The Philippines has been invaded by the Koreans in the last few years. This is not an invasion of our territory in a bad way but one that we’re pleased about. In fact, Koreans were the top tourists in the Philippines last year. Over 100,000 of them already are residing in our plains permanently.

In a nutshell, their cultural references are being shared to us little by little. And we are accepting and embracing them now as part of our mixed culture. Joining many others, my family and I are also happily riding the Korean wave. There are the likes of Korean makeup and beauty products, Korean hairstyle, Korean fashion, Koreanovelas, K-pop and Korean food that we’re all fond of. We have not eaten Korean food for a long time (over a year); so I felt obligated to bring my family to a Korean restaurant last Sunday.

Specifically, we went to the branch of Kogi Bulgogi in Lucky Chinatown Mall in Binondo. This maybe is the nearest Korean restaurant from our house—and the first outlet of Kogi Bulgogi in Binondo area. I have tried eating in their branch in Eastwood City, Libis with my IBM colleagues back in 2010, and it was a great!

I was not writing reviews back then though. Now would be the perfect time to do a proper review thus.

Review of Kogi Bulgogi (Lucky Chinatown Mall, Binondo)

Ambiance: ★★★★★

The interior was designed with a very modern yet zen ambiance—spacious seats inside and outside, sufficient white spotlights for lighting, artificial green plants, and peaceful background. It gave us a unique gourmet experience.

Service: ★★★★★

This branch of Kogi Bulgogi is crewed by more than six sharply-dressed friendly Filipino servers who greeted us ann-yeong ha-se-yo 안녕하세요 and kam-sa-hamnida 감사합니다 before and after meals. In summary, customer service was A++++!

They explained the menu to us plus their recommendations. They were also patient when we could not decide on what to order. We didn’t have to wait for our food for several minutes, considering that cooking Korean food can take a longer time for the many different side dishes that go with it. They stopped by once in a while to check up on us. They gave us four cups of tea and four glasses of chilled water. They were super fast in refilling the side dishes (twice at max).

Staff members deserve a special pat on the back for such exquisite team service. They did all these excellent tasks without charge!

Food: ★★★★★

Before entering their premise, we had to conduct three checks. First, as always, was if they have vegetarian-friendly dishes. Second was if viands are budget-friendly. Thirdly, they must have good-looking pictures; else, my mom would not bother to order based on text-based descriptions only. :)) Three markers passed and so we continued placing our orders.

Upon gazing at their menu, I was spoilt for choice. After several minutes spent for decision-making, we ordered: Spinach & Golden Mushrooms (buttered spinach with golden mushrooms), Nude Kimbap (8 pieces of seaweed rice roll with meat, egg and vegetables), Salmon Bibimbap (smoked salmon with raw egg and vegetables–carrots, radish, cabbage and bean sprouts in claypot), Bulgogi Dub Bap (beef bulgogi marinated with sweet sauce) and Chicken Ssambap (rice with bite size chicken and lettuce).

Complimentary Korean side dishes or the banchan consisted of two sets of young corn, okra with tomato catsup, kimchi (fermented spicy radish), braised Korean tofu, glazed sweet potatoes, seasoned bean sprouts (kongnamul), stir-fried dried and sweetened anchovies (myulchi bokum) and a mix of diced vegetables with cream salad.

Sorry, this time I would just go straight to the point and describe the food in three words: YUM YUM YUM! At the end of the meal, we were way too full, super satisfied.

Price for Value: ★★★★★

Damage to the budget was PHp 1058 for those five different enticing Korean dishes in huge servings. Individual prices were very reasonable and all worth it! Everything is highly recommended. If you’re craving for Korean food, just come here and don’t think twice. You can thank me later! 🙂

Kogi Bulgogi
3F Lucky Chinatown Mall, Reina Regente St. corner Dela Reina St., Binondo, Manila
For inquiries, call (02) 755-3084

Other branch:
2/F Eastwood Mall, E Rodriguez Jr Ave Bagumbayan, Quezon City
For inquiries, call (02) 470-6884 to 85


Health and technology freak. Food and lifestyle blogger with a large appetite for food and travel.

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10 Responses

    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Hi Tin! I’m not sure about that. What I’ve seen was the staff cooking the meat in front of the dining guests through a standalone/portable cooker. 😀


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