Owl of Minerva (Waterloo)

Owl of Minerva is a Korean restaurant chain that started in Toronto. I’m not a huge fan of Korean food, so I didn’t really give a second thought when I heard that Owl was opening a store in Waterloo. However, I’ve been to this restaurant 3 times since it opened already.

The most recent visit I made to Owl of Minerva was on Valentine’s Day with a couple of friends.

As customary with all Korean restaurants, we started off some banchan (side dishes). Luckily for me, they serve a type of gamja jorim (potatoes coated with a sweet corn syrup/soy sauce). The potatoes at Owl don’t use the typical sauce-mix, however, and are significantly less sticky and sweet.

For the main course, I had the seafood soon tofu ($9.99).

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The soon tofu was served hot and bubbling, so it took a while for it to cool down to a bearable temperature. Since I ordered the soup with mild broth, I found it to be a little too light and tasteless. There also wasn’t as much seafood as I would have liked, but they made up for it with tons of tofu. The soon tofu wasn’t anything special, but it definitely filled and warmed me up on a cold winter night.

During the previous times I’ve been here, I’ve tried the pork bone soup ($7.99), and bulgogi jungol (grilled beef soup).

The pork in the pork bone soup was tender, fall-off-the bone and didn’t have too much fat. However, I found the broth to have too many peppercorns, which made it difficult to eat the meat and drink the soup without chewing on peppercorns in every bite.

The bulgogi jungol was incredibly sweet, as advertised. Unfortunately, the flavour was a bit too strong for me and I didn’t particularly enjoy it.

In general, this review is slightly biased as I don’t particularly like Korean food to begin with. While cheap and filling, I never found any of their dishes to particularly stand out. However, Owl of Minerva is a refreshing new change from the other Korean restaurants in the area.

3/5

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