Koreana Restaurant – Dolsot Bibimbap Korean Food Montreal

Strolling along St Denis Street in Montreal is a perfect place for any solo traveler visiting the city. There are boutiques if you like shopping, coffee shops with Wi-Fi, art galleries to browse, street art, and dozens of restaurants to choose from – many with outdoor terraces to sit and watch the people go by on St Denis.

Staying at the Hyatt Regency on Jeanne-Mance Street I hadn’t wandered over to St Denis the first two nights in Montreal. I had barely made my connecting flight on the way to Montreal and arrived at the hotel around 9 pm. Feeling the need for a cocktail and dinner without having to make any effort I plunked myself down at the SIX Resto Bar and ordered some wine and an entrée of grouper.

Within a few minutes I was engrossed in conversation with two vacationing students seated next to me and the following night we met at the same bar for drinks and continued our conversation. My bar stool companions left town the next day so I wandered over to my old favorite St Denis Street in search of dinner. I wasn’t sure what type  of food I was craving but I knew I wanted something tasty, something different.

Dolsot bibimbap served in a sizzling hot stone bowl at Koreana restaurant in Montreal Quebec

Koreana dolsot bibimbap served in a sizzling hot stone bowl

I perused several menus but nothing really caught my eye or convinced my belly that I had found the right place to appease the grumbling. Then I spotted Koreana. There was a dish on the menu called dolsot bibimbap with an accompanying photo.

Dolsot bibimbap available at Koreana Restaurant 1723 Rue St Denis Montreal Quebec

Koreana Restaurant 1723 Rue St Denis Montreal Quebec

Greeted with a big smile by the proprietress I sat on the small patio to enjoy the cool evening weather. I looked at the menu to see what other offerings might entice me but ultimately ordered the dolsot bibimbap with shrimp. And a beer to quench my thirst.

Beer to quench the thirst on a summer day - Montreal Quebec - Koreana Pub Coreen

Beer to quench the thirst on a summer day

I enjoyed my beer and I was also served a selection of tiny plates with flavorful appetizers. I tried the bean sprouts first because I knew I would like them. Next I tasted the pickled daikon radish and carrots which I also liked. Finally I let my chopsticks reach for the little dish of kimchi. I was pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed the taste. I had heard that kimchi was an acquired taste and could have an unpleasant aroma. I quite liked the spicy and tangy flavor.

Korean meal at Koreana Pub Coreen in Montreal - bachan (side dishes) including kimchi

Side dishes known as bachan typically include kimchi

I later learned that the little side dishes are called bachan and these are part of a typical Korean meal. When there are several diners the bachan are placed in the center of table for everyone to share.

My main dish of dolsot bibimbap arrived at the table in sizzling fashion. You see dolsot bibimbap is served in a hot stone bowl with the ingredients sizzling for minutes afterwards. Oil is placed in the bottom of the bowl to allow the layer of rice to become a little crispy. All the other ingredients are placed upon the rice in a neat arrangement.

Tasty dolsot bibimbap Korean food on St Denis Street in Montreal Quebec - a great city for solo travelers

Tasty dolsot bibimbap Korean food on St Denis Street in Montreal

I added some hot chili sauce and stirred up all the ingredients in the bowl as I had been instructed to do when the dish was served. Then I noticed the raw egg on the bottom of the bowl and I stopped stirring. I let the egg sit on the bottom and cook a little. Raw egg is just not my thing. I find it quite repulsive. Thankfully it was not placed on top of all those delicious vegetables and shrimp!

I gobbled up my bowl of tasty veggies, rice, and shrimp – avoiding the egg – and was very happy with my meal. The combination of vegetables with rice would have been sufficient as a meal I think.

I looked up the words dolsot bibimbap and found out that dolsot means stone pot and bibimbap means mixed rice in the Korean language.

I am pleased that I finally tried Korean food and will be looking to try more on my travels – perhaps a trip to South Korea is in my future?

What are some of your food adventures?

Do you like to try new foods when you are traveling or do you prefer to stick with familiar favorites?

A journey through the alphabet with ABC Wednesday Project where people from around the world create and share a weekly post.

About the Author

Susan Moore's first solo travel experience was traveling around SE Asia for 7 months in 1993. It was life changing and extraordinary. Currently Susan is living a nomadic life, working and roadtripping around the USA and Canada. You can reach Susan Moore at Facebook or Twitter

24 Comments

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  1. ellen b says:

    I do enjoy food adventures if the food isn’t wiggling. While in Southern California last week I really enjoyed some Armenian food. Glad you had a good experience with the Korean food…

    • Susan Moore says:

      lol Ellen I think food that’s wiggling is not my thing either!

