Located along Portrush Road in Evandale, the name Hong Bao Restaurant may suggest a Chinese restaurant but this place actually offers reasonably priced tasty Korean food. Complimentary kimchi and pickles are provided with your meal. The kimchi was moist and notably packed a potent spicy punch.
A standard at any Korean restaurant, the Korean Fried Chicken had lovely crisp coating contrasting well with succulent flesh. We ordered two half-sized portions, one with sweet spicy sauce and the other with soy bean sauce. The sweet spicy sauce had the right amount of kick and the soybean sauce imparted a delectable sweet-savoury flavour. Some salad was served alongside to balance out their rich taste.
Korean Fried Chicken (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
Made using a whole chicken, the chicken in their Ginseng Chicken Soup was tender enough to be easily cut with a spoon. The rice, ginseng, spring onion, garlic and jujubes (Chinese date) in the stuffing gave the dish a slight "medical" flavour. This dish comes with a serving of rice, making it a complete meal by itself.
Ginseng Chicken Soup (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
The Beef Bulgogi we chose as the main ingredient for their Bibimbap was cooked just right with the right amount of savoury flavour. The various vegetables and fried egg were good partners to the beef. To best enjoy the dish, pour your desired amount of the spicy sauce over the ingredients and give everything a thorough mix. Other options for the main ingredient include spicy pork, spicy chicken, teriyaki chicken and a vegetarian option.
While it is listed as an entrée dish, the portion size of the Seafood Pancake is generous enough to be shared. The texture of the pancake leaned towards the thicker variety and there was a good quantity of seafood to give the dish a bit of a salty taste. For an extra element of flavour, you can dip the pancake into the sauce provided.
Seafood Pancake (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
The noodles in their Jajangmyeon were cooked to al dente and the various ingredients complemented it well. Jajangmyeon is commonly known as Korean Black Bean Sauce Noodle. It consists of noodle topped with a thick sauce made of salty black soybean paste, diced pork and vegetables. There was enough sauce to give the dish its distinctive flavour and ensure that it was not too dry.
Japchae (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
The rice cakes in the Tteok-bokki had a lovely chewy texture and the fish cakes were a good partner to them. The chilli sauce gave the dish a potent spicy flavour so be aware if you are not used to spicy foods. However, we thought there were more fish cakes than rice cakes in the dish.
Tteok-bokki (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
Ambience of the place is that of a small cafe. We had a table for eight in a separate room and there is a function room at the backyard, away from the main restaurant, if you are dining with a small group. Parking is of little issue with the carpark behind the restaurant offering off-street parking.