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Korean restaurant to open at Bathurst & Eglinton

t
Tatai Nov 30, 2010 06:37 PM

I noticed a sign announcing the upcoming opening of "Bi Bim Bap Korean Stone Bowl Riceteria" on Eglinton west of Bathurst. I hope it'll be a serious Korean restaurant and not a newfangled, dumbed down version of the cuisine. I'm also wondering if they plan to offer menu items other than bibimbap. (A Google search does reveal that bibim bop-only restaurants are common in Korea.) Does anyone know anything more about this place?

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  1. t
    Tatai Dec 18, 2010 05:22 AM

    Do they offer brown rice as an option instead of white rice? I'd like to try the place, but am even more wary of it now, given your review. Sure sounds like dumbed down, unauthentic Korean food to me.

    12 Replies
    1. re: Tatai
      s
      StoneBowl Dec 18, 2010 12:10 PM

      Hi Guys. I'm the owner of Bi Bim Bap.
      Yes we have brown rice.
      100% authentic. We even make our own Kimchi.
      The fusion stuff is there because I'm a foodie that likes to try new things here and there.

      1. re: StoneBowl
        t
        Tatai Dec 18, 2010 04:26 PM

        Great to hear. Do you have a website yet?

        1. re: StoneBowl
          mrsleny Dec 18, 2010 06:37 PM

          I'm very excited to hear there are vegetarian options. They are not easy to find in many Korean restaurants. I hope there will be a website up soon with online menu.

          1. re: mrsleny
            s
            StoneBowl Dec 21, 2010 07:38 PM

            Yes.
            Website is open.
            www.stonebowl.ca

            1. re: StoneBowl
              m
              magic Dec 22, 2010 05:42 AM

              I look forward to trying your food soon!

              1. re: StoneBowl
                Davwud Jan 19, 2011 10:47 AM

                I took a look around the website and I'm impressed.

                I've never had BBB but you make it sound delicious and the care you put into your food makes it all that much better.

                We'll see ya sometime soon.

                DT
                www.davwudsfoodcourt.blogspot.com

                1. re: Davwud
                  t
                  Tatai Jan 19, 2011 11:40 AM

                  I've had bibimbap a number of times and have enjoyed it. I am also very impressed with the website; wish it had been up when the restaurant first opened.

              2. re: mrsleny
                m
                magic Dec 28, 2010 01:13 PM

                I went and really enjoyed it. And yes, they have veggie options. Their lunch special was a mushroom bowl for $4.99, which seems like a great price.

                I had the 'Korean BBQ BiBimBap' and thought it was delish. The sauce is housemade, so no MSG, which I love. And it was very tasty.

                I was given two complimentary dishes I think the owner was trying out: veggie tempura and a post-meal 'dessert' cinnamon ginger/drink. The veggie tempura were fine. Aside from the carrot one, which I did not care for, they were good, but a touch on the plain side (for me at least). I would not rush to order, but then I am not a huge veggie tempura fanatic. The cinnamon dessert drink was delicious and something I've never had before. A bit of sliced dried apricot and pine nuts made a tasty, simple, and pretty garnish to the drink. And these two courses were on the house in my case, so that was very sweet and appreciated.

                The owner and staff are incredibly nice and passionate about food and it’s a simple but nice place. It's good to have tasty bibimbap in the area now.

                I look forward to returning.

                1. re: magic
                  mrsleny Dec 28, 2010 06:44 PM

                  I love that cinnamon/ginger after dinner drink. Very refreshing and probably helps with digestion. We used to get complimentary servings at a small Korean/Japanese restaurant (Sam Jung?) on Leslie south of Sheppard. I've never had it before. Unfortunately, they must have changed management because the last few times we were there, the service was terrible and we never got the cinnamon drink. Glad to hear we can get it at Stone Bowl.

                  I make my own now. It's very simple. I think dried persimmon is the usual garnish, though I don't usually bother with it. I like this recipe: http://appetiteforchina.com/recipes/c....

              3. re: StoneBowl
                TorontoJo Jan 19, 2011 09:54 AM

                Any plans to offer dolsot bi bim bap? The crispy rice crust on the bowl is one of my favourite parts of bi bim bap. I see that you serve in a stone bowl, but it's not clear whether it's a hot stone bowl.

