Down the hill of Bukit Gambir, there is a humble and quiet Korean cafe manned by a Korean. Menu is simple but earnest, offering some of their best dishes. No, you can't find Korean Barbecue or Bulbogi here. One good reason to visit the cafe will be their wallet-friendly price, most of the items are priced less than Rm 11 with no additional surcharges. However, I did not think all of the dishes we had were good (with some not up to par). Nevertheless, it can be the place to satiate your cravings for Kim Chi or Korean delicacies without putting a dent on your wallet. Korean Cafe Gil is situated at Ivory Plaza, right beside Istimewa Nasi Kandar.
Chicken Bibimbap/ Korean Mixed Rice (Rm 9.50) is perfect for the health-conscious in you. The order comes with a side of Kimchi (refillable upon request), julienned Cucumbers and Carrots, steaming hot Rice, Stir Fried Chicken, Onions and Mushrooms; finished with a perfectly cooked Sunny Side Up. The real draw of the dish will be their sweet and savory Korean Chili Paste which can be lip-numbingly hot for some. It was decent but not mind-blowing, quite a standard Bibimbap but it stands out due to its wallet-friendly price tag.
If you prefer to enjoy your Bibimbap piping hot, go for their Hot Pot Bibimbap (Rm 10) which shares the same ingredients as the normal version of Bibimbap but the portion for this Hot Pot Bibimbap was clearly smaller than the usual Bibimbap. Normal or Hot Pot? Your choice.
Not a fan of rice? No worries. Gil has more than that to offer, they have a few choices of noodle-dishes. I had Kalguksu/ Seafood Knife Noodles (Rm 10.50) which consisted of some home-made Noodles, julienned Potatoes, Carrots, Pear Squash, Onions and a measly amount of Seafood (a couple of Octopus and a small-sized Prawn). Served hot, it was certainly a hearty dish to go with. However, I thought the soup was very "instant noodle-like" if you know what it means. The dish was quite bland as a whole and I had to add in some Korean Chili Paste for the extra kick. Quite a let down.
Their Ddukbokgi/ Korean Spicy Rice Cakes (Rm 9) was another dish that I enjoyed (apart of Bibimbap). The sauce has a balance medley of sweet, savory and spicy notes. Stir fried with Korean Fish Cakes, Cabbages and Carrots, I thought the dish was well-executed. The Rice Cakes were cooked till perfection, with a chewy and slightly resilient texture, it works pretty well with the addictive Ddukbokgi sauce. A worth-trying dish at Gil.
Sweet treat was Boongeo Pang/ Crucian Carp Cake (Rm 4.50) with Red Bean filling. Served to us warm, the fluffy and slightly crispy texture was comforting but the measly filling was a complete disappointment, as though we were having the empty cake for most of the time. Good attempt for novelty sake but I am not sure if I am willing to place my order for these next time....
Service Charge: No
Government Tax: No
Pork-Free and Wifi Available
Address: 2-1-1, Ivory Plaza Halaman, Bukit Gambir, 11700, Gelugor, Penang.
Business Hours: 11:30am to 10pm. Closed on every Sunday.
Contact Number: 6014- 907 4123