History and Background:
Meal courtesy of Cah Chi
Post written by Amy K, edited and published by Steph
Founded in 1993, Cah-chi is one of the oldest Korean restaurants in London, having moved from Swiss Cottage to more south of the river and into its Korea hub Raynes Park. With two branches, the one we visited in Earlsfield, Cah-chi considers itself as one of the most authentic Korean restaurants in town, a restaurant visited by many locals and Koreans alike.
Cahchi means ‘Magpie’ in Korean, which is considered a bird of good luck, connotating ‘coming a new person or precious guests’.
Having not explored Earlsfield before, it was close to the train station and roughly 10 minutes from Waterloo. As you walk in, the decor was modern and the wooden furniture made the restaurant quite homely. It gave off a very clean feel in comparison to other places. The manager was very friendly and showed us to our table.
Shortly after ordering our teas, we were served 9 side dishes. These included 3 different kinds of Kimchi, which were the original spicy picked chinese cabbage, cucumber and radish. We also had soy beans that were caramelised in soy sauce and sake, that were surprisingly really yummy and addictive. As these were small, our chopstick skills were put to the test! Other dishes included boiled egg in soy sauce that was really aromatic, and somewhat nostalgic, reminiscent of home cooking, and steamed vegetables.
Next our starters arrived, and the “Haemul-pajeon” which was a seafood and spring onion pancake was nice and crispy with a good amount of both egg batter mixed with seafood and vegetables. This was served with soy sauce and rice vinegar dip.
Steph: I thought the Haemul Pajeon was slightly over fried – it was crispy but albeit a bit too oily for my liking.
The pork and vegetables was a safe choice as these were like small bites of goodness. The “Kkanpunggi” which is deep fried chicken in garlic and honey sauce came in bigger chunks compared to other korean restaurants, and was not too sweet. the “Dak-koji” is also a very popular dish in Korea, of rice cake, fish cake and vegetables simmered in spicy sauce. This also had some noodles within, but was quite a spicy dish. So I would recommend this if you like your spice.
Following came our main where we had the table BBQ that was set up by our waiter and cooked in front of us. We had Dolji Bulgogi – thinly sliced spicy pork and bulgogi – thinly sliced sirloin steak which was marinated in Cah chi sauce, also onions and mushrooms. Both were flavoured very well and was even better when wrapped in lettuce, spring onions and umani soy bean paste.
Another favourite was the dolsot-bimbimbap which consisted of rice, mixed vegetable, egg and strips of raw beef that are contained in a hot stone bowl. We were asked how much hot sauce before the waiter mixed everything up whilst still cooking.
The ‘Doinjan Jigae’ a rich soybean paste stew with tofu, seafood and vegetables. This lacked some flavour, as it wasn’t a strong soup, but had a lot of seafood condiments inside.
After having such a satisfying meal, we ordered ice cream to complete the dinner. however, only had room for ice cream so we ordered the black sesame, green tea and yuzu.
The price: ££