LTH Home

BBQ Garden, Niles

BBQ Garden, Niles
  • Forum HomePost Reply BackTop
  • BBQ Garden, Niles

    Post #1 - January 14th, 2019, 4:50 pm
    Post #1 - January 14th, 2019, 4:50 pm Post #1 - January 14th, 2019, 4:50 pm
    I led a group of 18 people to BBQ Garden in Niles Sunday, for "all you can eat". As of 5 PM Monday I am still not hungry (though I always skip breakfast). I will make minimal comments on the food as this was my first Korean BBQ since (I think) they were different, as in more similar to Japanese steak houses, maybe 17 years ago. Anyway, I don't remember that experience. I went to San Soo Kab San about 10 days ago, but only ordered soup.

    BBQ Garden
    9020 W Golf
    Niles, IL

    Might come back and comment on food more after the lth north lunch later this month. In general, everybody liked the food, some clusters (we had 6 grills) pigged out on bulgogi, I went for the sirloin, seafood and even tried calves intestines. Shrimp were good sized. I thought food was pretty much minimally seasoned, I'm used to bulgogi having more seasonings including a lot of ginger, so didn't eat much of it.

    They have three AYCE selections, plus a limited $20 at lunch only. Basic level, IIRC, $25 had less beef than what we chose at $30. Premium at $37 (IIRC) only seemed to have two more items, rib eye steak and korean version of something on mid price list.

    Banchan was a pale subset of San Soo Kab san, though the salad with ginger dressing was a nice starter. Bottom right/center was american style potato salad, seemed out of place.

    P1130291.jpg banchan



    The included buffet had fried chicken, something else fried (fish?), something like spam on a stick, two kinds of soup, several kinds of maki, raw vegetables (I put some mushrooms on the grill), rice noodles with stuff (forget the name), squash slices (skin tender enough to eat with flesh), fruit, and more. Sushi pictures accidentally included one of my grill photos:

    P1130292-sushi.jpg sushi


    Grill:

    P1130292.jpg sirloin, bulgogi, ? kalbi


    Overall comments: happy with service, grill changed frequently. When we obviously didn't know what we were doing, they showed us how to cut up the pieces of meat. Water refilled better than most restaurants (I note that yelp comments on the other nearby korean BBQ restaurants complained of miserable service, though I suspect that may all be sabotage by competitors. At least my past experience is where there are two restaurants of the same type near each other, both have complaints of bad service.

    Possible issue: when the bill came, it was for 19 people. I asked and the manager immediately apologized, said the server had told him she entered the wrong number but he forgot to correct it.
    Last edited by diversedancer on January 15th, 2019, 5:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    --Carey aka underdog
  • Post #2 - January 15th, 2019, 10:55 am
    Post #2 - January 15th, 2019, 10:55 am Post #2 - January 15th, 2019, 10:55 am
    diversedancer wrote:Might come back and comment on food more after the lth north lunch later this month.

    Why not finish your comments now? Each visit is like a snapshot of the establishment at that moment. Visit another day and it may be very same or quite different.

    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 - January 15th, 2019, 6:11 pm
    Post #3 - January 15th, 2019, 6:11 pm Post #3 - January 15th, 2019, 6:11 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:
    diversedancer wrote:Might come back and comment on food more after the lth north lunch later this month.

    Why not finish your comments now? ...
    Regards,
    Cathy2


    Can't say more due to ignorance. Like "meat was exceptionally tender"..."or tough". I did say more than I planned as of when I penned "may come back ...". For instance, I did comment on the banchan being less than san soo sab kan, and that the service was "good" in absolute perspective (e.g. water and changing grills), but not "better" or "worse" than alternatives. Might have nothing more to say. I actually thought I said quite a bit. I did say the others liked it, and I thought the food was less seasoned than prior experience with Korean food, at non-BBQ restaurants. I can't (well I could, but it would be meaningless) "it was the best Bulgogi I ever had at a K BBQ restaurant", or "I will go back here instead of where I used to go".
    --Carey aka underdog
  • Post #4 - January 15th, 2019, 7:56 pm
    Post #4 - January 15th, 2019, 7:56 pm Post #4 - January 15th, 2019, 7:56 pm
    DD -- bulgogi got dumped in large quantities on the other two burners at the table, but not on yours. The meat on your burner other than sirloin was brisket, which they brought out on a great platter. Don't know if the bulgogi made it down to your end of the table, but it was quite tasty -- and the dish that reflects your memory of ginger and garlic. As for the potato salad, that is actually a common inclusion in banchan, though this one could have used a bit more salt. And the other fried item -- the not chicken -- was tonkatsu, Japanese-style fried pork cutlet.

