While visiting the far northside of San Antonio we came across a restaurant called Sushi Express, hardly the name of a top notch Korean restaurant, but don’t be fooled by the name. Once inside there are two menus, one of which is for Korean food.
In some ways the menu is fairly standard with Pork Bulgogi, Galbi, and Bibimbap, as well as many other dishes, but those dishes are standard for a reason. When made well, as they were here, they are delicious.The portions were ample and the spice level on the Bulgogi in particular was just right. The Banchan were varied and I really enjoyed the broccoli in a light ginger sauce. My daughter, Elle had the Galbi, and other than a slight hesitation on how best to eat it with chopsticks, ate it with great enjoyment. Elle did however make the mistake of inhaling while eating some kimchi which resulted in her basically pepper spraying the back of her throat. She managed to recover by eating copious amounts of rice and drinking water, and learned that no matter how delicious it is don’t rush to eat your kimchi. By the time we were done there was nothing left on our plates.
The staff were friendly and they all greeted us as we arrived which was very Korean. In Korea, and some other countries like France, it is the custom to greet your customer with a ‘good day’ type phrase and for the customer to return the greeting. When you travel be sure to remember to copy the greeting and farewell customs you see and you’ll look and feel far less like a tourist. Our waiter was pleasantly efficient, making sure we were well cared for and also chatting with us a little, especially after we said we had been to Korea. He was from Seoul and as we spoke we agreed that the food there was indeed amazing and then he mentioned the Seoul subway. He thought it cumbersome, because to get where he was going he had to use the subway, a bus, and then a taxi so he preferred a car. We however, thought the Seoul subway was one of the best subway systems we’d used because it got us to everywhere we wanted to be in an easy and efficient manner.(If you are worried about using the subway system in Korea don’t be, it is really quite straightforward to use, and I’ll explain more in another post.)
The owner made the rounds of all the tables checking on everything and chatting with the regulars. He obviously knew some of them as he greeted them by name. There were multiple groups at tables including a birthday party and everyone seemed happy and they were clearly enjoying their meals. I hope one day to have eaten here enough to become a regular and be part of the family atmosphere.
The restaurant is also a sushi restaurant and the sushi selection looked good and very appetizing. But we were there for the Korean menu as we’d just booked our flights for our next trip to Korea and were celebrating.
There was a decent selection of Asian drinks including Soju, although unfortunately no Korean beer. I found this out by a rather funny conversation with our waiter. I asked if they had any Korean beer, he replied ‘beer’ and I said ‘yes, beer’ and this went back and forth until I said ‘Cass? Hite?’ and that’s when I sadly found out they didn’t have any. He did offer the soju, although he looked at Elle and said she couldn’t have any since she was driving, which was kind of funny and sweet.
As we left everyone said goodbye and we were sorry to leave. Next visit I’m going to try out lunch because they have Bento boxes as well as Korea boxed lunches. I’ll let you know how they are.
Here’s to Happy Eating: http://www.sushiexpresssa.com/index.html