date of visit: Wednesday 4 November 2015
I read about Chef Kim about six months ago and even though I love Korean food (well, kimchi …) the fact that it is in Hazelwood Park meant it never made the list.
Still, it’s obviously been sitting in the back of my mind percolating away, as last Wednesday it turned out I had a couple of chores to run at various ends of town and Andy suggested meeting for lunch.
He is constantly on about how poor the lunch selection in Dulwich (the suburb in which he works) is so it was a stroke of genius that saw me remember Chef Kim and float it as a contender.
Andy is not quite as enthusiastic about kimchi as I am (apparently, the idea of kimchi and rice for breakfast is not up there with the all-time great breakfasts … sooooo wrong) but he loves Korean food so we headed off to check it out.
We arrived just before one and there were a couple of biggish tables just finishing up and another table of two – so things were quiet. Wednesday lunch – who’d have thought it?
At lunch the menu is a bit shorter than dinner with the grilled dishes and ‘mains’ not available, but as compensation there is a ‘lunch box’ menu. Andy opted for the spicy pork lunchbox (spicy pork, miso, rice, pickles) and I had the kimchi pancake and dumplings. We paired these with a beer for Andy and the brown rice green tea for me.
The food came out reasonably quickly (but not suspiciously so!) and the kimchi pancake got the thumbs up. Apparently, the kimchi at Chef Kim is house-made: it’s crunchy, spicy and vinegar-y so all good there. The dumplings were really tasty but they weren’t a patch on those you’ll find at Mandoo, which remains my all time dumpling favourite.
Andy’s spicy pork was, indeed spicy and also really good. I got to hoover up the miso and, for $13.80, it was a solid lunch.
The icing on the cake for us was that Chef Kim is in the Entertainment Book and our lunch set us back just $32 (it would have been about $42 otherwise).
While they were hardly under the pump, the service was attentive, efficient and friendly (that’s kind of my holy trinity), without being in your face.
If you have only a half hour for lunch, you might be a bit pressed for time to dine in at Chef Kim but … they do takeaway, so you are sorted.
I loved it there. OK – they served me a kimchi pancake. But I loved it and I have no doubt we’ll make the trip across town again to try out some dishes from the full menu.
Which means – if you live in any of the inner suburbs you should be heading to Chef Kim immediately!
4 Linden Avenue
Hazelwood Park SA 5066
phone: 8338 7831