Masil Charcoal Grill Restaurant, formerly named Seoul Fusion, is located in an alley within Ortigas Home Depot along Julia Vargas Avenue. We didn't easily notice the restaurant from the main road, but with Manong Guard's advice, we entered the street with Ministop on the left and Starbucks on the right. At the far end of the path, we saw the Korean BBQ gem with its signage reading Masil Korean Charcoal Grill Restaurant.
Based from research, I found out that Seoul Fusion used to be a really small Korean BBQ place a few years ago. Now, aside from changing its name to Masil, it also expanded housing about 10 tables for groups of four. They even have a second floor!
|Every table has a barbecue exhaust nozzle so diners won't completely smell like BBQ after a meal.|
While I really like the spacious, comfy and air-conditioned dining space of Masil, the al fresco area felt homey, refreshing and revitalizing too. I'm positive that this is their smoking area, but I'd gladly sit here if only the weather weren't as humid as usual.
Anyway, upon getting seated, we were handed Masil's menu which held a wide variety of meat offerings for grilling. They have different cuts of beef and pork which are all available either plain or marinated. And after ordering some of Masil's bestsellers, we were promptly served with these banchan (Korean side dishes), as well as other condiments.
After I snapped the banchan photo, we were even served with more side dishes, so we knew this is going to be a great Korean BBQ pigging out experience. Also, unlike other restaurants, Masil Charcoal Grill Restaurant serves free soup. And not just any ordinary broth soup for that matter, but a spicy and hearty seafood and soft tofu stew!
|Complimentary banchan: boiled chayote squash, steamed egg, green onion pancake, kimchi, pickled bamboo shoots, spinach in sesame oil, spicy pickled cucumbers, salad, and pickled radish|
|Complimentary bowl of Sundubu jjigae (spicy seafood and tofu stew)|
|Refillable perilla leaves, lettuce and bok choy for wrapping pleasure;|
Raw garlic, green chilies, and dipping sauces
Korean Charcoal Grill BBQ
Our table quickly got filled with lots of good stuff. And after just a few more minutes, we were already served with these glorious plates of raw meats ready for grilling.
Just a short disclaimer, these meat servings except for the So Galbi are only half of the regular portions. Normally, Masil Charcoal Grill Restaurant doesn't serve up half portions unless stated on their menu. However, since we wanted to try different items without getting extremely full, Ms. Sarang suggested we try the items in half sizes.
|So Galbi, Deji Galbi, Masil Bulgogi and Mak Chang|
Although the raw meats looked enticing already (not that I'm into a raw carnivore diet), we got more excited when our friendly server lit up the charcoal for our tabletop griller. And while I'm no picky BBQ eater, I prefer charcoal-grilled meats if possible 'cause unlike meats cooked using a gas griller, charcoal adds more smoky flavors to the food.
Our server grilled the So Galbi -- US beef short ribs seasoned and marinated in a sweet sauce to medium doneness, before cutting them in smaller pieces. I tried it without any condiments, and I can't help but be hooked. Every bite unlocks a tender and succulent meaty goodness with lots of sweet and savory flavors. But of course, eating it Korean-style, wrapped in leaves with kimchi and ssamjang (soybean-chili paste) is good too.
|✓ So Galbi (P450)|
Next on our tabletop griller was Deji Galbi -- pork rib meat seasoned and marinated in a sweet sauce. Like the first item, this was also cooked to medium doneness on our request before getting cut up in smaller pieces. And like its beef counterpart, this was also very meaty and very succulent. However, unlike its beef sibling, I found this serving sweeter. I tried eating it in Korean fashion but it was so flavorful that it stands out too much. So personally, I'll pair this sweet and savory pork item with hot, steamed rice.
|Deji Galbi (P280)|
We then had the Masil Bulgogi grilled next. This is a serving of US beef marinated in Masil's special sweet sauce. At first, I thought it would have the same sweet and savory flavor like the first two BBQ items. However, this had a less sweet note but oozes with tons of savory goodness and garlicky hints. I enjoyed every bite off this meaty treat. And among all the meats we had that day, I think this is my favorite to be eaten Korean-style. Dipping it in a little gireumjang (salt and black pepper in sesame oil) then wrapping it in leaves with kimchi, pickled radish and some ssamjang was just so enjoyable!
