – I’m just curious if the rest of the stews taste similar.
I’ve never seen this offered at a Korean restaurant in Edmonton before. I’ve had it before and it’s delicious. Knowing that, I knew we had to try out Tofu House’s take on bossam. DELICIOUS. Grab a piece of lettuce, add a slice or two of pork, kimchi, pickled radish, marinated cucumbers, raw sliced garlic, hot peppers, and two types of Korean sauce (ssamjang and another spicier sauce I’m not sure of the name) – once you’ve made your masterpiece, fold it in half and you’ve just made yourself one tasty wrap. Seriously, so good! Pricey but a great dish to share with friends.
Korean fried chicken ($23.00)
We got the half and half (deep fried and spicy sauce) so that we could try the best of both worlds. 9 generous pieces of KFC goodness. Fresh, crispy, and not greasy. Satisfying to say the least. I preferred the sweet, tangy sauce over the deep fried one that I sampled. The coleslaw was nothing special, not sure why it was even there, but it was a light contrast to all the fried chicken being consumed. Tofu House’s version is good but I don’t think it beats Coco’s or Wing Chicx’s version.
Haemul pajeon ($17.00)
Seafood and green onion pancake. I’m always a bit skeptical ordering pajeon as it seems to be either hit or miss. This one was a hit! Actual pieces of seafood in it and the pancake was light, crunchy and healthy (not only was it stuffed with green onions but red and orange peppers and other veggies). Quality!
Spicy pork bulgogi ($20.00)
Of course, we had to try at least one of their BBQ options. We settled on a spicy pork bulgogi. Nice heat level, the pork bulgogi was flavourful, moist and spicy. comes with side bowls of rice. The onions were nicely caramelized.
Assorted gomtang ($14.75)
Assorted beef bone soup. This one was a BUST. I’ve never ordered this type of soup before (technically, I didn’t even order it soooo) but my dining mates absolutely hated it. I had a taste of the broth and it had a very odd, bland after taste to it. Those two black side containers had salt and chili flakes in it, which we added to try and up the flavour, but that failed miserably. I think there was over 3/4 of it left on the table. This coming from a group of four dudes that eat everything too. I guess there always has to be an off dish and this was the one.
We left the restaurant completely stuffed. Tofu House is a welcome addition to the ever expanding list of Korean restaurants in town. Hopefully they can work out a few kinks with service and having their full menu available. Prices lean a bit more to the expensive side but it really depends on what you order and how many people you’re eating with (aka. invite friends so you can try more!). Make sure to try their bossam if it’s one thing you take away from this. I’ll be back for their noodles next time.
5020 – 97 Street