If you’re looking for a quick and cheap meal, you really can’t beat Korean food. I’ve dropped by Ka Chi’s Chinatown location twice and have left stuffed after spending less than $10 per person.
Ka Chi actually has two Chinatown locations and a third location in the Bloor/Christie Koreatown. This post is based on the location on St. Andrew Street, just tucked off of Spadina. Strangely, their other Chinatown location is only a few blocks away on Dundas, just east of Spadina.
Like most other Korean restaurants, Ka Chi is pretty no-frills. The space is relatively clean and the food is served quickly.
They provided us with the usual Banchan dishes – kimchi, tofu, beansprouts, potatoes, japchae and eggplant. They were all pretty standard but I particularly enjoyed the japchae (glass noodles). I just wish they came before our entrees arrived to satisfy our hungry stomachs. Unfortunately they arrived at the same time as our entrees.
Rice cakes are a must-order for us at Korean restaurants. On our first visit, we ordered the Stir Fried Rice Cakes with Bul Go Gi – with vegetables, fish cakes and beef ($7.95). I was afraid this dish would be a little bland given that it was missing the spice but it tasted pretty solid. Rather than spicy, it was a pretty sweet dish. My only complaint would be that the sauce was on the watery side and didn’t stick to the rice cakes very well.
On another visit, we ordered the same thing but spicy, the Spicy Stir Fried Rice Cakes with Bul Go Gi ($7.95). While I enjoyed the non-spicy version, the spicy rice cakes are definitely the way to go. The sauce was spicy with a little bit of sweetness to it. Tasted great, even the next day.
On a cold day, there’s nothing like a bowl of Kam Ja Tang – pork bone soup stew with vegetables ($6.95). At Ka Chi, you have the option of getting this not spicy, mild, regular spicy and extra spicy. We decided on the “regular spicy” which I didn’t find very spicy at all. Perhaps I’ll have to opt for the “extra spicy”, next time.
The pork bone soup consisted of 3 large pieces of meaty pork bones and was topped with a generous portion of bean sprouts. While it was a solid pork bone soup, it paled in comparison to the one at the Owl.
The last dish we tried was the Seafood Pancake – Korean pancake with seafood and vegetables ($6.50). When it arrived, I noticed that it wasn’t very evenly fried as one half of it was significantly darker than the other. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the pancake. It contained pieces of fish, squid and thin slices of onion. The pancake was a lot thinner than the ones I’ve had at other places, not that it was a bad thing. Still, the best seafood pancake I’ve had is at Nak Won (at Yonge and Finch) but it’ll cost you twice as much.
Overall, I’ve had two positive experiences at Ka Chi. If you’re looking to fill your stomach with a satisfying meal on the cheap, Ka Chi is worth checking out. Cheap, quick and delicious!
At a glance:
• 2 locations in Chinatown and one in Koreatown (Bloor/Christie)
• Serving up Korean food with most items under $10
• No-frills restaurant but it’s quick, cheap and delicious
Ratings (out of 5):
• Food: 4 stars
• Service: 2 stars
• Atmosphere: 2 stars