Last night’s food adventure took us to Barrio Coreano, a fusion taco place in Koreatown by the owners of Playa Cabana. It was not difficult to find as you could see the flashy inside which stood out from the mom and pop Korean restaurants that surrounded it. The décor was in colourful and bright. Lights flashed. The music was loud but it wasn’t difficult to have a conversation. We were seated instantly. The place went a lot deeper than most places in the area.
The menus were written on large chalkboards on the wall. We had to stand up to read them, but it wasn’t that awkward. I liked the informal feel of the atmosphere. It was very inviting and everybody seemed to be enjoying their time. Our waiter took her time to welcome us and get us acquainted with the famous Playa Cabana hot sauces. Food was made fresh and to order so everything didn’t come together, but that was okay because it gave us breaks to recover.
As a starter, I ordered the Salmon Ceviche ($9). I thought it would come in a dinky little glass to be eaten with a spoon. That’s how much ceviche you usually get for that price at other place. I was surprised when we got a bowl of ceviche with tortilla chips. They are very generous with the portions. The ceviche was fresh, and it wasn’t fishy at all. Even Nash (who doesn’t normally like Salmon) was enjoying the dish.
I had a Soju Sangria ($9) to sip on. Soju is plum wine and it was mixed with unknown fruits. A starfruit sat on top as a decoration. It was sweet but just what I needed on a Friday night.
Two of Nash’s tacos came first. One of them was the Chihuahua and Tofu Taco ($5). Before our waiter explained it as a cheese from the province of Chihuahua, I actually thought they might have put the scrawny dog on the menu. The cheese had an interesting taste. It was a sort of like blue cheese, strong at first, but without the after taste. I liked it.
The other taco was the Korean beef taco ($5). The beef was marinated in Kalbi sauce to give it the Korean twist.
I was already getting full on the ceviche and bites of Nash’s tacos when my two tacos came. I always make a habit of trying fish tacos everywhere so I ordered the Yuzu Tuna ($5) and Chipotle Kambungki Chicken. The fish was nicely cooked and topped with a slaw that also had kimchi. I really enjoyed the Chipotle Chicken taco.
The chicken was battered (but not heavily) and flavoured sweet chili sauce. There was also jalapenos, radish and onions which made a crunchy and delicious taco.
Nash’s third taco was a Grilled Octopus Taco ($5). It was served with wasabi salsa which I thought would be empowering but totally wasn’t. The octopus was nicely cooked and not chewey at all.
We ordered a lot of food, but next time we know that it is unnecessary. The food is very well-priced and worth every cent. With delicious places like this in Toronto, I don’t know why anybody would want to wait 2 hours to get into Grand Electric. The service at Barrio Coreano was friendly and pleasant, food was exquisite and we got our money’s worth in portions. I’m already planning my next visit back with friends!