Gom ShabuShabu

RESTAURANT REVIEW

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When I was in college, my friends nicknamed me “Rand McNally” because I was known for having absolutely no sense of direction. Even though I grew up in Atlanta, I would get us lost with little effort; a ‘talent’ that has served me well as I search Atlanta for new restaurants. Yesterday’s excursion to Gwinnett with my friend, “Chowfun,” was a classic Jennifer/”Rand McNally” moment. I got us hopelessly lost. Stubborn gal that I am, however, I ignored Chowfun’s squirming protests against my alleged haphazard driving because I just knew that I was going to find something worth trying. Mere moments before capitulation, I spotted the large words “Shabu Shabu” on a sign in a small strip mall. I shouted “shabu shabu” and Chowfun replied: “Go!” Could I possibly be redeemed?


If you have been following along, you’ll know that I love shabu shabu. This restaurant is a bit different from the Japanese places I normally frequent. It is Korean-owned and the setup is unique for Atlanta. The pots (pictured above) of boiling stock (they use a veggie stock instead of water with kelp) are set inside the table and each diner is given her own. The menu is straightforward with many choices like premium beef, lamb, seafood, etc. You can also order other items like tofu, mushrooms, extra seafood, etc.


After ordering–Chowfun got the lamb and seafood combo and I got the beef with a side order of tofu–we made our way towards one of the sauce stations that are full of ingredients (like chopped garlic, cilantro, sesame oil, and ponzu sauce) where you can assemble your own concoction based on your particular tastes.


The vegetable plate is the first to arrive and is an odd combination of corn on the cob, a halved hot dog on a stick, fish cake, raw egg, yam noodles, and assorted vegetables–quite different from what I am used to, but this is Korean-inspired shabu shabu, so take it for what it is worth.


When I was in college, my friends nicknamed me “Rand McNally” because I was known for having absolutely no sense of direction. Even though I grew up in Atlanta, I would get us lost with little effort; a ‘talent’ that has served me well as I search Atlanta for new restaurants. Yesterday’s excursion to Gwinnett with my friend, “Chowfun,” was a classic Jennifer/”Rand McNally” moment. I got us hopelessly lost. Stubborn gal that I am, however, I ignored Chowfun’s squirming protests against my alleged haphazard driving because I just knew that I was going to find something worth trying. Mere moments before capitulation, I spotted the large words “Shabu Shabu” on a sign in a small strip mall. I shouted “shabu shabu” and Chowfun replied: “Go!” Could I possibly be redeemed?


If you have been following along, you’ll know that I love shabu shabu. This restaurant is a bit different from the Japanese places I normally frequent. It is Korean-owned and the setup is unique for Atlanta. The pots (pictured above) of boiling stock (they use a veggie stock instead of water with kelp) are set inside the table and each diner is given her own. The menu is straightforward with many choices like premium beef, lamb, seafood, etc. You can also order other items like tofu, mushrooms, extra seafood, etc.


After ordering–Chowfun got the lamb and seafood combo and I got the beef with a side order of tofu–we made our way towards one of the sauce stations that are full of ingredients (like chopped garlic, cilantro, sesame oil, and ponzu sauce) where you can assemble your own concoction based on your particular tastes.


The vegetable plate is the first to arrive and is an odd combination of corn on the cob, a halved hot dog on a stick, fish cake, raw egg, yam noodles, and assorted vegetables–quite different from what I am used to, but this is Korean-inspired shabu shabu, so take it for what it is worth.


On my way out, I spied spring rolls made with bulgogi at the table next to us and kicked myself for missing that menu item. The staff was very friendly and we both agreed that we would come back if we were in the area. I was redeemed.



Shabu-Shabu

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Shabu-shabu (しゃぶしゃぶ , also spelled shyabu-shyabu?) is a Japanese dish featuring thinly sliced beef boiled in water. The term is an onomatopœia, derived from the sound emitted when the ingredients are stirred in the cooking pot. The dish is related to sukiyaki in style: Both consist of thinly sliced meat and vegetables and served with dipping sauces. However, Shabu-shabu is considered to be more savory and less sweet than sukiyaki.


