Friday, February 8, 2013

Seoul Garden @ Ngee Ann City

As of this writing, it's already the beginning of February. Oh time flies extremely fast. It was just a month ago when I celebrated the New Year's countdown with my family. Anyway, since it's a new month, that means a new set of blog posts will be available on Frenzeelo. The first article for this month is about Seoul Garden, a Halal buffet restaurant that sells a wide variety of Korean cuisine along with sushi and marinated meats. This is the second buffet restaurant that I have visited that requires me to cook the food myself. The outlet that I am going to talk about will be the one located at Ngee Ann City, a shopping mall right in the heart of Orchard Road. If you don't live near Orchard Road, there are plenty of Seoul Garden outlets located in the heartlands of Singapore. Scroll down to read more about my experience at Seoul Garden Ngee Ann City.

Preparing The Ingredients

Sorry for not showing you the price list. The price list board was situated behind the cashier counter so it was difficult for me to take a picture of it and the manager's blocking the way. If you want to know the full price list, you'll be glad to know that the price list is available on their website which you can check out through the link found at the bottom of this article. After paying for the Dinner price, it's time to take the food. The picture above shows me preparing the soup base for the hotpot. Seoul Garden has all kinds of food. Their most popular items are the raw marinated meats. You've got several choices including beef and chicken and each of them has a different marinade and taste. You can get the spicy one, the honey one or whatever that suits your taste. They also have a wide variedy of cooked food too along with drinks and desserts.

Samosas, Fishballs and Fishcakes (I think)

Delicious Deep Fried Snacks

These deep fried snacks are a great way to start a heavy meal. They can even be regarded as appetisers. I got myself some fishballs, some small samosas and I'm not entirely sure what the brown thing was but I have a feeling that it's some kind of fish cake. All these snacks are not really that special though. They look cute and all but I am guessing that they're store bought deep fried snacks because they look and taste like them. However, they are good snacks to munch on before eating a heavy meal.

Seoul Garden Sushi (Available at certain outlets)

Tasty Tasty Sushi

Although Seoul Garden is mainly a Korean buffet restaurant, they do serve a wide variety of sushi because sushi is quite popular among buffet restaurants in Singapore. Or at least that's what I think it is. Anyway, they taste great. I tried the one with the corn on top as you can see and they taste freshly made and just plain delicious. I really like it. For the rest, they are okay somewhat like Shabu Sushi's sushi which I talked about here but it's slightly better. Oh and the Wasabi and the sauce, I did not dare to try them so I can't really talk about them.

Seoul Garden Spaghetti

Delicious Spaghetti

Apart from raw marinated meats, there was also a good selection of cooked food too like this spaghetti pictured above. Sure, I know the spaghetti's presentation does not really look that appetising because I scooped it up with the tongs and served it on the yellow plate myself. The spaghetti tasted like as if it was tossed around with some spaghetti tomato sauce. It tasted great but it lacked flavour but I could taste the tomato sauce a little bit. I didn't get myself a lot of the spaghetti because I wanted to have enough room for the marinated pieces of chicken and beef. If you're a pasta lover, you should get this.

Fried Rice and Tofu Mix (I think)
Fried Rice and Tofu Mix

Now I can't really remember the full names of these dishes but what I do know is that what I scooped up were some fried rice and some tofu mix and I served it all in one plate. The fried rice was delicious. In fact, the taste isn't like regular fried rice. It's more like fried rice mixed with some soya sauce and mixed with some sausages. It was warm and tasty. For the tofu mix, it's okay because it's nothing too special plus I like the fried rice much better.

Noodles, Sausages, Fish Balls and Crabsticks

Ingrediends for the Soup Base

Just like Shabu Sushi which I talked about previously, there's also a hotpot but at Seoul Garden, it's located right in the middle of the grill which you can see in the second picture of this article. I got some ingredients from the buffet table to add in the hotpot. I got some noodles, some crabsticks, sausages, fish balls and a slightly modified version of the fish balls whose names I do not know. Sure, these ingredients can be found in the supermarket but where's the fun in that? It's more fun when you take all these and cook it yourself with the hotpot provided at Seoul Garden. After cooking all of these with the Soup Base, they all taste good but it's even better if you eat it with the Soup Base.

