On May 11, my sister Sandy and I were in Honolulu, HI. and were looking for a place to have lunch. John was working that afternoon, so we had a few hours to do what ever we wanted. We were looking around the Ala Moana Shopping Center and spotted this really fun looking place called “Gen Korean BBQ House”.
MY OVERALL RATING: 9 FOOD: 8 SERVICE: 9 AMBIENCE: 9 VALUE FOR YOUR MONEY: 10
What a surprise! It was SO cute inside and smelled SO good!. The place was big inside but quaint at the same time. It had an eclectic feel to it with “chill” music (my fav) and it was bustling, people all over, definitely the place to be! We both liked the atmosphere and decided to give it a try. We were pleasantly surprised to be seated within minutes.
The server came over right away and explained everything. It was only $19.99 per person for “all you can eat”! You could choose from anything on the large menu and they bring it to you raw, 3 items at a time, and you cook it right there. I was in my element and it felt good to be cooking. (When I’m out of town, I practically have withdrawals because I can’t be cooking)! They also brought you 3 Dipping Sauces and a variety of pickled veggies and you could choose Rice or Noodles to go with it.
Sandy with the Menu…gosh so much to choose from….we are not at all experienced at this. We looked to the server for guidance more than once, I must say.
We ordered in stages, cooked in stages….and had fun doing it. Quite an experience. Neither of us had ever been to a place like this before. Oh, and I forgot to mention, that because it was all you can eat, there was a 2 hour time limit and no doggie bags! I can proudly say, we took our whole 2 hours…
Isn’t this fun? It actually takes awhile for everything to cook. They come with a tongs and lift out the hot, grill-plate when it gets dirty and then replace it with a new one. We were wondering how that all worked. I would not want to be the dishwasher in a place like this. Look at all these dishes!
So many fun Sauces and Sides they give you…a tad disappointed they didn’t have Soy Sauce. Strange I know, but I love Soy Sauce on my White Rice. I guess because that’s how we always had it growing up.
Sandy liked the “Cellophane” Noodles, me, not so much. *They are made from Mung Beans, Yam, or Potato Starches, which makes them naturally gluten-free. Some call them “Glass Noodles” because they become translucent when cooked. Personally, I couldn’t get past the texture, which is surprising, because there isn’t much I don’t like. And *Note; I’m only rating the food an 8 because I think the experience, ambience and hands on cooking was what made this place so special. The food, in general was good, but not a 9 or a 10.
Here is the aftermath! You feel so bad not finishing it all but we actually did pretty good!
I think this would be a fun place to take a group of people. There were a lot of 6 and 8 tops eating when we were there. We could tell they all knew what they were doing like they had been there before. Regulars, most likely…but hey, we got the hang of it pretty quick!
The only draw-back for me was that we smelled like the BBQ afterwards and it was a pretty strong smell. I couldn’t wait to go back to the hotel and wash my hair! But all in all, we were very happy we stumbled upon it and would definitely go back…now that we’re experts, of course (as I smile).
The Ala Moana Shopping Center there is also fantastic and would be fun to explore next time on the island.
Gen Korea BBQ House 1450 Ala Moana Blvd. Ala Moana Shopping Centre, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96814-4604