Sunday, July 20, 2008

korean: i strongly recommend HAPPY KOREAN CUISINE



HAPPY KOREAN CUISINE
No. 1, Lane 99, Xin Yi Road, Sec 3
(02) 2703-9237

hours: Lunch: 11:30AM- 2PM;
Dinner 5:30PM- 8:30PM
(closed every second and fourth Monday of each month)

$$

Kid friendliness: VERY! high chairs available plus a little play area in the corner with play kitchenette and toys.

Visit reviewed: 4/15/2008

I can't tell you how happy I am that we found this restaurant that was recommended by a friend. Every dish we ordered was delicious, the service was friendly and it was very affordable.

The English and Chinese menu has lots of pictures and everything from bimbimbap (a mixed vegetables rice) which the beef was slightly sweet and tender like bulgobi to the cold noodles I love to tofu stew to bbq meats.



Located in a little alley not too far from AIT, it's a good spot to hit up after you've been waiting in line all day. Or even if you're not near AIT, if you've been looking for a good casual Korean restaurant in Taipei.



I wasn't sure what to think when it was not crowded during the first time we went, on a weekday lunch, but the complimentary fresh panchan was a good sign- I always love it when japchae is included.



Little touches like that were continued throughout everything we received- the bimbimbap in a stone bowl (NT$190) had a bit of seaweed strips on top;



the cold noodles (NT$160) (which you can get with or without the soup) had thin slices of both radishes and pear in the soup which made a great layer of sweet and savory combination that was already in the vinegary soup.



On the second time we went, on a weekend, I made a reservation with a large group and thankfully I did because it was packed full with families. To be honest, the service was slower since they were busier and the seafood pancakes weren't as good (not as crispy) as the first time, so maybe try it out when they are less busy if you want to ensure the best experience.

They also offer vegetable pancake for the vegetarians out there- as well as vegetarian bimbimbap or cold noodles or tofu stew (which some Korean restaurants have few or no vegetarian options).





We also spotted a little playarea in the corner for kids to play which is such a great idea and makes the restaurant especially family friendly.



Until now, I had been fulfilling my cravings for Korean food at the food court at the various malls or doing the bbq beef at Mindong which is only open in evenings and also packed- but now this is a place that will top my list.

Especially with the "naengmyeon" or soupy cold noodles being a perfect way to beat the Taipei heat! It's the best version of it I've found at any of the Korean restaurants in Taipei.

10 comments:

1pinecone said...

I adore your blog! I'm trying to do reviews on things I've eaten in Taiwan as well, but sometimes I just get too lazy to whip out the camera before everyone starts eating.

joanh said...

1pinecone: thanks! i hear what you are saying.. it takes awhile to get rolling. lately, i have the pictures, but it's taking longer to write the posts! hope to hear from you again.

KevCheng said...

Hi jonah,
Gah, you're totally right. I have meals and meals of photos but it takes me a whole evening to write one entry!

Anyway, love what you're doing, wish I was in Taipei, too.

Sera said...

oh god I miss korean food. Do you know of any korean restaurant with good stews and which can cater to a small drinking party?

joanh said...

kevcheng: thanks! good luck w/ the writing..

sera: do you mean in taipei? happy korean has some stews.. you can also check out mindong- that is more of a drinking/party atmosphere, but you gotta make reservations.

KevCheng said...

Sera,
I can recommend a great stew place if you're ever in LA. The beef stew is #12 on the menu and it is excellent.

http://laist.com/2008/07/27/korean_feast_ondal_2.php

KevCheng

Sera said...

joanh, thanks for the comment! you're my first. and i'll definately see about checking out mindong.

kevcheng, thanks for the tip~ i'm from the north jersey/manhattan area and i think the coasts definately would have the best korean food.

Anonymous said...

hey-
i went to this place the other day cuz i've been looking for actual korean food (which is hard to find in taiwan) and so i searched on your blog for a recommendation. i was really excited because i loooove nengmyun and so i took my friend before class but unfortunately i was 100%disappointed. i don't know how to explain but it tasted really really strange, like a mix between wood and chemicals. and also mulnengmyun is usually served with vinegar and mustard. but they served it with vinegar and gochujang. i took a couple bites and noticed the funny taste and i was hoping i could save it by adding mustard. but when i asked for it , the guy went in the back for a while and came back with some really watery version in a dish. and it made it taste even worse! dunno what went wrong but my experience was compleeetely different from yours :(.

joanh said...

anonymous: i'm sorry to hear that you didn't have a good experience with the nengmyun... did you get the kind in cold broth or dry? i know that the cold broth one is better. i think we got mustard when we ordered it- maybe they ran out that day? i know once i went with some friends, and they didn't have nengmyun that day. have you had any luck finding other korean restaurants you can recommend?

hR said...

Hi! I just moved to Taipei a couple weeks ago, and I've been craving Korean cold noodles for much longer than that. I'm so happy you've given your review on where to find them in this mad city!

I find your blog inspiring, it was something I thought about doing before I moved here, and I see you've already tapped the market, lol. Congratulations! Everyone I've met so far is very familiar with your site and your reviews, and I can't think of anything so rewarding in the blogosphere. Keep up the good work!

Cheers!

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