Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Gamjatang Pork Bone Soup. Ka Chi. Dundas St. West. Toronto

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

I wasn't going to have another gamjatang or Korean style pork bone soup today. I had gamjatang at ten different places in Toronto already and it is time I try other food here 😂 Furthermore, my current stay in Toronto is coming to an end soon 😂

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

I've past this spot along Dundas St. West many times before but this was the first time I noticed this sign, making the audacious claim that this is "Toronto's Most Famous Pork Bone Stew".

Now, this is "hogtown" Toronto - a city historically renowned for it's quality hogs. It is also a city with many Korean eateries from fine dining restaurants to authentic ajumma (auntie) run hole-in-the-wall shops. Many have gamjatang as the top seller in their menu - Torontonians love their hogs 🐖 The quality of Ontario pork and the easy availability of specialised gamjatang ingredients like perilla seeds make Toronto gamjatang so delicious.

So, I am curious to check Ka Chi's claim that it is the most famous gamjatang in Toronto. The day's plans just had to be rescheduled for this 😄

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

Ka Chi is a basement level shop which could be why I missed it when I past here many times at Dundas St. West at the fringe of Toronto's Old Chinatown.

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

Inside Ka Chi, it is well appointed for a casual eatery. Spacious, bright and clean, it even has chandeliers 😄

The friendly young staff are earnest and enthusiastic. They welcome and engage you warmly the moment you step into Ka Chi.

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

Ka Chi's gamjatang comes piping hot with the usual complement of banchan or side dishes. The banchan portions are relatively modest. But, I am sure we could ask for top ups, though I did not put that to the test as there was enough food for me already 😄

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

Ka Chi's gamjatang is among the more loaded ones that I have tried - it has cabbage, bean sprouts, potatoes and even a wedge of lime (just missing a sprinkle of toasted perilla seeds).

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

At Ka Chi, customers can have their gamjatang non spicy, spicy or extra spicy. Of course, I asked for extra spicy 😄

The orangey hued soup tasted a nice balance of mildly sweet, savoury and spicy flavours. The sweetness came from Canadian potatoes, the gentle homely kind of sweetness. The savouriness from fermented bean paste and spiciness from chili paste and flakes. Ka Chi's "extra spicy" is just mildly hot for me (don't take my word on this - we chew raw chili peppers from 2 years old in Southeast Asia 😄 ).

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

Lots of meat attached to the four pieces of spine bones in the stone bowl. The meat was done perfectly. Fall-off-the-bone tender, juicy and just nicely pink (not boiled to a fibrous, ghostly white). The natural porky sweetness adds deliciously to the sweet-savoury-spicy soup.

The wedge of lime adds a nice zest to the dish - I like the little twist 😄 

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

The spine bones separate easily at the joints, so it is easy to get at the soft tissues, cartilage and meat wedged deep in the crevices.

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

👉 Back to the claim that they are the "Most Famous Pork Bone Stew in Toronto" - indeed, Ka Chi serves a very good gamjatang. Textures and flavours from meat to vegetables and soup are just right. Portion size is comparable with any. Service is attentive and warm. Prices are at a slight premium (CDN9.95 before tax and tip) over ajumma eateries but it is worth it, given the more upscale decor and convenient city core location.

Gamjatang-Pork-Bone-Soup-Ka-Chi-Dundas-St.-West-Toronto

Restaurant name: Ka Chi Korean Restaurant
Address: 414 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M5T 1G6 (basement level)
GPS43°39'13.2"N 79°23'41.8"W | 43.653675, -79.394941
Tel416-598-3222
Hours: 10:30am to 10:30pm

Non Halal

Date: 24 Apr 2017

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