I should put out there that my darling Charlotte has the most excellent taste in restaurants, among other things, and this suggestion of hers was no exception. In a city suffused with bars serving food and tinnitus, actual restaurants are a rarity. This is one such place. Spacious, not too loud, with no silly music pounding in your ears, Topokki was a winner for me.
In keeping with her excellent taste, Charlotte ordered the star dish of the evening, the beef noodles. The beef was enhanced with soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, garlic, pepper among other secret ingredients. The sum of this chewy beef with the fondant noodles and crunchy bean sprouts was hearty and scrumptious. I will most assuredly be ordering these on our next visit.
My dish was good but did not reach the snow capped summit heights of Charlotte’s. This also contained beef, but in the bulgogi style, which is a gui (grilled dish) made of thin, marinated slices of meat, most commonly beef, grilled on a barbecue or on a stove-top griddle. Sirloin, rib-eye and brisket are used for this dish. I loved this in the ramen. There were pieces of tofu floating around along with what the restaurant describes as fried egg. Regrettably I am not as good a food critic as I appear so I was unable to catalogue the swirling member of my stew, below. Overall, however, this was a potent and completely flavourful dish which quite floored me.
Our drinks consisted of crushed pear juice (very specific 238ml) and Korean citron tea. The latter was exactly the kind of drink I love. I have been a bit lemon obsessed over the last few months. This drink is the most delicious, hearty, warm, citrusy sweet drink. It is the sort of beverage which warms the soul.
Overall I must say this is one of the better economic restaurants I have visited in Birmingham. I am amazed at the consistency in Charlotte’s choices and look forward to her next pick.