Korean foodie craving

Posted on January 14, 2011


It’s been a while since my last post.  Things have been quite hectic last month when I have to finish my last days as a chemist and trade it for becoming a full-fledged foodie photographer.  It’s a big jump I know.  Quite bordering on insanity.  But I have a good feeling about this change.  I was even pushed to do this jump by a fortune cookie.  But that’s another post.  I promise I’d tell that story soon!  Right now is all about my Korean food cravings.

Living up at Toronto’s Yonge and Finch area, I’m right in the heart of one of Toronto’s Koreatown.  Yep, you read it right.  There are about three areas in Toronto where there is a heavy concentration of Korean restaurants.  The original one is located at downtown Toronto, west of the Annex neighborhood, about the Christie subway station.  The third one is located up north at Thornhill.  Since Korean and Filipino cuisines are quite similar in flavors and temperament, I gravitate to Korean restaurants very often.  What makes it more enjoyable is that I have a friend, Valerie, who is just as crazy for Korean cuisine at the same way I am.  This is how we found this restaurant I just have to blog about.

Buk Chang Dong Soon To Fu (691 Bloor Street West)  we came across by accident.  For all of you tofu-haters out there, don’t get scared with the To Fu words on the sign of their door.  This place has only 9 items on their menu, but it’s not just tofu that you find here.  Last year when Valerie and I had a craving for something Korean, we walked up and down Bloor Street, hopelessly trying to make an intelligent choice out of all the rows and rows of Korean restaurant by the Christie subway station.  We were looking up a menu of one restaurant when a man interrupted us and told us that if we want good Korean food, we better cross the street and go to this restaurant.

One look at the direction he was pointing, he seems right by his suggestion.  One good sign is that the place is brimming with people despite the utilitarian appearance of the tables and chairs.  There was almost no available table in sight and people patiently wait in line for their turn to get in.  Waiting was a drag but by the smell of the food and the look of the generous helping made us stay and have our fill.   Pasted on their wall are an exact copy of their menu.  Short and sweet, it lists 9 items.  While waiting in line, I decided that I am going for Bibimbap.    Sizzling on a really hot dolsot (stone pot) was a mix of slivers of beef and vegetables.  After a very satisfied tummy, I am now a big fan of Buk Chang Dong To Fu and frequent the place regularly.  Tasting yummy and priced very cheap (menu selections from $ 7 – 12 per combo), what’s not to love?

This most recent visit, I came armed with my new toy, a Canon S95.  I just have to shout-out-loud how good this place is.  I apologize for the mess that happened on my Dukbegi Bulgogi (marinated thin slices of beef and spring onions) and Dolsotbab (rice cooked on a very hot dolsot).  I cannot help but eat a piece right away before clicking away. Check out the aftermath.  This how much I love this place ;)

So if you ever find yourself at the extreme west of the Annex, drop in this place.  The owners know their cuisine so well.  Short list but every one of them executed authentically.   Wait patiently in line and it will surely be worth it!
Buk Chang Dong Soon Tofu on Urbanspoon