Seoul Garden's Raw Marinated Meats

Lovely Marinated Meats

Now, I'm going to talk about the star of the show or should I say, STARS... of the show because there's more than one kind of marinated meat in this plate shown right above. At the buffet, there are plenty of choices for marinated meats. You got all kinds of meat (except for pork because it's a Halal food establishment) and also some seafood. I got a variety of raw meats which includes spicy chicken, sweet beef, zesty prawns and so on and so forth. I got so much marinated meats, I can't even remember all of them. If you want to try all of them, you can but don't take too much of it because you need to leave some room for your stomach for desserts and other food that you want to eat.

Cooking the Food, the Fun Way.

After getting all that, it's time to cook the meats on the grill and boil the hotpot stuff into the hotpot. Using the grill and hotpot is easy even if you're the type of person who doesn't cook. There are so many staff members that can help you and when you turn on the fire, all you have to do is to place the raw food into the grill and hotpot respectively. Make sure that you use separate utensils for raw and cooked food and only remove the meats if they look cooked. If it's still reddish, then it's not ready yet. If you're a newbie, these tips will be handy to you when eating at Seoul Garden. It's too bad that I didn't take photos of the cooked food. All I can say is that, the beef tastes delicious and sweet and succulent while the spicy chicken was spicy and succulent. Thumbs up to Seoul Garden for the marinated meats because they were delicious. They're not Steak-delicious, but they're delicious for my taste. For the prawns, I can't comment on them because my sister ate them and I'm not really a big fan of grilled prawns. I'm more of a breaded prawn kind of guy. Anyway, cooking food yourself is really a fun activity.

My Ice Cream Sundae Masterpiece

Time for Ice Cream

Unlike some buffet restaurants that only serve ice cream bars as desserts, Seoul Garden's buffet table has all kinds of ice cream. I'm not talking about ice cream bars with a wide variety of flavours, I'm talking about ice cream in which you can scoop up yourself and decorate them to your own liking. Above, is my own masterpiece which was made of scoops of sweet corn ice cream, chocolate ice cream and strawberry ice cream topped off with some interesting toppings. The toppings that are included in my masterpiece include a chocolate Swiss Roll, some Koko Krunch and some chopped nuts. Sure, it's not as fancy as Swensen's ice cream sundaes but hey, for my first try, it ain't bad, right? Oh and don't expect the ice cream to have too many flavours but at least the common flavours are present like Vanilla, Chocolate and Strawberry. My ice cream masterpiece was so extremely tasty. Not as good as Swensen's but I like it perfectly. If you have a sweet tooth, unleash your creativity and create yourself an ice cream sundae of your own. It's an All-You-Can-Eat-Buffet anyway, right? Make good use of it.

My Ice Kacang Masterpiece

Yummy Fruity Icy Dessert

If you have a sweet tooth and you don't like ice cream, (seriously, who doesn't love ice cream?) you can also make yourself Ice Kacang. If you don't know what's that, it's basically ice shavings topped off with different flavours of syrup and other toppings like jellies and red beans. The one above is slightly shorter than a typical Ice Kacang but it's more delicious than a typical Ice Kacang because of the variety of toppings mixed into the dessert. I added some extra jellies and fruits like the Honey Dew. It's all delicious and sweet and it's a great alternative for those who don't really want to eat ice cream. Also, don't forget to follow the instructions and put the ice first before you add on the syrup.

In A Nutshell

In a nutshell, my experience at Seoul Garden Ngee Ann City was a great one. The prices are quite steep especially if it's during Dinner. However, if you want to eat here without spending too much, go for lunch instead. You get to eat whatever you want, cook your own food, create your own ice cream sundae and create your own Ice Kacang. Seoul Garden is a great place for a romantic dinner or a family gathering because it involves some hands on activities which can be fun. I highly recommend you to come here and try it for yourself. Seoul Garden is located in a variety of locations around Singapore which includes the heartlands and in the city area. There's also Seoul Garden HotPot at HarbourFront Centre if you want to try their wide range of Korean food. Whatever it is, I certainly would like to come here again but I'll make sure that I reach a little earlier so that I don't have to pay so much.

Seoul Garden is HALAL certified

Getting Here

Bus service available: 14e, 124, 128, 143, 162, 162M, 167, 171, 190, 700, 700A, NR1, NR2, NR3, NR5 (Bus stop along Orchard Turn opp. Ngee Ann City)

Nearest MRT Station: NS22 Orchard MRT Station (North South Line)


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