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Old 15-12-2011, 10:22 PM   #1
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Korean Food @ Joo Mak, Beauty World

Lunch @ Joo Mak

Nested at a corner of level 4 at Beauty World, Joo Mak is a gem of a restaurant serving simple but delicious Korean fare.


Despite hearing that they served good fried chicken, I was initially a bit apprehensive after seeing the bare interior and short menu consisting of 3 pieces of laminated paper.


3 other tables of Korean diners restored my confidence somewhat. My reasoning goes like this - If Koreans are eating here, then the Korean food must be pretty good, or so I hope.

1 side of the restaurant is decorated with a mural of a feudal Korean meal. The other walls have posters of K-pop stars and handwritten notes of diners, hopefully happy diners, pasted on them.




We were first served some banchan (small dishes of appetisers). Decent, nothing outstanding. They served to assuage our hunger somewhat while we waited for our main dishes.



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Old 15-12-2011, 10:22 PM   #2
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Spicy Korean rice cake ($10)
The sauce was spicy and slightly sweet, while the rice cake had a chewy texture and nice taste.



My dining partner, who went to Korea before, said that the dish was very similar to what she ate in Korea, so its pretty authentic.
She liked it. Even though I am not a fan of rice cakes, I have to admit that it tasted pretty good. The sauce was nicely spiced and the rice cake was pleasant to chew. However, at $10, I felt they could have been more generously with the ingredients, seeing that the dish just consisted of the rice cakes, cabbage and fish cake.


Grilled Saba ($10)
It might look dry, but trust me, it is anything but dry ... the fish was big enough and so skillfully grilled such that the inside remained delightfully juicy, while the outside was slightly charred and crispy. The fish was very fresh, and you can savour that rich and oily taste of the Saba.



It’s a pity that each serving is only half a fish. I can certainly wolf down the entire fish and probably another two or three. If there is a dish which I will go back for, it is this grilled Saba. In fact, I’m still thinking fondly of it while penning this.


Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup ($20)
The soup arrived pipingly hot, just the way I liked it.
I found the soup above average. It was flavourful and you could actually taste the chicken, unlike the ginseng chicken soup in a lot of other places the soup was bland.



Salt was also given in a separate dish, so you can salt the soup to your preference. My partner found the soup sweet and flavourful enough as it was, whereas I added a pinch of salt to mine and felt it enhanced the taste.

The chicken was also quite tender, though a tad bland, which was understandable given that much of the chicken’s essence had seeped into the soup.
Here is a photo showing a date, glutinous rice, garlic and ginseng that were stuffed into the chicken.



My only complaint about the soup was that you cannot smell or taste the ginseng in the soup. Adding more ginseng to the soup, but not so much that it makes the soup bitter, will make it that much better.



In a nutshell, it was a nice meal with good food and company. So if you are in the mood for some korean food, do pay them a visit. I enjoyed myself and I trust that you will too.

Nice food and they do not GST or service charge. Who says good things only come in pairs?


PS: Do not forget to pick up some traditional Chinese kueh kueh from the stall located at the same level in the food court.

Joo Mak Korean Restaurant
144 Upper Bukit Timah Road, 04-01 Beauty World Centre, Singapore 588177
Tel : 6466 7871
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Old 15-12-2011, 10:59 PM   #3
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oh did u use the Groupon voucher??

i went there like a few months back and ordered some huge kimchi stew that has meat, vege, noodles and lots of other stuff..

just nice for 2 hungry people..

totally love it until i saw the Groupon voucher and bought it without hesitation
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Old 15-12-2011, 11:14 PM   #4
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Yea. I saw the groupon deal so i gave it a try. Glad i did, else seeing the facade of the place, i dun think i will step in. If sell again, i will grab it too ... more than one too

Oooo, the stew sounds nice, esp these days keep raining ... cold cold ... was it served on a portable stove? When i was there, the other tables had it.

You tried their fried chicken? i read on a review tats its good.


