Whenever I'm craving for meat, the first thing that crosses my mind are Korean BBQ houses. Why, you ask? Well, aside from the scrumptious Korean side dishes called banchan that never fail to whet my palate, I just love the interactive cook-your-own meat dining style. However, lately some Korean BBQ houses are taking the whole experience even up a notch by offering everything, both meats and side dishes, unlimited. One of which I've recently visited is Matgalne Korean Restaurant in Kalayaan Avenue, Makati.
Located specifically in Kalayaan Avenue corner Mariano Street, Matgalne Korean Restaurant isn't really a new player in the market. In fact, this Korean restaurant owned by Mrs. Windy Park, opened way back in 2003. And of course, being the meat lovers we are, my friend and I decided to give it a visit last week, especially now that they have a new promo of offering the lunch buffet at only P299! The place and the rate actually reminded me of another Korean BBQ house in Quezon City, Don-Day Fresh Restaurant. One difference though is Matgalne offers lunch from 11:30AM all the way up to 4:30PM. Now, we don't find lunch buffets lasting this long, so it's definitely a good feat!
I'm not sure if Matgalne Restaurant now has an English or romanized signage outside. But if they still haven't put up one yet, here's how the establishment's Korean signage looks like. Frankly, we had a little trouble looking for the place since we don't frequent Kalayaan Avenue. Good thing though, my friend Fel can read Hangul so I was literally asking her to read almost every Korean BBQ house's signage to find Matgalne.
Although I don't mind the non-air conditioned space of Don-Day Fresh, I can't deny I was super happy to find out that Matgalne Korean Restaurant has air-conditioners. It makes grilling and devouring all the more comfortable especially with the very humid summer weather we're having. Oh, another thing I noticed at Matgalne are their BBQ grills. Instead of installing grills onto every tabletop, Matgalne has a separate burner.
Speaking of grilling, let me already share with you the scrumptious meaty treats we had.
|Unlimited Samgyupsal (pork belly)|
|Unlimited Chadolbaegi (beef)|
Most Korean BBQ places I know offering eat-all-you-can is only for samgyupsal, but in Matgalne, lunch buffet at P299 won't only give you unlimited pork, but even unlimited beef! And with these servings on our table, my friend and I wasted no time cooking them.
We enjoyed taking turns cooking and flipping these beautiful pieces of meat. And this is what I really like about Korean BBQ restaurants... We can cook the meats to our liking -- cooked all the way through for Fel, and a little less done for me. (Both are equally good!)
And here's how we ate our unlimited samgyupsal and chadolbaegi, Korean style -- wrapped in lettuce leaves with kimchi and raw garlic. You can also add condiments like gireumjang (salt and black pepper in sesame oil) or ssamjang (soybean-chili paste).
Aside from unlimited meats, Matgalne offers more than 20 kinds of side dishes to make the dining experience more enjoyable. I wasn't able to try everything, but here's a look at my first plate. I guarantee that every item I had was yummy, and they're all MSG-free too!
Since I wasn't able to try everything, let me just take you on a virtual tour of the dishes I got to take photos of. I think I missed the Spicy Vegetable Soup with Tofu and Hobakjuk (Korean winter squash porridge) though, but I heard they were good.
|Leaves for wrapping|
|Mattang (caramel-glazed sweet potatoes)|
|Beosot Jeon (mushroom pancake)|
|Ham Jeon (Korean pancake with ham)|
|Eggplant Jeon (Korean pancake with eggplant)|
|Gyeran Mari (Korean rolled omelette)|
|Kimbap (Korean "sushi" rolls)|
|Japchae (stir-fried glass noodles with vegetables)|
|Jumeok Bap (dried seaweed rice balls)|
|Kimmari (japchae-stuffed seaweed rolls)|
|Onjingeo Bokkeum (Korean spicy stir-fried squid)|
|Dak Kang Jung (sweet and spicy chicken)|
|Bibimbap (Korean mixed rice) section|
I'm not sure if there's something like this in South Korea, but I know a lot of Koreans who love our banana turon! Even my little sister's Korean schoolmates love these.
See? I told you there were a lot of side dishes at Matgalne Korean Restaurant. Among them though, the item I wanted to try the most was the bibimbap. Sadly, I was already too full to do so. I guess this gives me all the more reason for a returning visit. *wink*
This trip definitely satisfied our meat cravings. We enjoyed every piece of pork and beef we cooked. And to go along with the carnivorous satisfaction from Matgalne are their wide array of side dishes which are equally great-tasting, very fitting since Matgalne means "masarap" or delicious. Service is prompt and friendly too, and the restaurant itself is definitely comfortable. So for a promo price of P299 for lunch, I say with conviction that this is a steal! Actually, even their dinner rate at P399 can already give very good value for money. So if you're up for a Korean BBQ-all-you-can, then don't miss Matgalne Korean Restaurant!
Ambiance - 4/5
Service - 4/5
Price - 5/5
Overall Value - 4/5
Lunch Buffet (Until June 30, 2013) - P299
11:30AM to 4:30PM
Dinner Buffet - P399
5:30PM to 11PM
Matgalne Restaurant, Main Branch
4768 Kalayaan Ave. Cor. Mariano St., Poblacion
Makati City, Metro Manila
Open Mondays to Saturdays
2F Millenium Place Bldg., Meralco Ave.,
Ortigas Center, San Antonio
Pasig City, Metro Manila
Open Mondays to Saturdays