We know a little something about barbecue here in Australia – we'll fire up the barbie for just about any occasion. Koreans give us a run for our money with the grilling, masterfully serving up sizzling dishes to share. From Korean BBQ to fried chicken or kimchi-tinged hot pots, Korean food is becoming a major food trend in Melbourne. Give it a go at these tasty restaurants.
1. Seoul Soul
Bibimbap is as fun to eat as it is to say. Seoul Soul lets you choose between beef or pork bulgogi, chicken, mushroom or tofu bowls. All come with veggies, a fried egg and plenty of the signature house-made chilli paste sauce to stir around for a fiery kick. The kimchi's homemade too, and you'll find it in liberal doses throughout the menu. Kimchi fries are the perfect late-night snack, while the kimchi noodle soup gives your immune system a helping hand. Need to cool down after all that chilli paste and kimchi? Refresh yourself So-Ko style with a glass of sikhye, a sweet rice and barley punch.
Get down with Korean fried chicken at Chick-In. These guys really know how to treat a bird. Dig into sticky chicken ribs, sweet-glazed battered wings or crispy schnitzel. Head Chef Ryu JongHyun trained in NYC and perfected his technique at Momofuku Ssam Bar, to get the flavours just right here. Chick-In offers a modern take on traditional Korean cuisine, with dishes like avocado bibimbap and skewered rice cakes hitting all the right notes for Melbourne cool kids. Invite your friends over and make a party of it with a whole chicken and your choice of combos.
3. Chimac Korean Bistro
Another go-to eatery for the latest and greatest take on modern Korean, Chimac Korean Bistro specialises in chicken and fusion dishes. Their chicken and beer pack is probably the greatest invention since Vegemite on toast. Get the 'Chimac Fever' house party pack and you'll be treated to a six-pack of beer, an entire chicken, kimchi carnitas and other Mexican-tinged mashups like bulgogi quesadillas. The chicken comes in your choice of flavours, from spicy and sweet to a garlicky soy sauce.
4. Kimchi Grandma
Traditionalists will love Kimchi Grandma, serving old-fashioned, granny-approved Korean fare. Put on a bib for this and load up on extra napkins, because the BBQ beef spare ribs can get a little messy. Sweet and sticky, you'll be licking every drop of the soy marinade off of your fingers. This is also a hotspot for hot pots, including a killer kimchi stew with pork, bean curd and spring onions. Don't miss out on the assortment of tasty side dishes, like chewy pan-fried dumplings and chilled seaweed salad.
5. Hwatu Authentic Korean
Take your taste buds on a tour of Korean flavours at Hwatu Authentic Korean. If you're torn between the fried chicken, BBQ or noodles, you can order all of the above. The recipes are authentic, including dishes you won't find on the more Westernized menus in town like spicy chicken feet. You'll be coming back for more of the noodle and rice dishes, like jap chae. These sweet potato noodles are sweet and chewy, stir fried in a sesame-soy sauce with tender beef and mixed veg. Spicy cold noodles are a refreshing antidote to the blazing Melbourne sun, topped with cooling cucumber and boiled egg.
Melbourne's Asian food scene is second to none, whether you're in the mood for Thai takeaways or a bit of Chinese food. You can now order the best of the city's Korean fare from Deliveroo, delivered straight to your door.