                1. re: TorontoJo
                  s
                  StoneBowl Jan 19, 2011 10:13 AM

                  Sorry Jo. Yes it is a hot stone bowl. I had the bowls custom made in Korea just the way I like it. High iron content keeps my bowls hotter than others for longer. Drives the guy doin the dishes nuts cause he has to wait 10 min after he gets them to cool them enough to touch.

                  1. re: StoneBowl
                    TorontoJo Jan 19, 2011 10:17 AM

                    Excellent to know, thank you!

            2. b
              bogie Jan 19, 2011 09:48 AM

              Looks good, I'm def interested in the kalbi BiBimBap.

              1. k
                klf Jan 22, 2011 06:07 PM

                Just wanted to add another positive review of this place. We went for an early dinner tonight and ordered the vegetable tempura and the traditional Bibimbap.

                The veggie tempura were more like fritters - thin slices of red onion, red pepper, carrots, and maybe zucchini (?) enveloped in batter. It was a nice little snack to start with.

                The traditional bibimbap with original sauce was excellent. The variety of vegetables and other goodies in the bowl were satisfying, and there was a nice layer of crispy rice at the bottom (definitely my favourite part). Came with miso soup, kimchi, and the aforementioned cinnamon-ginger tea. For $8.99, this was a steal. Will definitely be back to try the BBQ and the kalbi versions.

                2 Replies
                1. re: klf
                  1sweetpea Jan 23, 2011 04:55 AM

                  Are any banchan (assorted small side dishes to accompany meals) besides kimchi served?

                  1. re: 1sweetpea
                    t
                    Tatai Jan 23, 2011 07:21 AM

                    Unfortunately no, and the kimchi that is served is almost flavourless, with no heat at all.

                    I dined at the restaurant a couple of days ago and found it to be okay, as in another neighbourhood restaurant that I'll occasionally go to or take out from. But, in my opinion, it's not a destination restaurant. The bibimbaps we had were good but not very generous a serving. There's a choice of five different sauces available for mixing in, and all of them, including the "suicide," were quite mild and on the sweet side.

                2. s
                  stargazercd Jan 29, 2011 07:55 PM

                  Five of us went tonight and enjoyed it a lot.
                  We ordered 5 different brown rice bi-bim-bap to share amongst us: Traditional, Korean BBQ, Kalbi, Mushroom and Seed. They were all very tasty but my favorite is their Mushroom bi-bim-bap. It came with lots of mushrooms (7 kinds according to their menu) and the texture and flavour were very good.
                  We also had their Crunchy Wasabi Salad and Sweet Potato with Balsamic Apple Go Chu Jang Sauce. The salad was refreshing and perfect as an appetizer. The sweet potato with go chu jang (Korean hot sauce) was a bit of a surprise - odd combination but it works well.
                  There's no banchan typical to traditional Korean restaurants. Instead they have 2 kinds of kimchi - white and red. White kimchi is very mild (no hot red pepper) and quite refreshing. Their red kimchi (with hot pepper) is not fiery but works well with spicy bi-bim-bap. Regarding their bi-bim-bap sauce we tried 4 different kinds - most of them are on the sweet side but the hottest one (still a bit sweet) worked for us.

                  Overall, we enjoyed the experience and will go back.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: stargazercd
                    m
                    magic Apr 29, 2011 07:34 PM

                    Agreed. The mushroom bibimbap is really good. Don't even miss meat. I really like this place as well as the owner. Such a good guy and serious about doing food right.

                  2. m
                    MoonReflections Feb 22, 2011 10:58 AM

                    Love this small restaurant. We go for fresh lunches. Tasty too. Very friendly owner and staff. The decor is simple--but peaceful.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: MoonReflections
                      domesticgodess Feb 23, 2011 05:50 PM

                      I also had a great experience eating there and cant wait to return. The owner is lovely, the space is clean and modern and the my bim bim bap was tasty. Next time Im going to try the mushroom bim bim bap.

                    2. pescatarian Jun 3, 2011 08:38 PM

                      Went there tonight because I happened to be in the area. Tried the seed bi bim bap with brown rice and it was really good. The extra hot sauce had good flavour although could be a bit spicier for my liking, seeing as it was the spiciest. Not as many or traditional banchan (kimchi and a pickled veg were brought out with a miso soup). The cinnamon "tea" (it's cold) at the end was a nice touch. The owner was very friendly, as I see others have mentioned. We sat outside and he joked "if I forget about you guys, just call me there and he pointed to the number on the store sign". You could tell he was joking and it was cute. Plus, they didn't forget about us at all. I would go back.

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