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Maissal, Korean in Waukegan

Maissal, Korean in Waukegan
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  • Maissal, Korean in Waukegan

    Post #1 - July 5th, 2018, 9:49 pm
    Post #1 - July 5th, 2018, 9:49 pm Post #1 - July 5th, 2018, 9:49 pm
    Hi,

    Smack between two auto car lots is Maissal Fusion, "Mexican Fusion inspired with Korean Flavor." Until I read their website just now, I assumed their Fusion leaned toward Japanese rather than Mexican.

    Tuesday was first time I noticed this restaurant, though I vaguely recall a Mexican buffet was the last business there. From the layout, I have a sense this was once the showroom for an auto dealer. This hunch was affirmed from a search for businesses at this address.

    This is not a hole in the wall, they have made an effort to look hip stylish and lots of music. I had a similar impression of their style like when Chinatown went from dumpy Ma and Pa to hipster Hong Kong glossy style with pounding music.

    I stopped out of curiosity for the Korean Burrito. All are filled with pickle radish, spinach, scrambled eggs, carrot, crab stick, (rice), kampyo.* You have your choice of bulgogi, spicy chicken, tuna (cooked), cheese and tofu. What arrived could best be described as a sushi roll wrapped in sheet of nori rather than a flour-based burrito. It was served with a complimentary cup of Miso soup. This is the only menu item with anything remotely Mexican in name only. Mind you, the roll was fine, though it certainly was not anything remotely like the burrito I expected.

    Returned today with my Mother who ordered the entree box, including rice, salad, kimchi, shumai or gyoza. Choices of protein were bulgogi, pork bulgogi, chicken or salmon teriyaki and don or chicken katsu. My Mom opted for chicken teriyaki (it was dry, not a surprise with chicken breast). If I was in a Japanese restaurant, this would be a Bento box with some Korean touches. The salad had a ginger sesame dressing often seen in Japanese restaurants. Sweet potato was served tempura style, though with no dipping sauce. There was a Korean yellow pickled radish.

    I ordered the Gobdol Bibimbop served in a hot stone bowl, which included carrot, sprouts, squash, spinach, (rice) and a fried egg. Protein options were bulgogi, pork, chicken or tofu. When I order this next, I will ask for extra rice. Two little bowls filled with kimchi and a brocolli and noodle panchan.

    Complimentary bowls of miso soup were served and refilled once while we waited for our main course.

    We ordered shumai as an appetizer. We were told an order have five dumplings and pleasantly six arrived. These appeared to be made in-house. Two shumai came with Mom's bento box, which were fried. If I ordered the appetizer portion again, I would opt for fried over steamed. I simply liked the texture better.

    Other options on their small menu are ramen noodle soup, udon noodle soup and chicken wings with choice of soy-garlic, spicy-soy-garlic or half & half.

    This may be first Korean restaurant in Waukegan. Long ago in North Chicago, there was Sheridan Restaurant with Korean owners who served soul food, Greek, American, Mexican and Korean inspired dishes like Bull-Go-Ki on a hamburger bun served with mayo, tomatoes and green peppers. It was ahead of its time in 2006.

    Image

    I remember the place smelled of bleach.

    I do wonder if there is a connection between these two Korean restaurants.

    Maissal Fusion
    554 N. Green Bay Road
    Waukegan, IL 60085
    224-656-5669
    http://www.maissalfusion.com

    *Kampyo or kanpyo is a type of sushi roll.
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #2 - July 6th, 2018, 8:14 am
    Post #2 - July 6th, 2018, 8:14 am Post #2 - July 6th, 2018, 8:14 am
    If you do go, I recommend exiting US-41 at Grand Avenue going east.

    This is a zone of highly competitive gas stations: Speedway, Citgo, Thorntons and a Shell further west. Yesterday, Speedway was $3.09 and Thorntons was $2.75 for regular.

    There is bridge and road construction on Grand, traffic is impacted more when you wish to return to US-41. I suggest going south on Green Bay Road to either Washington or 120 to save time.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #3 - August 22nd, 2018, 7:27 am
    Post #3 - August 22nd, 2018, 7:27 am Post #3 - August 22nd, 2018, 7:27 am
    Hi,

    After our joy ride to see the condition of the Pyramid House, we stopped at Maissal for dinner. The menu has expanded to now include Poke and beef short ribs.

    Mom and I both ordered the entree boxes (Bento) with Bulgogi. Their Bulgogi had the pale brown color I used to achieve until schooled at H-Mart. The H-Mart ladies continue cooking until the marinade begins to reduce and caramelize.

    Immediately next door, in the same building, is Japanese sushi. It was closing at 8 pm last night, so I had no opportunity to check. It has suggestions on their window of Mexican fusion, too.

    Maissal does not deliver on Mexican fusion, either do it or don't, but teasing is not a good idea. I have had some great Korean-Mexican fusion tacos. Calling a rice roll a burrito is not what would be expected. It can be done very well, just do it or drop it.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast

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