|✓ Masil Bulgogi (P350)|
Our last BBQ item was Mak Chang or pork intestines. While I enjoy the local chicken isaw, I'm normally not too fond of the pork counterpart. However, it was interesting to try this delicacy Korean style. Unlike the first 3 meat items we had, these pork intestine pieces came with its own special sauce made with fermented soybeans. And while I'm not a big fan, I can't deny that I also enjoyed munching on every piece wrapped or naked.
|Mak Chang (P300)|
This is actually what I love about eating at Korean BBQ places. There's really no right or wrong way of eating the meats. I can eat them as is or wrap them in leaves. I can even put anything I want in the wrap before rolling it up! I can mix and match and find what banchan tastes best with certain meat items. And when I find the perfect match for my palate, every roll just oozes with a beautiful harmony of fresh and savory flavors. Yum!
|Mak Chang dipped in light doenjang sauce|
|This is how my Korean BBQ wrap look like before I roll and gobble them up.|
|I alternate using lettuce, bok choy and perilla leaves, and I also put random banchan into my wrap.|
Non-BBQ Dishes at Masil
Aside from meats for grilling, Masil also carries other items on its menu. They have a selection of soup, stir-fries, cooked seafood dishes, noodles and set meals.
Among these non-BBQ items, we got to try the Dolsot Bibimbap which is steamed rice with sautéed beef and mushrooms, assorted vegetables, raw egg, sesame oil and chili paste served in a hot stone pot. The way to enjoy this rice dish is to mix all the ingredients together until every grain of rice is coated with the sauce. Each spoonful of this mixed rice item was oozing with sweet and savory flavors. And with generous amount of meat toppings, an order is already a complete meal on its own.
|✓ Dolsot Bibimbap (P280)|
Since my friend Stacy is a big fan of Sam Gye Tang -- whole ginseng chicken soup with glutinous rice, we decided to also try out this special Korean soup. Frankly, this bowl reminded me strongly of chicken arroz caldo or even Chinese congee with chicken. Unlike those 2 though, Sam Gye Tang is lighter in taste and has a runnier consistency. And since the chicken itself is boiled in Korean ginseng broth, this dish isn't just an item to fill the stomach, but also a great recovery food. However, while the chicken is very succulent and beautifully cooked, I don't think I'll be craving for a bowl any time soon since it really struck me as a medicinal dish perfect for someone who has fever.
|Sam Gye Tang (P600)|
To end our very filling Korean meal and to cleanse our palate at the same time, we were given a complimentary slice of pineapple. Now for my fellow dessert lovers, I'm not sure if Masil Charcoal Grill Restaurant serves some. But if ever, you can ask if they have dessert options or maybe some Korean ice cream at the very least. *wink*
By the way, if you live or work in the Ortigas area, you might want to check out Masil's lunch special available from 11:30AM to 3PM. I haven't personally tried it out yet but it looks like a good deal as you'll already get a lot of authentic Korean dishes for just P450.
After getting a taste of Masil Charcoal Grill Restaurant's offerings, I'm already planning my next trip. Seriously. Everything we got to try on our visit was of really good quality. And while I'll probably skip the samgyupsal since there are places offering them eat-all-you-can, I'll gladly order the So Galbi and Masil Bulgogi again along with other marinated meats and their premium Wagyu beef. And if you're curious about authenticity, I think I can guarantee that Masil serves authentic Korean dishes and BBQ. I may have not been to South Korea yet, but the loyal Korean patrons of the restaurant say it all. Actually, even the Korean TV host Ms. Grace Lee is a regular here at Masil Charcoal Grill!
Taste - 4/5
Ambiance - 4/5
Service - 4/5
Price - 4/5
Overall Value - 4/5
Ambiance - 4/5
Service - 4/5
Price - 4/5
Overall Value - 4/5
Masil Charcoal Grill Restaurant, Ortigas Home Depot
Unit 157-158, Ortigas Home Depot, Dona Julia Vargas Ave.,
Pasig City, Metro Manila, Philippines
Masil Charcoal Grill Restaurant's Menu
Posted in: charcoal grill, food, grill, korean, korean barbecue, meat, ortigas, ortigas home depot, pasig city