My next visit, i must give it a try as well as other meat dishes. The previous time i went with someone who only eats chicken n fish, meat wise. Lucky their saba was so good. In fact, she's asking me to go eat the saba again but i wanna go eat their pork belly and/or ribs ... so cannot go with her
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Old 15-12-2011, 11:27 PM   #5
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Here is a better n more indepth review of the place. I think it featured the kimchi stew which you're referring to. Wah, it sounds really good. Now i'm definitely giving it a try Sigh, need more vouchers!!!

http://wonderrrgirl.wordpress.com/20...an-restaurant/
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Old 15-12-2011, 11:57 PM   #6
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yaya the stew was served in some big pot on a portable stove that uses the gas canisters..

u have to try that!! especially the cold weather now..

haha i read the blog before i went for the first time and was kinda put off by it after looking at the octopus inside the stew.. looks very infant.. luckily i ordered the pork when i was there..

oh heard the fried chicken was good too but the stew too much already, cannot even eat more stuff..

oh and i added rice cakes and more ham into the stew
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Old 16-12-2011, 12:31 AM   #7
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yaya the stew was served in some big pot on a portable stove that uses the gas canisters..

u have to try that!! especially the cold weather now..

haha i read the blog before i went for the first time and was kinda put off by it after looking at the octopus inside the stew.. looks very infant.. luckily i ordered the pork when i was there..

oh heard the fried chicken was good too but the stew too much already, cannot even eat more stuff..

oh and i added rice cakes and more ham into the stew
Yea, the octopus looks errr ... very raw

You eat it raw while its still wiggling or after its cooked? I see those korean shows on tv, they always eat it while its still alive. Put in mouth can still see a few tentacles spouting out from the mouth n wiggling here n there. Gross!

The stew you tried is the Octopus & bulgogi stew or kimchi stew?
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Old 16-12-2011, 01:27 AM   #8
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Yea, the octopus looks errr ... very raw

You eat it raw while its still wiggling or after its cooked? I see those korean shows on tv, they always eat it while its still alive. Put in mouth can still see a few tentacles spouting out from the mouth n wiggling here n there. Gross!

The stew you tried is the Octopus & bulgogi stew or kimchi stew?
i didnt order the octopus, not so adverturous

haha.. i ordered the budae jjigae.. there is like pork, hotdogs, kimchi, noodles, vege, ham inside..

really worth it.. eat until shiok.. i have yet to use my groupon so i guess i will go back and order the same thing again.. i just cant stomach down the live octopus

oh when i was there most of the patrons were korean so i guess the food is authentic in a way.. after i paid the shop owner even gave me a korean face mask.. think its some complementary.. do u have it too?
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Old 16-12-2011, 09:19 AM   #9
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haha.. i ordered the budae jjigae.. there is like pork, hotdogs, kimchi, noodles, vege, ham inside..

really worth it.. eat until shiok.. i have yet to use my groupon so i guess i will go back and order the same thing again.. i just cant stomach down the live octopus

oh when i was there most of the patrons were korean so i guess the food is authentic in a way.. after i paid the shop owner even gave me a korean face mask.. think its some complementary.. do u have it too?
Ah, you ordered the army stew. The one with the maggi mee Wonder if the soup base is the same as the kimchi one.

I guess they will eat the octopus after cooking bah. But with koreans, you never know

Hmmm, no face mask for me. Maybe the owner thinks my face beyond help liao
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Old 16-12-2011, 04:49 PM   #10
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most of the food rest. in korea look like this..
will try the food very soon...
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Old 16-12-2011, 05:10 PM   #11
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ok gonna try when i go back to sg...
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Old 21-03-2012, 10:24 PM   #12
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you are lucky if you managed to use your groupon vouchers for Joo mak restaurant... Below is my horror story of my Groupon encounter for Joo Mak restaurant...

Bought $80 worth of Groupon vouchers for Joo Mak restaurant (expiry in may/june). When I was about to print my Groupon vouchers (sometime in January), to my horror, the voucher was classified as "used". I was puzzled and called up Groupon, and was told that there was some technical error, and was advised to go ahead to print the Groupon.

