And I’ve finally found one of the most affordable BBQ places in KL.
They’re aren’t exactly dirt cheap – but I have to say their barbecue set comes in for quite a value. Today we’re going to take a look at Sae Ma Eul, located in the corners of Solaris Mont Kiara’s many Korean restaurants. The reason why I thought this place was worth a review is because our usual Korean eat outs for four would cost about 150 to have us walking away with a full stomach. This time round, we were brought to surprise because the bill only came up to a total of RM 106. If we decide to pay cash, we get 6% off – which is superb! One of the reasons why I once used to love Korean restaurants in KL was because they always gave the Cash or Credit amount option. Most of them took it off after some time, but I’m glad to see Sae Ma Eul still practicing it.
So what did I order in Sae Ma Eul, which translates to New Village. Sae means new, Ma Eul is village.
I ordered Item No 44 – which was a set that had about 4-5 pieces of pork meat with four baby octopus. Their numbers vary at each visit, so you may get an extra baby octopus at times. This was a good set as it’s only about RM 55. In many other places, one slice of meat would already cost you an average RM 15 – and most of the time it is compulsary for you to order two portions. This makes the normal barbecue price to be RM 30 for two pieces of meat. Here you get an extra few more slobs with juicy squids to top up. Definitely worth the package.
A glimpse at their menu
A little close up to our squid friends. It was my first time barbecue-ing octopus so I didn’t know what to expect. I’ve always only had pork or chicken on my barbecue stove. Their octopus were very well marinated in red korean sauce!
Putting the real deal to slowly cook. The best part about Sae Ma Eul is that you get to cook your meat yourself. If you’re in for the whole “D-I-Y” experience, this place is definitely good for you. I never preferred having waitresses cook my meat for me because it feel’s like I’m having experience stolen right infront of my eyes. But I know that some people do love being served, then if so – this place is probably not it.
Speaking of D-I-Y, one of the reasons why we all chose to come try this restaurant out was because of this pot below. The handmade rice ball dish!
They give you a pair of plastic gloves (you can ask for a pair more if you like) for you to mix the ingredients together, which will already be pre-prepared in the pot. It has seaweed, gochujang, sesame and rice. All you gotta do is mix everything together and make your own rice balls to eat and barbecue if you like.
Close up on our rice ball making.
Sam does the meat cooking for us. Another reason why I love this place is because it reminds me so much of my barbecue days back in Seoul. After class, we would go to places like these with stretchable suctions (in the photo).
We were quite slow at cooking as all concentration was on the rice balls, one of the kind waiters just came by to help us out
You can choose to just eat it like that or to barbecue it a little bit so the outer layer becomes crisp!
Proud owner of some rice balls
As things seemed a little too dry we order a small kimchi jjigae to share
Love the whole experience of doing this but if I were to rate the taste of this dish, it would have to be a 5.5/10. It’s not very seasoned and may just be a little to bland for my liking. It was also supposed to be spicy – but did not even come close to anything of spice.
Moving on to something else worth raving on, finally space for some squid barbecue!
Man these were so juicy – I regret not getting octopuses the many times I’ve had Korean.
I must say the meat didn’t turn out too juicy or extremely nice. It wasn’t exactly marinated to have the yummy taste you get in some other restaurants you pay a higher price for. I guess that’s why they give you the sesame oil + salt dip, which I extremely love! Major plus points for serving it without having to request for it. This is a REAL Korean bbq restaurant.
And so – we start eating! Chal mok-kesseumnida!
Right after – we headed over to my favorite Korean dessert shop in Solaris. And it’s probably not the one you’ve been hearing about. Should be posting up about that place very shortly after this. Separated the posts cause these two places deserves their own. My place is called Nabe and has an outlet in both Ampang and Solaris. It’s actually a bakery, and what coincidence it was just located right across Sae Ma Eul! Extreme convenience.
I would rate Sae Ma Eul a 6.5/10, for it’s D.I.Y experience, valuable price points and also some good stews. Try not to go after 6.30PM as it would be extremely full and you may have to wait 30 minutes or so for a table. Reservations are available on weekdays only.
This place is not halal, to start off. If you are looking for a Korean bbq place with no pork – 688 Barbecue and Steamboat Restaurant, as they claim to not have pork in their menu. I’m going there in a few days so probably can do a review for that too – if it’s worth shouting about. Address of Sae Ma Eul would be :-
Solaris Mont’Kiara (GF 1-1,1-2,1-3),
50480 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia