Among Mangoplate‘s best rated restaurants is this famous Chinese restaurant, 매화반점, located nearby Konkuk University, on the food street dedicated to Chinese food a short walk from Konkuk University Station exit 5. This street has dozens of Chinese restaurants, all of which serve the main attraction lamb skewers (양꼬치), but Maehwa Banjeom has managed to make more name than others. Thus, you should always expect some sort of a line when you go visit the restaurant.
Although I’ve visited some of the other restaurants on the street, and thoroughly enjoyed them, even I had to visit this place just once to see what the gushing was all about.
We arrived there shortly after 7pm on New Year’s Eve, with two other groups in line before us. We actually got lucky with our arrival time as by the time we had just gotten seated, a much longer line had appeared by the doorway.
Their menu is several pages long, with pictures of each dish to help distinguish what each one is, but we settled for the lamb skewers, deep-fried cream shrimp, and a meat dish, on top of which we got two bottles of Tsingtao beer. The bill was 47,000won in total.
Usually you grill the lamb skewers on your table, but we had the misfortune of being seated at one of the few tables in the joint where it wasn’t an option, and thus had the skewers prepared for us in the kitchen. It’s good to let the experts fry up the meat, but unfortunately it makes the part of actually eating the meat a bigger struggle since it’s super difficult to get it off the skewer! The seasoning on the skewers also felt a tad bit spicier in comparison to what I’d had in the past.
The deep-fried cream shrimp was perhaps my favorite. After all, I love all things shrimp!
I do not remember the name of the meat dish, unfortunately, but I did find it delicious. It’s quite much on the oily side, though, so you might not enjoy it if that’s not your thing (though Chinese food is expected to be oily). The only downside was that the portion size seemed a little tiny for the 15,000won price tag.
Overall it was a pleasant eating experience though I don’t necessarily see myself feeling compelled to visit again 🙂