After printing, tried to make reservation but ALL the timing I wanted were fully booked. (I work around Bukit Timah area so I decided to go there to peep at the restaurant on one of the days I tried to reserve to see if they were really fully booked... but actually they were not...). After that, I left the Groupons aside since there's still a long time before it expires.

Two weeks ago (early-mid march), I tried to make reservation again, TO MY HORROR, the Korean lady owner claimed that she DOES NOT ACCEPT ANYMORE GROUPON in her restaurant from now onwards. I tried to explain to her that the voucher is still valid but she started complaining that Groupon owed her money etc and insisted that NO MORE GROUPON FOR ALL MEALS.

Desperate, I called up Groupon and explained the problem, but apparently the person who replied seemed ignorant about this matter (didn't anyone complain about this matter before?) After conveying the problem I encountered in an email, mentioning that I have problem making reservation as the restaurant doesn't accept Groupons I purchased, he made such a stupid suggestion that I can pass my Groupons to my friends to use if I can't make any reservation.

I emailed and explain to him again the situation (exactly like what I have written above), he just mentioned that "sorry the groupon you mentioned are used and cannot be refunded" and suggested that I “check with the merchant if there is any problem”. I tried to emphasize again that there WAS A SYSTEM ERROR AND I HAVE NOT USED MY GROUPON VOUCHERS AT ALL and THE MERCHANT DOES NOT HONOUR THE GROUPON SOLD even though the groupons have not expired. And since Groupon is collecting commission from the sales of vouchers, I don’t see why I should be dealing with the merchant directly when the problem was between Groupon and her (that groupon didn’t pay her etc.) Anyway, I have yet to get further reply from Groupon (they have clearly exceeded their promise of the next working day or even next two working days for all their response so I’m not sure when they will reply me again...) Well, will update if there if any update.

Last edited by foodhunter; 21-03-2012 at 10:27 PM.. Reason: typo
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Old 21-03-2012, 10:37 PM   #13
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you are lucky if you managed to use your groupon vouchers for Joo mak restaurant... Below is my horror story of my Groupon encounter for Joo Mak restaurant...
...
ise of the next working day or even next two working days for all their response so I’m not sure when they will reply me again...) Well, will update if there if any update.
Sorry to hear abt your experience with the groupon vouchers. I bought quite a no. of groupon vouchers. So far, i asked for 3 refunds. 1 was cos the review was really bad, 1 was cos the merchant closed down (groupon should have informed all the voucher holders!) n last one was cos i had problems getting an appt. Groupon refunded me the vouchers (1 cash n 2 credit refunds) without much hassle. I always called them instead of just emailing them as their email response is very slow. I tink the prob in your case is also due because your voucher was 'used'.

Try calling them rather than waiting for their email reply bah. All the best.
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Old 22-03-2012, 01:21 AM   #14
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usually i prefer to email instead of calling them unless required urgently, as they serve as communication evidence. esp with different cso handling the queries, one can get different replies and they will also able to follow up by referring to the forwarded content.
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Old 22-03-2012, 03:27 PM   #15
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Well, I have made 2 phone calls and 3 emails regarding this matter and the problem was not solved. They keep insisting (in the phone and in the email) that I should just approach with the merchant directly. I tried dealing with the restaurant but lady ower insisted that Groupon owed her money and did not pay her etc and she didn't know why was the Groupon redeemed. I hope Groupon will try to look into this matter (which I doubt they will) as apparently the two persons who answered the phone sounded totally ignorant about this issue (as if they have never heard about such complain from other customers/collegues who have handled such cases). I made the phone calls after sending emails with reply (means at least the person who replied my email knows about this issue and never alert other collegues to look into this issue). If not, my $40 (or $80 worth) will be gone to waste. This is definitely not a small amount for me, as $40 makes up 3% of my monthly income.

Anyway, ppl, thx for your advice.
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