    A little crazy figuring out the ordering, until we figured out that you were just leaving it up to us. And then I think everyone had a good time trying stuff out. Sorry you had not been made aware that dinner was cook your own -- but that's pretty standard in places that focus on Korean BBQ.

    I think the fact that the place, which is quite spacious, was absolutely packed, almost entirely with Asians, suggests that it at least tastes enough like home to make them happy. Of course, that doesn't prove that it's a great place -- but the quality of the meat was good -- especially the sirloin and the bulgogi -- and the service was great.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #5 - January 16th, 2019, 12:42 am
    Post #5 - January 16th, 2019, 12:42 am Post #5 - January 16th, 2019, 12:42 am
    Thank you Cynthia, nice to have a comment from somebody with prior experience to compare our restaurant with.

    We had at least 2 orders of bulgogi at my burner (first round, last round and I think one or two mid meal). Sorry, a tiny fraction of the seasoning level I am used to. Seems I last made it before I was keeping a record of recipes on my computer (probably from a printed book), but here is an approximate list of ingredients from a recipe I downloaded in 2017 but apparently never used, that looks familiar to what I used to make, which was similar to what I used to get in a restaurant (I would have used more ginger, small to medium onion and definitely added sesame seeds)

    6 small garlic cloves, minced
    1/4 cup soy sauce
    2 tablespoons sugar
    2 tablespoons sesame oil
    2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
    2 teaspoons ginger, freshly grated
    1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
    1 pound beef, thinly sliced crosswise
    1 large onion, cut into 12 wedges
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    Toasted sesame seeds

    I noticed the bulgogi end of the table barely touched their banchan, we pretty much polished ours off.

    And I have no clue how the other table and their three burners fared....

    We had relatively more sirloin, partly because I snagged over a quarter of it raw, and a bit more rare. Yes, I know the warnings against raw beef, but some sources say cooked anything less than "shoe leather" is no better than raw for killing potentially bad bacteria...and the cave man in me loves it raw.

    Now I remember guessing the other buffet fried item was pork at the time, but forgot when posting. What was the dish with rice noodles, veggies and meat? Somebody said the name, but I forgot.

    When I went in to ask and plan, they were quite clear that the food was cooked in back and brought out for the AYCE. But I went in mid day, so that probably only applies to lunch and maybe only to the $20 lunch special.

    What I had attempted to do was place an initial order for each burner, of the basic beef items, then let everybody reorder what they liked, or choose other specialty items that maybe not everybody would want. But I may have failed to communicate that to the servers, and, I guess, wasn't clear enough with the guests. If I did all the ordering, I would have picked a bunch of the oddball items that those at some burners would have not touched. And if I had to do all the ordering, I would not have had time to eat anything myself, maybe a good thing in disguise, though my weight was NOT up the next two days after.

    Do you know what the buffet item "flat processed meat folded back and forth on a skewer" that I thought resembled spam was? Or the bowls to which we added broth to make "fresh" soup? There seemed to be two broth selections, one with jalapeno like peppers in it (but still mild to my taste).

    Late in the evening, I noticed that one of the other tables had one grill that was a very open mesh (that I could see through clearly) instead of solid steel with slots we had. I wonder if they just ran out of the standard ones, if it was a special request item, or if they had some special dish that required that.
    --Carey aka underdog
  • Post #6 - January 23rd, 2019, 2:27 pm
    Post #6 - January 23rd, 2019, 2:27 pm Post #6 - January 23rd, 2019, 2:27 pm
    Been to my second Korean BBQ. I think this is a link to it:

    viewtopic.php?f=19&t=44791&p=539877#p539877

    Would go back to either, if I had a choice, I'd take BBQ Garden at $40 to Kogii Kogli at $29. (or Kogii Kogli at $26-27 without the kim chee pancake)
    --Carey aka underdog

Contact

About

Team

Advertize

Close

Chat

Articles

Guide

Events

more