10.331 Myong Tae Gui


2 (Mon) December 2019

Myong Tae Gui


at Kaya

-Bel Air, Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines-

with Korean colleagues, the Family

Tonight was the year-end family dinner for Korean staff.

Prior occasions:


It was the first family dinner since Dr Shin had retired as Regional Director.

Only 8 Korean staff, including me (even if I’m a US citizen, I’m always included – why not, Americans never do anything together), and 4 consultants are currently based in the Regional Office.  At one point, we had over 20.

The room felt empty.

Muk Sabal (1.5): the acorn jelly cakes were mushy.
Modeum Jeon (2.5)
Nakji Myun (2.0): the octopus was flavorless, the noodles were limp.
Gul Bossum (2.0): the oyster-radish salad was dull, the meat was boring.
Myong Tae Gui (4.0): on its own, perhaps a 3.5.

Myeongtae gui – more commonly referred to as “kodari” (코다리) – is a Korean fish dish.  Semi-dried pollack (myeongtae), topped with a sweet-spicy chili-soy-garlic dressing, broiled (gui) to a crisp.

Here, it was perfect.  Perfectly crispy on the outside, still juicy on the inside.  Perfectly balanced dressing, neither too sweet nor too spicy.  Excellent on its own, exquisite with the nurungji tang (burnt rice soup), which provided warmth and roundness.  The meal had not been going that well but ended with a bang.

Nurungji Tang (2.0)

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