14.159 Chinese Buffet

Cycle 14 – Item 159

13 (Tue) June 2023

Chinese Buffet


at Hwaro Yangmi

-Seongsu, Seongdong, Seoul, Republic of Korea-

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Hwaro Yangmi (화로양미) is a Korean-Chinese restaurant.  Specializes in grilled lamb, as well as other dishes from the Yiabian region, brought over by ethnic Koreans (see also 13.146 Geon Dubu Bokkeum).

Located 255 m from the office.

Previously, the restaurant was only open in the evening.  I’ve visited once, for a postprandial round of drinks with staff, though I don’t recall the food.

The handwriting suggests that the writer is a recent immigrant.

Earlier this month, they opened for lunch, offering a buffet.  The spread features dishes that seem vaguely Chinese, vaguely Korean, probably what ethnic Koreans in China eat at home.

Today, the spread included (clockwise from bottom right): celery with glass noodles + kimchi fried rice + mapo doufu + yuxian rousi + spinach & egg soup + Chinese subdubu + cucumber salad + stir-fried potatoes + stir-fried eggplant & mushrooms.

The food was not good.  The flavors were passable, but the execution was sloppy, leaving most the ingredients way overcooked and mushy, and greasy.  As the featured photo suggest, the food doesn’t look very appetizing on the plate.  Nevertheless, I enjoyed the novelty of it, a welcome departure from the standard “Chinese” food in Korea, which is entirely inauthentic and invariant.  7 of the 9 dishes were vegetable-based (Korean-Chinese restaurants typically offer zero vegetable dishes).  And soup (Korean-Chinese restaurants typically offer zero soups, aside from noodle soups)!  9,000 won per customer, which isn’t that cheap (Korean buffets charge around 7,000 won), especially in light of the quality.

Egg Fried Rice (2.5): when I complained (politely) that the steamed rice at the bottom of the steamer was getting kinda dried out and crusty, the manager took it into the kitchen and came back a few minutes later with this, which was one of the better items of the meal.

Still, I can see myself coming back on occasion.



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