I had to go to Civic today for some vaccinations and other errands. Since I was in town, I took the opportunity to do a little shopping and have lunch at Godori.
After lunch, I went to Kim's Groceries - on the Petrie plaza walk, downstairs near the East Row bus station, to buy some Japanese ingredients for my okonomiyaki. Yes, Japanese, at the Korean grocery - Korea and Japan have a long and complicated history together, and the culinary traditions overlap to some degree. I'm told that many Japanese restaurants outside Japan are run by Koreans - the ANU Sizzle Bento certainly is. Anyway, Kim's is the place to buy both Korean and Japanese groceries - mostly dry goods and frozen but some limited fresh produce, too. Go there for your fresh, um, I mean home made kim chee, and obscure Japanese ice creams, as well as DVDs and info on the local Korean community. A helpful young man at the cashier's desk went and found bonito shavings for me when I couldn't recognise the packaging. And while thinking Korean, I've noticed that two new Korean restaurants have opened recently, one on City Walk and one on Northbourne Avenue. Korean seems to be popping up all over.
Godori is a tiny place on Petrie Plaza, which opened a couple of years ago. I can't recommend it strongly enough. Go there! Their food is fresh, tasty and elegantly simple. There are plenty of vegetables, many of them in light brine-pickled form, and hearty rice and noodle dishes. The Bi Bim Bab stone pot rice is fabulous - literally a hot stone pot, containing a layer of rice, topped with assorted fresh and lightly pickled vegetables, and a fried egg. A bottle of hot chilli sauce comes to table for you to add as you please. Add some pork, beef or squid if you want, or keep it vego. You should eat form the top at first, letting the rice sit a bit to develop a delicious toasted crust at the bottom of the bowl. A set with miso soup is $12ish.
They also make several kinds of gyoza ($5-9), and do other meal sets like Bulgogi (grilled beef or pork) and a kimchee hot pot. Seasonal specials turn up, too - I had a wonderful mushroom hot pot a few months ago, and an intriguing summery set of fresh salad leaves with salmon, salmon caviar and rice. Most dishes are in the $10-15 mark. Soft drinks and an intriguing variety of teas are available (try the quince and honey), but Godori is unlicensed. It is open in early evenings later in the week, and is a good option for a light pre-theatre meal. But I never get to do that with the Bloke, because they don't have beer."span>