I’ve wanted to introduce Mr. Diner to Korean food for quite some time. The opportunity finally came when we were trying to decide where to go for dinner for a date night. We decided to hit Provo Center Street and when I suggested trying Spicy Corea, he didn’t say no. We arrived and were immediately seated. There were only two other tables with diners and only one more group arrived while we were there. It was a little early for the busy dinner crowd (about 5:00 pm), but it seems like a good place to go when the Provo crowds are swarming.
The dining room at Spicy Corea is a vibrant red, black, & white, but still feels a little like a hole-in-the-wall (one of the good ones). The service was prompt and polite. We ordered the Beef Bulgogi ($8.99), Kalbi ($12.99), & Shrimp Fried Rice ($7.99). The majority of main dishes at Spicy Corea are served with a variety of little side dishes that you find at many Korean restaurants plus a side of rice; these can also be ordered separately for $5.99.
The side dishes and rice arrived first. The rice is a nice purple sticky blend that is easy to eat with the metal chopsticks they give you. Forks are available for the chopstick-challenged, too. The side dishes included kimchi, seasoned bean sprouts, sweet sticky soybeans, & lettuce with a light dressing. I’m not a big kimchi fan, but all the dishes were good. I found the soybeans to be especially addictive and continued to pop them in my mouth through the entire meal.
The Beef Bulgogi and Kalbi arrived sizzling hot on cast iron platters, so they stayed hot. Both are great “starter” dishes if you are new to Korean food. The Bulgogi had nice tender, thin slices of beef marinated in a combination of soy sauce, onion, kiwi juice, garlic, sesame oil, and sugar (doesn’t that sound divine?) and sautéed with carrots and onions. It was sweet and flavorful. The Kalbi are beef ribs cut across the bone. They are portioned into nice pieces and are easy to pick up and eat. The Kalbi was also nicely marinated, but not quite as flavorful or sweet as the Bulgogi.
Our dish of Shrimp Fried Rice was brought on a glass plate and featured the same rice mix, nice large shrimp, onions, carrots, & peppers. It was quite different from Chinese fried rice…more moist and flavorful. We really liked it and loved that the shrimp and vegetables were large and prominent.
Spicy Corea is worth a stop when you’re in downtown Provo. We’ll definitely be back! Their Bibimbap (stone bowl with fresh vegetables & choice of protein served over rice with an egg on top) seems to be a popular choice that is worth a try, and their lunch specials served with an entrée, rice, and side dishes seem like a bargain at $5.99. Give it a try!
Entrée Price: $
Average Fork Rating: 4
Mr. Diner: 4
Mrs. Diner: 4