Shabu-shabu was introduced in Japan in the 20th century[citation needed] with the opening of the restaurant "Suehiro"[1] in Osaka, where the name was invented. Its origins are traced back to the Chinese hot pot known as instant-boiled mutton (Shuàn Yángròu). Shabu-shabu is most similar to the original Chinese version when compared to other Japanese dishes (nabemono) such as sukiyaki.[citation needed] Suehiro registered the name as a trademark in 1955. Together with sukiyaki, shabu-shabu is a common dish in tourist hot-spots, especially in Tokyo, but also in local Japanese neighborhoods (colloquially called "Little Tokyos") in countries such as the United States and Canada.


The dish was originally made with thinly sliced beef[citation needed], but some versions use pork, crab, chicken, lamb, duck, or lobster. Most often, ribeye steak is used, but less tender cuts, such as top sirloin, are also common. A more expensive meat, such as wagyū, may also be used. It is usually served with tofu and vegetables, including Chinese cabbage, chrysanthemum leaves, nori (edible seaweed), onions, carrots, shiitake mushrooms and enokitake mushrooms. In some places, udon, mochi or harusame noodles may also be served.


The dish is prepared by submerging a thin slice of meat or a piece of vegetable in a pot of boiling water or dashi (broth) made with konbu (kelp) and stirring it. Cooked meat and vegetables are usually dipped in ponzu or goma (sesame seed) sauce before eating, and served with a bowl of steamed white rice. Once the meat and vegetables have been eaten, leftover broth from the pot is customarily combined with the remaining rice, and the resulting soup is usually eaten last.


Gom Shabu Shabu: A Korean twist on traditional Japanese Cuisine

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BY: Mackenzie Stephenson


One of the newer restaurants to open in Suwanee is a place called Gom Shabu Shabu, open for a little over a month on Lawrenceville Suwanee Road. The restaurant chain originally started eight years ago in Duluth, one of the first Shabu Shabu restaurants to open. But, with many of their customers also coming from Suwanee, owners Ms. Mun and Mr. Tay Kim, along with their son Jason Kim, decided to open a location in Suwanee. Originally from Korea, their goal isto give others, including families and customers who aren’t Korean, a new experience and way to dine.


We were able to speak with Jason Kim on our visit to Gom Shabu Shabu and he told us his family moved from Queens, New York 10 years ago. His mom had previous restaurant experience in New York; she owned several sushi restaurants and a few bars. “As we stepped into this, my dad took over the kitchen aspect and ordering while my mom runs restaurant operations.” Jason said. Jason acts as General Manager; he circles the floor to make sure customers are satisfied and to see if they need any help making their food.


The name Gom Shabu Shabu comes from the dish Shabu Shabu and Jason told us “Gom” was his mother’s nickname. It means bear in Korean.


The food at Gom Shabu Shabu is a blend of Korean and Japanese styles. Shabu Shabu is originally a Japanese dish featuring thinly sliced beef boiled in water, but at Gom Shabu Shabu they have put a Korean twist on the traditional Japanese style. All of their broths and sauces are made in house and have five levels of spiciness to choose from. When asked about the most popular item on the menu, Jason said it is their premium and regular beefs along with seafood options.


gomshabuJason continued to say his favorite thing to do is cook everything fully in the broth and then add noodles at the end to eat as a soup. “You can take your time and enjoy the experience over the course of an hour.” He told us, adding that this style of dining is perfect for long lunch meetings or even dates. Regular customer Tony Hahn was there with his family and out-of-town guests. He said, “The food is exceptional because its both delicious and a very healthy way to eat. It is good for both vegetarians and and meat lovers.” Gom Shabu Shabu is a restaurant that takes great care to provide a healthy style of eating for their

customers. Everything is all natural and fresh, with over ten veggies that go into the making of the broth alone. Shabu Shabu is a meal where customers are able to cook their own food right at the table in a hot-pot. At first some people might be a little intimidated to cook their own food, but Jason says they learn to love the experience. Gom Shabu Shabu does have a “non hot-pot menu” for children in case parents are worried about the hot broth provided for each customer.


They do recommend reservations for parties of 6 or more and have a private dining room that can be reserved as well. Right now, Gom Shabu Shabu is running an alcohol special: sake is going for $1.99 for a small bottle and $3.99 for a large. If sake is something you enjoy or want to try, now would be the best time to purchase some! 


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