Manna Korean Restaurant

You know how you’re ravenous sometimes but don’t want the oily confines of a hawker center nor the uppitiness of a posh restaurant; but just want somewhere comfy with good food?

This hole-in-the-wall Korean restaurant that we chanced upon one weekday lunch was just that. An unpretentious restaurant nestled in a row of shops, we were glad that there was a sheet of paper between the clear glass pane, so curious onlookers couldn’t peer at our kimchi.

The vibe is relaxed and a bit old-world. They have a la carte dishes, but we picked the lunch special with a choice of beef, pork or chicken. We picked the beef and the servers delivered the Korean barbecue set from a pushcart. The beef arrived sizzling on a hot plate with other side dishes—patties, spicy bean sprouts, the ubiquitous kimchi, long beans with egg, spicy potato slices, rice, soup and a jug of cold tea.

It was a lovely, authentic, heartwarming and filling meal. The beef was tasty and sweet, the kimchi crunchily spicy and all the side dishes complemented one another well. Just when we were full, the server whipped out slices of watermelon for us.

These dishes are the usual Korean ones but we loved the great value, brisk service and the ambiance. With a meal like that, you can return to the office with renewed vigor.