2.157 Mak Guksu

2.157

11 (Sat) June 2011

Mak Guksu

3.0

from Silbi Sikdang

at my uncle’s cabin

-Changchon, Seowon, Hoengseong, Republic of Korea-

with W and DJ, MtG, CBD

Makguksu (막국수) is a Korean dish.  Buckwheat noodles topped with shredded lettuce, cucumber, and dried laver, seasoned with gochujang and sugar and sesame oil and sesame seeds, and served in a chilled broth, usually made from anchovy stock.  When done right, it’s a refreshing combination of contrasts: spicy and sweet and savory, chewy and crunchy.  Awesome on hot summer days.

The main event was intended to be grilled hanwoo.  Though something of an afterthought – Koreans like to end the meal with some kind of starch, like noodles or rice –  the noodles took over the show.

This very fine example of makguksu comes from an unlikely source. In the famed cattle region of Hoengseong (횡성), in the sleepy farming village of Seowon (서원), along a short strip of paved road – “downtown” – that features 3 Korean restaurants (plus 1 Chinese restaurant, 3 grocery stores, 1 agricultural cooperative, 2 beer joints, 1 noraebang, 1 coffee chop, 1 fire station, 1 catholic church, and 1 elementary school), Silbi Sikdang (실비식당) awaits in the dark, lights turned on only when diners come in.  The house specialty is makguksu, the buckwheat noodles made fresh to order on the premises.

The noodles were so good that we had them for 2 meals in a row, twice in one day, first for lunch and then again for dinner.

The restaurant doesn’t have disposable to-go containers, so a takeout order requires a firm oath to return the dishes and condiments.

(See also FOODS.)

(See also PLACES.)

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