Where: 174 Bellair Street Kensington
When: Mon-Sat: 11.30am-10pm, Sun: 5pm-10pm
Contact: (03) 9372 2025
Gyoza ($6.90 for 8) & complimentary accompaniments
While everyone is losing their minds about the new Korean in Kensington (Frying Colours) it is easy to overlook the long-established Sori Café mere metres away on Bellair Street. And while I’m yet to enjoy what Frying Colours has to offer, I can happily vouch for Sori for all your Korean cuisine needs.
Not only is the food great there but the service is a warm hug and big bowl of piping-hot old-fashioned comfort.
Literally speaking now, Sori is a wonderful winter warmer with juicy pan-fried gyoza, sizzling hot plates and warm sake. Hedonists can indulge their bellies with fried chicken or pork options while those seeking something fresh and vibrant can enjoy a hotpot with at least three more colours in it than the fried chicken plate. Japanese fiends will be happy with the fresh sushi and sashimi options too.
Bibimbab with beef ($15.50)
On our visit we enjoyed the Bibimbab; a rice hotpot of egg, mushrooms, pickled carrot, beanshoots and beef which we ordered with the chilli sauce option, although I’d be so bold as to bring on the flavour sensation of chilli AND soy next time. This delightful sizzling dish is served following a creamy serve of miso soup which wasn’t overly yeasty and salty as they can sometimes be.
We also ate up the Tonkatsu; a crumbed and fried pork loin with a sweet dark ‘tonkatsu’ sauce and salad ($16.50). Yes, it was as good as you’d imagine, and no, it wasn’t oily or sickly by the last bite either. The salad however; a glorified garnish, was not nearly as impressive as its crunchy neighbouring pork morsels.
Tonkatsu, deep fried crumbed pork loin with tonkatsu sauce and salad ($16.50)
There were extra little details which made our visit pleasurable, like the complimentary snacks (a bowl of delicious moreish crispy pieces which are yet to be indentified) and plate of kimchi, omelette and green beans as well as the little chocolate pancakes which followed our meals. The waiter was also fantastically adept at ensuring allergies were known and even organising custom gyoza numbers rather than ordering only plates of eight at a time. At the end our group order was even tallied up for each individual so that we didn’t have work it out ourselves.
I can’t wait to visit again, and next time I’ll even bring the baby.
Complimentary chocolate pancake