Ever since I crossed off
eating bibimbap at kwik chek, I wished I had not. Instead of being devastated that it was no longer on my edible bucket list, I added it to my eat-as-often-as-you-are-able-bucket list. Another recommendation from Valerie proving itself list-worthy. After ranting and raving of it’s the mouth-watering goodness, T and I met Kate and her husband there recently.
Heads up, Kwik Chek is not known for it’s opulent atmosphere. The restaurant part of kwik chek operates in the back of a convenient store in midtown Memphis well-stocked with beer, every imaginable flavor of chocolate milk, countless varieties of chips, etc. Masked by all of the ‘junk food’ is some of the best food I’ve had in Memphis and the best Korean T has had outside of Korea. They also have an extensive sandwich menu, many of them being Mediterranean inspired.
We started off with a couple of appetizers, first we had some vegetarian & some regular mandu. They are steamed and then fried and so good! I preferred the ones with meat, but both were incredible. The soy sauce based dipping sauce that accompanied the mandu made them a perfect pair.
We also had hummus and pita. The ladies at Kwik Chek warm the pita and sprinkle with a blend of herbs elevating it beyond your standard pita. The hummus is good, but doesn’t have a chance compared to the hummus made famous by my friend, Samya.
We also shared a rather large piece of spanakopita. The flavors of the spinach and cheese were phenomenal, but they serve it chilled. The boys warmed theirs in their dolsot
boys GENIUS and claimed that it was awesome once warmed!!
What is a dolsot? Only the best invention ever! A dolsot is the stone pot in which you receive your mouth-watering bibimbap. As we were finishing our appetizers, out came four steaming and sizzling dolsots. Where to being in describing this more that bucket list worthy bowl of tastiness?
Bibimbap is a protein of your choice (beef, chicken, or tofu) and whatever selection of vegetables the kitchen has on hand that day, topped with sesame seeds, a chili sauce, and a sunny-side up egg all atop a bed of steamed rice.
You are supposed to mix everything together, which I always find difficult to do as it is presented in such a beautiful way. I somehow overcome myself and gradually begin to mix the vegetables and beef with the rice and watch as the yolk of the egg magically coats everything creating the most scrumptious glaze over everything.
One of the best parts about this dish (who am I kidding, every part about this dish is the best!) is the dolsot! This crazy hot bowl keeps every single bite of your dinner hot. I am not sure how long it has this affect since I have trouble pacing myself and I finish my dinner quite speedily. I do know, though, that as I make my way to the last remaining grains of rice– what is usually true is not true in this case. Those last grains of rice are just as good, if not better than your first few bites. The heat from the dolsot crisps up your rice and makes it taste almost like fried rice- YUMMMMM!
Well, if you want to join me in transferring bibimbap from Kwik Chek in Memphis from your edible bucket list to your perpetual edible bucket list, go there! Then go there again, as-often-as-you-are-able!