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Restaurants & Bars 3

sahn maru -- excellent korean food in downtown/tenderloin

solly | Apr 7, 200405:33 PM

My girlfriend and I just returned from a satisfying lunch at Sahn Maru. I'll let my girlfriend, a Korean food expert, do all the writing:

We ordered haemul pajun (seafood pancake), kalbi (barbecued beef ribs), and haemul soondubu jigae (seafood soft tofu stew). The pajun came out sizzling on a cast iron plate, which was nice, since sometimes they transfer the pajun to a plate to serve it, which doesn't keep it as crispy. This one had whole stalks of green onion, shreds of red bell pepper, and many big pieces of squid, shrimp, and oysters. It was a little thicker than some restaurants do - I think it was a more country, rustic type of pajun. It was nicely crispy, very big, and very tasty.

The soondubu also came with big pieces of squid, a very large mussel, shrimp, and many pieces of zucchini. The tofu wasn't quite right, as it was a little too firm and consequently wasn't amalgamated into the soup. They also didn't serve it with a raw egg to crack into the pot, which is not quite right. The soup was very good and tasted very fresh, but did not taste like a correct soondubu. Somehow the flavor was thinner than it should have been.

The kalbi was quite good. It was sliced "L.A." style and was very very tender. The marinade was just right, and this was also served on top of some grilled onions on a hot cast iron plate, which was embedded in a wooden plate.

Panchan included four different types of kimchee, odang (fishcake) which was very good, kongnamul (soybeans) which were very fresh and prepared with a light touch, and seaweed salad, which was also very good but not quite as fresh as the soybeans.

The service was very very helpful and very nice, much more hospitable than most korean places that we've been to. We also noticed that there are many "homey" types of dishes that you don't often find in restaurants: kalgooksu, al jigae, and various other dishes.

Sahn Maru
177 Eddy St.

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