4 (Mon) July 2011
T-Bone Steak with Mashed Potatoes and Mushroom Gravy
at Richard Copycat’s All-American Diner
-Itaewon, Yongsan, Seoul, Republic of Korea-
with W and DJ
In honor of American Independence Day, an American meal at an American restaurant seemed appropriate. Last year, I made chili-cheese dogs on a camping trip that coincided with the occasion (see 1.179 Chili-Cheese Dogs). This year, without anything specific in mind, I took the family to a place whose name sounded right for the general idea. In the end, the plan was well-intentioned but not very well-executed.
Other than the name, the decision was based on its reputation for certain items and a positive-though-limited experience just a couple nights earlier. 10 Magazine, an English-language glossy that covers various expat topics pertaining to Korea, ranked All-American Diner #4 for best burgers and #10 for best wings in its June issue entitled “Best of the West.” The reviews had prompted me to drop by last Saturday, after dinner, to sample the wings, which I didn’t like, being too heavily breaded, reminiscent of the wings at Hooter’s, but I was impressed by the service and the generosity of the whisky doubles.
However, looking more closely at the menu on this my second visit, I quickly realized that I’d made a mistake. Focused on the “All-American,” I’d failed to consider the “Diner”: other than breakfast fare, burgers, sandwiches, and wings, the options for dinner entrees were limited. I should’ve gone with a burger to play it safe, and to verify the #4 ranking, but I’d just eaten a burger yesterday – if I’d really thought this through, I would’ve saved the burger for today. W did order the bacon cheddar burger, which was excellent. Anyway, I knew that I wasn’t going to enjoy a 23,000-won steak from a diner. My dumbass question to the server: “Is it good?” Server’s noncommittal response: “It’s one of our best sellers.” My dumbass follow-up: “But is it good?” The decidedly less-than-stellar response: “It’s good for the price.” But I hadn’t had a t-bone in ages, and I didn’t feel like experimenting with something called “Chicken Fried Chicken.”
(See also FOODS.)
(See also PLACES.)