Monday, September 8, 2014

Damso Modern Korean Cuisine

Damso Modern Korean Cuisine on Urbanspoon I was lured to try this place by talk of good Korean tacos, but Vanbrosia rated the tacos only an average 2/3, so we went with other stuff (but did try at least one taco).

This smallish restaurant *does* take reservations, but definitely please be on time because on the Friday night we were there, two really busy waitresses were scrambling to handle the constant stream of customers. If your party is just two persons, you may be able to squeeze in, but be prepared for a wait.

Of the items I got a proper taste of, only the one taco was really decent (and hopefully not a fluke). The rest were not badly done, but in between why-did-I-bother-to-order-this and mediocre. Anything that sounds spicy probably isn't very spicy. More like toned-down-for-North-Americans spicy.

DFC (Damso Fried Chicken drumsticks; $12.99)
  • Eight drumsticks, slathered with a bright red sauce that wasn't super-spicy, so don't worry too much.
  • For some reason, many drumsticks had broken bones, typically at the knee.
  • Bit of a waste of time to order this. Chicken is chicken here, with little to recommend here. No fun-deep-fried-crunch or anything.
Kimchi Beef Bulgogi Burger ($10.99, picked daikon, onion, yam fries with spicy mayo on the side)
  • My friend was dead certain that they used an inferior Wonderbread bun, which resulted in a soggy bottom half of bun and one that crumbled easily.
  • Rather very tender beef is the only thing to really recommend here.
  • Yam fries were nice and crispy and fresh, but glazed with a strange sauce which my Korean friend was certain was soy sauce plus some korean spice. In any case, it had a somewhat off-putting sickly sweetness. Definitely use the spicy mayo to drown that out if you don't like it.
  • As far as price for portion, $10.99 is actually pretty decent here as you get a goodly amount of beef plus yam fries. Elsewhere, a mediocre and boring beef patty burger might be $12.
  • They can cut it in half for you if you want to share, but this just smushes some of the filling out, making it a very fall-apart burger.
Korean Beef Taco ($1.99, hand-stretched tortilla, beef belly, chili sauce)
  • This was actually really good. Slight burnt-by-the-grill flavour really enhanced the tender beef.
  • Looks like they didn't over-toast the tortillas since Vanbrosia was there last, so no worry here of them breaking.
  • At $1.99, you are probably better off getting five of these rather than one Bulgogi Burger.
Yuja Snowman Sorbet ($5.99)
  • Fun and refreshing palate-cleansing way to end a meal. Price is not bad considering they have to compose it into a standing snowman for you.
  • As far as sorbets go, taste is intense but texture a bit too firm and ice-like.
In addition to being short-staffed, at full capacity they did not have enough menus to go around (!) and the kitchen couldn't really keep up. One person in our party of five got their Korean Miso Stew very early. No sign of rice till later, and then the other orders started to show up. But it was quite a long wait. And then there was the one person who didn't get her order till very late, and it looked like they forgot to light the flame under her not-at-all-spicy Spicy Pork Bulgogi. Plus they forgot my drink order, but at least didn't charge me for it.

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