Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Wang Dae Bak Korean BBQ Restaurant, China Square and Ding Dong, Ann Siang

Stef and I were heading out for my birthday dinner and our initial plan was to feast on some good old seafood at Market Grill. However, we were greeted by sheets of rain pouring down on us when we met up at our favourite bus stop in front of the Supreme Court. We were still trying to be gung ho about it and convinced ourselves that we would be able to reach Market Grill in that downpour. We took the bus down to Telok Ayer but eventually chickened out from the long walk because we were SO wet and cold. We were near China Square by then so we picked the next best alternative - hot cozy korean BBQ at Wang Dae Bak.

We ordered Pork Belly and Chicken Wings for the barbecue and a kimchi soup. They served us the raw meat quickly but were not very conscientious about barbecuing the meats for us. Eventually we took to barbecuing the meats by ourselves which resulted in slightly charred pork belly and chicken wings as seen in the photos below.

They poured egg around the grill which cooked quickly and was really delicious! The marinated pork belly was good too. Well-marinated, tasty, with fats that melted in my mouth. The cuts were rather thin and while I would prefer thick juicy cuts of pork belly, the thin cuts of pork belly at Wang Dae Bak did keep me warm and happy in that cold night.

The chicken wings were delicious. Fresh and extremely tender, the chicken fell off the bone easily and I love the crispy chicken skin. We asked for more egg because it was really yummy.

The kimchi soup was delicious and the hot soup filled my belly with warmth. On that cold rainy night, with wet feet and clothes, I was very grateful for the hot food on the table, the grill with sizzling meats on top, and the spicy soup that spread warmth in my belly. 

When we were done eating and our hair and clothes were finally dry, we left Wang Dae Bak happily and headed for drinks at Ding Dong along Ann Siang. Thank you Stef for the birthday dinner at Wang Dae Bak and the drinks at Ding Dong! Nothing can beat eating sizzling grilled meats with a good old friend on a cold rainy night :)

Ding Dong was housed in a shop house along Ann Siang with a curved staircase leading up to the main dining area and bar upstairs. I ordered Fujiyama which was yoghurt sake, elderflower liqueur, fresh strawberries and yuzu liqueur. Stef ordered Tommy Moves East which was Don Julio Anejo, yuzu liqueur, agave, and bitters. My drink was sweet and fruity, with a distinct taste of yoghurt. Stef's drink tasted strongly of alcohol and perhaps not much else. I would recommend the Fujiyama if you visit Ding Dong because it is a lighter drink.

But then again, I would not recommend visiting Ding Dong at all because the service sucks. To be fair, the kitchen crew downstairs was friendly and nice (they greeted everybody who went by with enthusiasm) but the waiter on the second floor was so disinterested, I was affronted. Or perhaps, I should say we were discriminated. He clearly placed more emphasis on the Caucasian customers sitting around us and left us to rot in our little corner. First, we took a long while to get his attention to place our orders. When I asked him to refill our glasses of water, he picked up the glasses, poured water in, and slammed the glasses back down on the table. When we asked for the bill, he nodded in our direction and proceeded to fuss around the other customers, chatting with them, having a laugh, went back to the bar to collect their drinks, served their drinks, continued the chat, went to take orders at another table (also filled with Caucasian customers), returned to the bar to place their orders, and then served their drinks. I got his attention again and asked for the bill the SECOND time. Once again, he gave me yet another cursory nod and went to the bar. I thought he was going to get our bill but guess what? He proceeded to chat with the customers (also Caucasian) at the bar! What on earth is going on?! Eventually I got our bill from his female colleague who brought the bill to us promptly. Brownie points to you girl!

I sincerely apologize for not being aware that Ding Dong did not welcome locals. Now that I am aware, I hope everyone is as well.

Wang Dae Bak
#01-64 China Square Central 22 Cross Street
Mon - Sat: 11:30 - 14:30
Mon - Sat: 17:30 - 22:30
Closed on Sunday

Ding Dong
Somewhere in Ann Siang Hill which you need not know because hey, you can spend those bucks somewhere else and get much better treatment. Just go next door. Or next next door. Anywhere but here.

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