Restaurants & Bars

San Francisco Bay Area Korean

Mul Naeng Myun @ Bear Korean, Cotati

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Mul Naeng Myun @ Bear Korean, Cotati

Melanie Wong | Jul 25, 2005 11:50 PM

The recent discussion of naeng myun styles,

http://chowhound.com/california/board...

sent me searching for my post last year on the hwe naeng myun (with skate wing) at Bear Korean Restaurant in Cotati (linked below). I had liked it so much, it renewed my interest in Korean food. My next five or six Korean meals were let-downs though, and not until I made it to Totoro in Mountain View and Myung Dong Tofu Cabin in Santa Clara a couple months ago did I find anything that I enjoyed as this unassuming spot in Cotati.

With the weekend's heat wave, cold buckwheat noodles seemed like just the ticket again, and I returned to Bear Korean yesterday. The eight panchan were as good as I remembered, each one sparkled in its own way and I devoured every bit of them. From left to right at the top, a light potato salad studded with cucumber and juicy cubes of apple, daikon kimchee, marinated bean sprouts, and garlicky-spicy pressed bean cake and scallions. Then on the bottom row, sesame-dressed zucchini, japchae, miso-garlic spinach, and medium-aged kimchee. These were all excellent.

My waiter attacked the bowl of mul naeng myun with the scissors as soon as he put it down, messing it up before I could snap a shot of its artful composition. It was topped with dryish thin slices of gristly beef shank, half a hard-boiled egg, toasted sesame seeds, and a julienne of cucumber and apple-pear. I added a bit of tart-hot prepared mustard to the mix. The noodles were as bouncy and elastic as before, though I think like Hong, I must be more of a bibim person than a mul one, as I preferred the chili sauce version over this cold broth.

I continue to be impressed with the food here, especially the panchan. It would be great to hear opinions from those who know more about this cuisine than I do on what else is good here.

Bear Korean Restaurant
8577 Gravenstein Highway
Cotati, CA 94931
(707) 794-9828
http://www.koreandining.com
(10% discount coupon)

Link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

Image: http://home.earthlink.net/~melaniewon...

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