      I haven’t tried much Armenian food yet, it’s similar to Turkish or Middle Eastern cuisine I think. i need to go on a round-the-world food tour to try all the different foods and cooking styles!

  2. Roger Green says:

    Lots of great food in Montreal – or there was in 1992, the last time I was there!

    ROG, ABCW

    • Susan Moore says:

      Yes there is plenty of great food in Montreal! A great variety of cuisines and also prices. I have enjoyed fantastic meals that cost only a few dollars and I have also enjoyed meals that cost me over $100 in Montreal. I love the variety of restaurants and I also have no problem finding a place that I feel very comfortable dining alone.

      You haven’t been since 1992? It’s time to say bonjour to Montreal again I think :)

  3. Reader Wil says:

    Interesting place! You experience all kind of adventures also with food. Your life is never boring!
    Wil, ABCW Team

    • Susan Moore says:

      Thank you Wil – I do enjoy life a great deal! It’s fun to try new things and if I don’t like it that’s okay, at least I gave it a try and I have the experience. I have a great deal of curiosity and I think that is why I like to explore the world with all the senses.

  4. Leovi says:

    Yes, delicious Korean food! Excellent photos!

  5. Photo Cache says:

    I’m pretty adventurous when it comes to trying out food when traveling. At least try once then I can say I tried but did not like it and will never have it again :)

    So far I haven’t had anything that I didn’t really like except kimchi. I like Korean food, at least in my limited experience, but kimchi is a no-likey for me :)

    • Susan Moore says:

      It’s fun trying new foods isn’t it?! I always like to try foods even if I think I won’t like it. Although, like Ellen mentioned I don’t think I would like to eat anything that is still moving! And I don’t eat much meat – tiny portions are okay though. I think a lot of people don’t like kimchi and that is why I was a bit surprised how much I liked it.

      Enjoy your travel and food adventures :)

  6. KVVS MURTHY says:

    Happy to know about Korean food…thanks for sharing!

  7. Wow! That food looks absolutely delicious, had me drooling.
    I quite like runny egg in an omelette but I certainly couldn’t eat anything that was wiggling.
    We have a Korean restaurant somewhere in Liverpool, I shall have to look it up and try it…I’ll let you know Susan.
    I do enjoy your blogs, always so interesting and well illustrated.

    Best wishes,
    Di x

    • Susan Moore says:

      Thank you Di, so glad you enjoyed it! I hope you do get to try some Korean food soon. I like that it’s quite healthy too as there are a lot of vegetables used in Korean cooking.

      Cheers,
      Susan

  8. Freda Mans says:

    Looks so yummy. Will have to remember it the next time I am in Montreal!

  9. Joy says:

    I’ve never tried Korean food but it looks delicious in your photo especially with that nicely chilled beer and your description has my mouth watering. As Dianne mentions in the comments she thinks there is a Korean restaurant in Liverpool I will be looking out for it next time I’m there. Last time I found a wonderful Portuguese Tapas restaurant which was hiden away in a side street.

    • Susan Moore says:

      Hi Joy, yes the beer compliments Korean food quite nicely, I hope you get to try out the restaurant in Liverpool soon. You mention Portuguese tapas and it makes me hungry visualizing all the tasting offerings they might have.

      It’s fun to travel via the dinner table :)

      Cheers,
      Susan

  10. Oh, I’m not nearly as adventurous as you!

    • Susan Moore says:

      I think my curiosity gets me to try a lot of foods just so I can find out what something tastes like and especially if a lot of other people don’t like a certain food I want to try it and find out for myself what that food tastes like. Curiosity is the impetus for my adventures I think :)

  11. I love food, too and trying new ones. Great photos!

    • Susan Moore says:

      Thank you! I have a big habit of taking photos of my food – and my friends food – before eating. Some would say it is an obsession but I think it’s just a healthy fondness for the joy of food :)

  12. I love trying new foods when I travel. One of my main pleasures in exploring the world is discovering new ways that people eat similar foods. Food is a way to enjoy a culture but also is a window into the history of the country, who conquered them or who they were conquered by. And delicious!

    • Susan Moore says:

      Yes it is interesting to see the ways that a culture has been marked by historical events. It was a pleasant surprise to me when I first visited Indonesia years ago, crepe style pancakes were popular for breakfast – a Dutch influence.

      Thinking about the ways people eat similar foods, here In Texas people always look at me askance when I squeeze a healthy pool of ketchup on a plate to dip my grilled cheese sandwich. In Canada no one would give me a second glance.

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