In a corner of Melbourne not particularly known for its culinary diversity, Ondo serves underrepresented Korean dishes. Co-owners Levi Eun, Crush Yang, Ryan Kim and Andy Park opened the light-filled, split-level cafe in 2022, and then brought their refined Korean fare to the city at a second outpost the next year.
The traditional Korean meal typically features these banchan, bap (rice), guk (soup), gochujang (a red-chili paste) and jjigae (stew). Here, you can add banchan to Korean dishes like yukhoe (raw meat) bibimbap and makguksu (buckwheat noodle salad).
Eun’s banchan showcase seasonal ingredients through rotating options such as pickled zucchini, a fiery cured squid, house-made kimchi, or a savoury egg roll.
Ondo’s drinks list celebrates specialty Korean options that can be hard to find in Australia. Imported ingredients such as roasted black sesame and Korean date jam are blended with milk and cream to make subtly sweet alternatives to your go-to coffee order. For something different, try Eun’s take on the chilled sikhye (fermented malt and rice punch) made with butternut squash. It’s a refreshing option after a warming feed.
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