A few weeks ago I was invited to have a quick dinner at a new restaurant, Gen Korean BBQ House, whose location at SM By the Bay, Mall of Asia complex, took the place of the Japanese buffet place, Banzai.
Turns out that the group of Marvin Agustin, which owned Banzai, is also behind the United States franchise that is Gen Korean.
The concept is you cook the food on a gas-flamed iron grill. Which is a hassle for someone like me whose cooking skill is limited to boiling an egg.
Good thing is that the wait staff can assist diners to do the grilling. Which is what I appreciated upon my return recently to check out Gen Korean’s new offer, “The Ultimate Gen Experience,” featuring 35 meat, seafood and veggie dishes, plus unlimited servings of select wine, beer, cocktails and nonalcoholic drinks—all for P1,888+.
Assisting me was server and cook Lionel San Diego, who patiently explained each dish he was putting on the grill. He knew how to do the steaks—all flown in from the United States—medium well. Cut into bite-size pieces, the meats burst with juicy flavor, their tastiness enhanced by special sauces.
San Diego also taught me that the proper way to grill the dishes is to put them on the middle and not on the sides, which are for warming.
I thoroughly enjoyed rolling Lolla Rossa lettuce with the meats, picking the seafood with chopsticks, and sipping cabernet sauvignon.
After about an hour, I consciously decided to eat at a slow pace and it felt good. However, after a while, I had to stop San Diego from serving the rest of the dishes, lest I start feeling satiated. He said I ate only about 15 dishes. Even then, I think the whole deal is a steal.
Gen Korean can accommodate 500 diners. An acoustic band performs from Wednesday to Sunday.
“The Ultimate Gen Experience” is available Monday to Friday, 5 p.m. onwards, and Saturday and Sunday, opening to closing.
Gen Korean BBQ House, SM By the Bay, Seaside Blvd. (across Conrad Manila), Mall of Asia complex, Pasay; tel. 5412767; follow on Facebook Gen Korean BBQ House; Instagram @genkbbq_ph
‘Four the Win: Summer Feels’
Gerry’s Grill has its own promo, by the way, dubbed “Four the Win: Summer Feels,” ongoing till June 30.
There are three set meal options, each costing P1,299 and good for four persons.
Set Meal 1: Sizzling Sisig, Beef Kare-Kare, Pancit Palabok, Platter of Rice, Halo-Halo Jr., Pitcher of Tropical Burst
Set Meal 2: Gerry’s Fried Chicken, Sinigang Na Hipon, Pork Barbecue, Platter of Rice, Halo-Halo Jr., Pitcher of Tropical Burst
Set Meal 3: Sizzling Sisig, Gerry’s Fried Chicken, Pinakbet, Platter of Rice, Halo-Halo Jr., Pitcher of Tropical Burst