Sky Kong Kong Cafe - Soju Come Here Often?!
Sky Kong Kong is an organic Korean cafe situated just round the corner from the Bear Pit on Haymarket Walk.
Sky Kong Kong believe in fresh, healthy food that benefits the body and mind… (maybe not my mind - that’s too far gone). It seems they also believe in serving copious amount of Soju served neat or bombed into a glass of crisp Korean beer and a dash of star-anise infused syrup. Yay.
At the helm of the modestly sized kitchen is Wizzy, whose Korean roots show in both the dishes and the simple, yet functional interior. Communal tables are uncluttered and a bamboo screen separates the diners from the kitchen.
We started with the seafood pancakes (pictured in the title image) which were small and slim but packed with flavour; a nice starter and a good indication of what was to come. The texture was so soft, with the spring onions and carrot still providing a bit of bite. We agreed that we could have eaten another 5 of these, and that a pancakes natural state is in a stack. Does anyone really need a stack of seafood pancakes? Perhaps not.
[pullquote] "Wizzy explained that she adds a minimal amount of spices and herbs to her food, to allow the quality and natural flavours of her ingredients to speak for themselves" [/pullquote]Inspired by summers spent at Wizzy's grandparents' farmhouse in the Korean countryside, the dishes are an incredibly refreshing change from anything else you may find in Bristol. Wizzy also had experience of working in a Michelin Star restaurant which shows in the dishes which look pretty special.
You may also struggle to find somewhere to rival the freshness of the ingredients too, with produce from Wizzy's own allotment in Speedwell. Also keeping it local with items from the Fish Shop and Butchers on Gloucester Road (T & P A Murray). All fresh ingredients are bought on the day, so Wizzy or Cecilia will head to the suppliers in the morning with a menu often decided by what is available.
Next up was the main event, with Cecilia bringing an array of dishes to the table, each as colorful and different as the food served within them. The red mullet came whole which I appreciate won’t be to everyone’s taste, but the fish was cooked perfectly, with the skin just lightly salted and crispy, and the meat flaking away with the slightest pressure.
The ginseng chicken was similarly soft and nicely seasoned, stuffed with sticky rice, dates and ginseng root. Wizzy explained that she adds a minimal amount of spices and herbs to her food, to allow the quality and natural flavours of her ingredients to speak for themselves – this was nowhere more apparent than with the broth that came with the chicken, it was so flavoursome and comforting, yet so simple, I sipped it until the last drop was gone.
I also really enjoyed the banchan (small dishes that are more often than not included on the side of Korean meals) too – the homemade kimchi in particular was just the right level of sour and had a really good soft yet firm texture and all three small dishes complimented the flavours of the two meats really well.
This formidable feast was washed down with the light Korean beer Hite – which is crisp and refreshing with the earthy, lightly spiced flavours of the dishes. Want to level up your beer a notch? Do how the Koreans do, and chuck in a shot of their sweet potato liquor Soju – think of it as a lighter, slightly sweeter and much more pleasant version of vodka. That said, if you drink a small bottle of it with dinner (ahem), you’ll know about it.
Cecilia and Wizzy are soon putting on a speed dating night for all you soju lovers out there and have plans to do sushi making sessions and kimchi making sessions in the future too as well as a detox Korean temple cuisine day which like Sky Kong Kong, promises to be unlike anything you’ve ever experienced before.
Because of the ever changing menu of Sky Kong Kong I would suggest the best way to determine whether you should take a visit is to actually take a visit! You can also check out the website for upcoming events that may or may not involve Soju..
Please note: this meal was received free of charge, but in no way impacted on our opinion. We were not obliged to write a positive review, and the venue did not see this review before it was put up on the site.