Jang YEG is the newest modern Korean-Japanese restaurant located in the heart of Downtown Edmonton on Jasper Ave. Chef Jamie Jang opened the restaurant with more than 15 years of experience in creating dishes from all over the world. From Korea to Australia and now to Canada. He now hopes to introduce Edmontonians to his unique blend of flavours.
Hearing this, I was a little skeptical about the whole Modern/Western/Korean/Japanese/Fusion mumbo jumbo. I’m more of a “just stick to one thing and be really good at it,” kinda gal.
Disclaimer: I was invited to Jang during their Media Night to preview a few of their items. Our meal was compensated but all thoughts and opinions are my own.
To start off, I was taken by surprise that everyone was at a communal table instead of having the opportunity to order off the menu on their own. I asked to sit separately than another fellow Instagrammer since introverted me wasn’t prepared to socialize that night (social anxiety problems – no hard feelings!) I was told some of my dishes will be smaller than the regular portions due to this.
We started off with the apple kimchi. It was light, sweet, and soft compared to your traditional kimchi made with cabbage. I wasn’t a fan of this since I don’t particularly like mealy apples. I only eat apples that are crunchy and crisp!
This was where I could see the Korean-Japanese fusion coming in. The fresh sashimi is dressed with a sweet Korean chili vinaigrette, and sits on a bed of avocados at the bottom. A nice mix of flavours but the sauce was a tad too sweet for me.
This beautiful plate is the kimchi croquette. Inside there is sweet potato mash, pan-fried kimchi, grana parmigano, and served with shichimi aioli. As great as this looked, however, it didn’t match up to how it tasted. I got lost with all the different flavours and it just ended up tasting like a deep fried sweet potato. Great texture but nothing amazing.
Jang’s sizzling hot ika showcases Chef Jang’s creation of Asian and Western cuisines. It features calamari tossed in Korean chili pesto, topped with a poached egg, and drizzled with an olive oil emulsion.
Unfortunately, I was also confused at what this was supposed to be. The sweet caramelized onions with the sweet potato mash and sweet Korean chili pesto just threw me off at how sweet this dish was.
This kimchi dome ($19) contains pork loin simmered in kimchi tomato sauce and is served with tofu, naan, and rice. I was initially surprised at how it came out with naan bread in a dome form. What’s the point? Who knows. Nonetheless, the naan bread was the best part before it became soggy. The pork loin was tender but there were exactly only 2 pieces in our entire bowl… I’m hoping this is due to having to sit at a separate table. I also found myself digging for more soup than kimchi.
Okay, the extra crispy beer-battered KFC is the winner of my meal. To be more specific, their taro fries were the highlights. I’m a HUGE fan of taro fries – I used to get them all the time from Quickly’s in the Southside before the brand changed to JusFruit and I can’t seem to find them anywhere now.
The fried chicken was moist yet extremely crispy. It reminded me of Coco’s Fried Chicken! They even used a similar dipping sauce. It’s well-priced at $19 for double the portion of the photo – we only got half the portion since we were sitting at a separate table than everyone else. I’ve been told the regular size would be double the size of mine!
Although the chicken was good, the salad was overpowered by a heavy mustard dressing which just didn’t compliment the meal. I suggested a more light and citric salad for the future.
Jang’s Gogi Platter $55
My last dish was Jang’s Gogi Platter containing teriyaki ribeye with kimchi butter, galbi, pork belly, and spicy pork shoulder.
This would’ve been the favourite part of my meal but we were too full to eat it. We asked to pack it up and they gave it to another guest by accident so I can’t give a full in-depth review… All I can say is, the ribeye was yummy and tender! Love the concept of having 4 different types of meat. It’s quite expensive for $55 though (add rice +$3 per bowl).
Sweets by dia to end our night. Thank you Jang for the hospitality.
Overall, it seems to me that Jang is trying a little too hard to set themselves apart from other restaurants. Huge props to them for taking the risk to try new things though. They have so much potential! If you’re looking for an Asian fusion restaurant that’s different from the ones we already have in Edmonton, why not give Jang a try?