Famous for 8 different flavours for their marinated pork belly; original, wine, ginseng, garlic, herb, curry, miso paste and red pepper paste, 8 Korean bbq debuted in LA and later opened 2 stores in Singapore in 2013
Since I visited the Clarke Quay outlet before, I decided to drop by their Shaw Center outlet this round. Like the one at Clarke Quay, the entire restaurant is decorated in an Industrial Chic style with concrete walls, brick walls and black metal tables and furnishings. Compared to the one at Clarke Quay, the Shaw Center outlet is much smaller with tables for only 10 to 20 groups of diners at any given time
One of the main differentiating points of the restaurant from other barbeque restaurants is the quality of their meat. Serving Mangalica pork belly from a Hungarian breed of domestic pig which is raised on free-roaming farms, the meat is considered the best-tasting pork due to intra-muscular fat and richer meat taste. For beef lovers, they also offer the Argentinian Grass Fed, USDA Prime and Japanese Wagyu.
Something I really liked about the restaurant is the service of the staff who helps every table grill their food so you can concentrate on your gathering with your friends or family. There will be customers who wish to grill their food themselves, you can just tell the staff and they will leave you alone. On top of the grill, they also pile on a mountain of kimchi and seasoned bean sprouts which is wonderful when grilled with a smokey flavour.
The pork had perfect marbling and was sizzling with so much fragrance on the grill. The meat was a nice cut and when grilled perfectly, the meat has crispy fats and tender meat. When paired with the grilled kimchi and bean sprouts, it made a wonderful lettuce wrap. Personally, for me, the 8 flavours did not really come through so I could not tell the difference although the ginseng one does have a light ginseng flavour
We also ordered a serving of their giant squid which was grilled on top of baking paper to prevent the splattering as a slab of butter was added when grilling the squid. The squid was very well grilled and cut out into bite size for easy consumption. As the squid was grilled in butter, there is a nice creamy fragrance combined with the charred flavours from the grill and the best part is the squid was still moist and soft in bite
We also ordered their seafood pancake which was nicely cut into 8 pieces. Served with a savoury vinegarette sauce, the pancake has a slightly crispy crust and soft insides. The flavours were generally ok but not one of the best ones I have tried before
Last but not least, we also ordered the army stew which came served with ham, instant noodles and vegetables. We asked the kitchen and found out the stew broth has beef seasoning added so I did not get to try the army stew. The staff did mention that if you informed them beforehand, they could refrain from including the beef seasoning. My friends did mention that the stew was pretty general and nothing too outstanding
Overall, I do like the service of the staff and also the quality of the meat really made a difference in the taste of the meat, I liked the grilled kimchi and bean sprouts as well. The restaurant is quite popular with customers and it is recommended to do an advance booking beforehand
Address: 1 Scotts Rd, #04 – 20 / 21, Singapore 228208
Operating hours: 11.30 am to 2.30 pm and 5.30 pm to 10 pm ( 11.30 am to 10 pm for Sat and Sun)