Saturday, July 19, 2008

Toto, I Don't Think We're in Ma Lul Ha Lu - Experience at Mung Dong Restaurant

Our visit to Mung Dong was a confusing one. To understand my adventure, rewind to two weeks ago when we were having breakfast with some of our Korean friends. They were all raving about some corn dish mixed with mayonnaise and cooked with Kraft singles. The idea was all to foreign to my Chinese-American mind. I consider myself quite open minded and adventurous when it comes to food, but corn with mayo??? with a Kraft Single? Mind boggling! It didn't sound appetizing at all, but our friends assured us that it was awesome, and I'll try (almost) anything once!

A week later, we read (on Yelp) about Ma Lul Ha Lu, which had great reviews. Oh, and guess what?!? The restaurant served this mystery corn we had heard so much about. I was sold and decided to pay this Ma Lul Ha Lu a visit so that I could see if my friends were right about corn with mayo.

As we entered the Super H complex, we could not find anything called Ma Lul Ha Lu so we called. I asked where the restaurant was, to which a man replied with a stern, "WHY?!?!?" I responded, "err...because I want to eat at your restaurant?" When we finally arrived at the restaurant, the English read, Man Doo, which we knew was a big Korean Dumpling and not fried chicken, which Ma Lul is known for. We did see a pic of fried chicken inside, and the phone number matched, so it appeared to be the correct place. We went in and were seated.

The server didn't speak English and looked a bit stressed that we couldn't converse, but she did find someone who spoke some. When we asked about the corn dish, the lady looked perplexed and suggested that we eat dumplings instead. We quickly called our friends trying to find out the name of the corn dish. Our friend could only tell us that it was part of "Anju" a general term. "We would like to order some 'anju' please." The lady, again looked confused and said..."if you want alcohol, we don't serve any." Apparently "anju" are dishes that you eat when drinking Korean alcohol. She politely explained this concept to us and we dropped the subject of the corn.

After much discussion, we learned that Ma Lul Ha Lu no longer exists. The business was bought out about a month ago. They are now called Mung Dong, named after a famous part of Korea known for Man Doo. To our dismay, they do not have corn with mayo and kraft singles, but their dumplings were pretty good. We also had the fried chicken was decent, not the best fried chicken - but still good. It was juicy and well flavored.

The place probably deserves closer to a 3.5/5.0, but the ingredients were very fresh and you can even watch them making the man doo from scratch. The servers were very nice and seem to have quite a passion for the food. I'm still looking for a place with the corn dish, but I wouldn't mind coming back here for some dumplings.

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