After reading a lot of impressive things about the food at this restaurant, I couldn’t wait to head into central London and try it out for myself. And if you’ve already had a sneak-peak at the rating on this one, you can already tell what my thoughts are.
Food - 8/10
Ambiance - 7/10
Service - 8/10
Value for Money - 8.5/10
An excellent choice and great value for money. BiBimBap Soho offers up tasty and flavourful Korean dishes in the heart of London!
Price Range: ££
Telephone: 020 7287 3434
Address: 11 Greek St, Soho, London W1D 4DJ
Nearest Station: Leicester Square or Tottenham Court Road
After my enjoyable experience of Chimeak [popular Korean dish of fried chicken] in the past; I was eager to try out BiBimBaps’ KFC [Korean Fried Chicken]. Unfortunately, the waitress informed us that frier was in fact broken and that the KFCs are currently not available. Instant sad face.
So we only got the Kimchi instead as a starter. Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish made from fermented vegetables such as spicy and pickled cabbage. This was my first time trying Kimchi and I will remind you all that I am a lemon and herb level at Nando’s, so I become instantly cautious when I see the word ‘spicy’ written anywhere on a menu. To my surprise the spice of the Kimchi was bearable and I didn’t find it difficult at all to eat. The taste of the Kimchi is very unique, it is quite sour tasting with a lumpy and soggy texture to go with it. My opinion on the Kimchi is indifferent; I perhaps wouldn’t purchase it again, however, if it was presented to me on a plate as part of my main for example, I would still probably eat it.
The Chicken Teriyaki BiBimBap was the choice I went for. The food comes out served in a hot stone pot, with a bed of rice hiding beneath an assortment of vegetable with pieces of chicken topped on top. My attention was instantly grabbed by the sheer sizzling noise that came from these pots. A noise so satisfying it might as well have its own ASMR YouTube video [I have discovered sizzling ASMR videos do in fact exist!]. I found the gimmick of having the food still cooking as it is served in front of me, very cool indeed!
Because of the sheer heat, I had to wait a good few minutes before it became tolerable to digest. A spoon is provided, so I gave the bowl a good mix to release the sweltering temperature from beneath to help speed up the cooling process… Armed with my chopsticks, I eventually picked up a good mouthful and…..mmmmmm….. the chicken was wonderfully tender with a good level of teriyaki flavouring to go with it. The vegetables and rice balance out the meal very nicely. One of the unique qualities of this dish is that the texture of this dish changes over time, the chicken becomes slightly more charred and the rice becomes tough and crunchy as it continues to cook and stick to the edge of the bowl.
My friends got the Beef Bulogogi BiBimBap and Vegetables Noodles. There was an agreement among us that if you do visit here this restaurant, the BiBimBap is a favourable choice.
The restaurant is on the small side, with only a few number of tables available. BiBimBap don’t actually take bookings so you do really have to time your arrival with non-peak hours to avoid long waiting queues. We arrived at 1pm on a Sunday and we were seated immediately, however not too long after, we noticed a queue forming at the entrance. The restaurants do have bar stools available, which work fine for parties of one or two people but for larger groups, a table is worth the wait to better enjoy the experience.
Most of the interiors fixtures and fittings are simple, but the restaurant is decorated with photographs that hark back to Korean and Asian culture which is warming touch. There are also photographs of guest eating at the restaurant too [not sure if they are famous], which adds a very personable and homely feel to the place.
For a starter, main and drink you are looking at a range of £15 which given the portion size provided is a very good deal in my eyes, and a must-try if you’re looking for Korean food in London. So BiBimBap, you can add this to your ever-growing list of positive reviews! I look forward to my next visit.