Ah, my first food blog post. Boy did I want this to be a good experience since this will be the first memory I have blogging about food. Lol, nope.
Me and a friend were shopping at Lougheed and decided to eat at Ddoo Gau Bee since I had a great experience and a really good sweet potatoes side dish there 4 months ago. We got there around 6:40 and they were super busy, nearly every table was full along with some sort of party going on as well. Me and my friend were seated quickly next to a window and given menus and tea. There were some confusion ordering because they changed their menus recently and a few dishes (including my favourite) were gone from the menu, I asked the servers about my favourite dish (AlBap - fish eggs on rice) and they seemed confused as to it being taken off the menu and if it was still offered. In the end it wasn’t, so me and my friend settled for a different dish instead.
After we gave them our order at 6:55, they arrived with our banchans (side dishes). 4 months ago when I went, their side dishes were sweet potatoes, seaweed (I think), Kimchi and the pickled daikon. This time, they only served 2 side dishes, the Kimchi and the daikon. I asked about the sweet potatoes but apparently, they don’t serve that anymore. Basically they only offer half the banchans now and it’s not even the sweet potatoes that everyone knows and loves.
The daikon was too sweet for my liking but the Kimchi was good at least.
And then, I kid you not, we waited half an hour for our next dish to arrive. We ordered at 6:55 and the dish finally arrived, after asking the servers more than 5 times, at 7:25. Lol what. I get that they were busy but it was just one dish, 30 minutes for Japchae and a bowl and rice and miso soup isn’t acceptable. At some points, me and my friend actually wanted to walk out of the restaurant. The only thing stopping us was that fact that we already touched the banchans and drank their tea. If not for that, we actually would have just walked out and felt like we haven’t missed a thing.
Pan Fried Noodle On Rice - $8.99
I love how they had their dishes customized to say their name but they don’t even bother with better banchans. So by “On Rice”, they mean “we’ll give you a bowl of rice to go with it”. Anyways, the Japchae was well made, albeit a little too saucy and oily at the bottom of the dish but the noodles were cooked perfectly, the veggies were fresh with still a little crunch left in them and it was a solid dish in general. Rice is rice, it wasn’t over-cooked or under-cooked, same scenario with the miso soup. I would say for 9 bucks, the dish could have been a little bigger.
Once this dish came, my friend realized she wanted the Black Bean Sauce on Noodle since she was watching the table across from us eat that during our 30 minutes wait so she ordered it as well. This time it didn’t take half an hour, but still a nice 20 minutes. We ordered at 7:25, dish came at 7:45 along with the bill, you can actually see when they punched in the order on the reciept. I feel that JjaJjangMyeon isn’t a difficult dish seeing all you need to do is cook the noodle and reheat the sauce since we do the mixing ourselves. Something as simple as that shouldn’t take a good 20 minutes to come.
Black Bean Sauce On Noodles - $5.99 (Sorry, we started mixing before we remembered to take a picture)
This was actually really good! Me and my friend both preferred this to the JapChae. The noodle was a little bit overcooked but the sauce was perfect, it had cabbage, pork, cucumbers and some other things that I can’t tell in the sauce. It was really good for what it was! The noodles were also too long so it would have been nice if they cut it a little or gave us a pair of scissors to do so ourselves. Portion-wise was okay, not too much, not too less. But overall, this is a dish we would re-order if we would ever go back.
The total came to about $17 bucks. Personally, I would never go back and if my friends were to ask me about Ddoo Gau Bee, I would discourage them on going. Not just because of the decrease in quality and the ever-lasting wait time for the dishes but because there were a few issues there. Me and my friend were seated on a booth next to their glass-front and when people smoked, it easily went through the cracks and anyone sitting near a window (which is like the entire store-front) can easily smell it. It’s nauseating to be eating and then have the smell of cigarettes waft by. It’ll be nice if the restaurant did something about that. I don’t know about Ddoo Gau Bee’s MSG policy but I suspect that there was at least some MSG in our dishes as I felt quite thirsty after leaving the restaurant and then eating the leftovers at home. Another issue was the service, not only about the wait time, but when me and my friend were leaving, we saw a table that was seated 5 minutes ago having to ask for menus from a server. The servers were polite but they were… I guess confused. So due to these issues and the experience I had, I doubt I’ll step foot in this restaurant again.