8 Korean BBQ continues its winning formula of offering value-for-money quality ingredients at accessible city locations by opening a new outlet. It’s second restaurant at Shaw Centre, three years after its flagship store at The Central , Clarke Quay, proves that the K-wave it pretty much alive today.
“The K-trend is still very predominant in Singapore; with our expansion and introduction of new menu items like the Big Hog Plate, we aim to offer our well-versed diners greater accessibility to Korea’s hip barbecue experience,” says owner Jamie and Kristin Lim. They also hoped that the city outlet can attract executives working in the area.
New item – Big Hog Plate
In conjunction with its opening, 8 Korean BBQ adds to its menu, the Big Hog Plate – a chunky cut of pork belly which they say is a trending item at barbecue eateries across Korea now. Having been to Korea a few times and most recently in October, we have always thought that the thick cut item is readily available at BBQ places in Korea, especially the more prized black pork.
Nevertheless, the could-be-better-named dish is a generous slab (360g) of quality Hungarian Mangalitsa pork belly that is priced at $45. The pork is lightly seasoned with salt and black pepper before slicing into cubes and tossing on the grill with onions and king oyster mushrooms. We appreciate the restaurant’s light touch seasoning to allow the meat’s natural flavours to shine through. What surprises us is that this dish is served with traditional mugwort rice cake. The texture of the rice cake is similar to muah chee or mochi but the restaurant took the extra effort to grill them, creating a crispy crust with a warm and chewy inside. Honestly, we will go just to try out the mugwort rice cakes.
Nevertheless, could be better named dish is a generous slab (360g) of quality Hungarian Mangalitsa pork belly that is priced at $45. The pork is lightly seasoned with salt and black pepper before slicing into cubes and tossing on the grill with onions and king oyster mushrooms. The light touch seasoning allows the meat’s natural flavours to shine through. What surprises us is that the dish is served with traditional mugwort rice cake. The texture of the rice cake is similar to muah chee but the restaurant took the extra effort to grill them, creating a crispy crust with a warm and chewy inside. Honestly, we will go just to try out the mugwort rice cakes.
Value lunch sets in the city
Lunch at 8 Korean BBQ starts from $15. Their signature Chul Pan (Specialty Hot Grill) set comes with thinly-sliced meats (choice of chicken, pork belly or beef) and assorted vegetables such as beansprouts, spring onions and Chinese cabbage. The set is stir-fried at the table on a grill pan and flavoured with a homemade sweet and spicy sauce. If the queue doesn’t get crazy at Shaw Centre outlet, 8 Korean BBQ promises that you will be in and out within an hour, ample time to enjoy the lunch. You can ask for the rice that comes with the set to be stir-fried together with the ingredients to soak up all the flavours.
If you are going for the Chul Pan lunch, go with a colleague. Unless you are a very big eater, you won’t be able to finish it as this dish requires a minimum order of two portions of meat.
Other lunch items include Beef Bulgogi Bibimbap ($18), Seafood Bibimbap ($18), Kimchi Fried Rice ($8), Spicy Pork or Bulgogi Beef Stir-fried, Pork Kimchi Stew and steamed rice ($18) and Black or White Ginseng Chicken Soup ($18). All lunch sets are served with a side of seasonal fruits and free-flow homemade banchan (Korean appetisers).
Signature ‘8’ dishes
For diners not familiar with 8 Korean BBQ, the restaurant serves a range of ‘8’ themed dishes like the 8 Colours Bibimbap ($16) and 8 Colours Set ($98) of Hungarian Mangalitsa pork belly marinated in eight flavours. The marinates are wine, original, garlic, herb, curry, miso, red pepper paste or kalbi, arranged from the lightest flavour to the strongest. The pork belly strips can also be order individually at $12 per piece.
Drinks, drinks, drinks
For us, having a drink with grilled meats completes the Korean BBQ experience and 8 Korean BBQ restaurant serves a good range of Makgeollis (fermented Korean rice wine). Options include Organic Honey Makgeolli ($35), Yucha Makgeolli ($35), Passionfruit Makgeolli ($35) and Joo Brew ($28) to go with your meal.
The new 80-seater Shaw Centre restaurant is equipped with state-of-the art ventilation system to ensure that you don’t walk out smelling like grilled meat. Any if that doesn’t work, spritz some fabric odour eliminator on your clothes provided by them at no extra charge.
Address: #04-20/21, Shaw Centre, 1 Scotts Road, Singapore 228208
Phone: +65 9018 9212
Opening hours: Monday to Friday: 11.30am – 2.30pm Lunch (Last Order 2pm), 5.30pm – 10.30pm Dinner (Last Order 10pm), Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays: 11.30am – 10.30pm