When it comes to high-quality and sophisticated dining experiences, one of the best places to go to by locals and foreigners alike is the Resorts World Manila complex, home to many hotels and restaurants offering various cuisines.
A new addition to the many options you have when in the complex is Sheraton Manila's Oori, an upscale Korean restaurant serving casual and comfort dishes as well as premium meat up for grilling. The name of the restaurant literally translates to "ours", as it aims to become a gathering place for guests with its fusion of the fine and the casual dining style.
The restaurant, which seats up to 156 people, is divided into two sections. One has a live-cooking bibimbap bar and serves more of the casual Korean fare like tteokbokki and pajeon, while the other has premium grills, a bar and private dining areas, perfect for those who want to have a good Korean barbecue experience with a bigger group.
Headed by their Executive Korean Chef Kibum Park, Oori takes pride in serving dishes that are made fresh - something that every Korean cooking should always be. They even display their premium meat selection at their butchery kitchen, so guests can easily see that what they're getting is some of the best ones out there.
One of the highlights of every meal at Oori is their banchan or Korean side dishes. Here, they boast of 16 different side dishes, going on a rotation of 5 every day except for the cabbage kimchi which is a staple in every meal. According to them, their kimchi is made in-house, preserved for 5 days, an optimal amount of time to bring out its best flavors.
Here, they are also proud to serve their homemade meljorim sauce which is Chef Park's creation. It's made with anchovy and soybean paste, and is a sauce that goes well with their grilled meat.
One of the dishes that people automatically look for when it comes to Korean cuisine is Bibimbap, and here at Oori, it's served differently compared to the usual ones. The vegetables are served on the side. The dish is also served with sous vide egg, as well as their homemade chili sauce with ground beef, which gives the rice bowl the perfect mix of the sweet and the spicy flavors.
Oori offers 8 different kinds of bibimbap: Hoe (fresh sashimi), Yuk Hoe (marinated beef tartare), Yachae (vegetables), Bulgogi, Haemul (spicy marinated seafood), Dak (sweet soy marinated chicken), and Sisig.
For the ones who like their bibimbap the classic Korean way, Bulgogi Bibimbap is the one to try. This bowl has steamed rice topped with tender strips of marinated beef, seaweed, and scallions, with flavors that would instantly bring you to a homey restaurant in Seoul.
The Sisig Bibimbap, however, is a dish that's good for the adventurous ones. This dish has crispy and spicy chunks of pork and seaweed, which leads to the fusion of Filipino and Korean flavors.
While you can always try the classic Bulgogi Bibimbap, they recommend that you also get their Sisig Bibimbap, which has crispy bits of ground pork mixed into the rice and topped with seaweed.
Another dish to get alongside their bibimbap is their Dakgangjung, their sweet and spicy version of the famous Korean fried chicken. Always served fresh, expect this to be crispy on the outside but still retaining the tenderness of the chicken meat.
For the meat-lovers, the highlight of their Oori experience should most definitely be the premium barbecue. Guests can choose whether they want a platter of beef, pork, or both when ordering their set menus, which is good enough already for 2 to 3 persons. These go from P2050 to P5500 for a premium combination.
Oori's grilled menu features Australia Mulwarra Wagyu Beef, which had received marble scores of 5+ and 9+, the highest recognized scores. Aside from that, they also have Spanish-branded Duroc Pork, which also got the highest fat marbling and lean meat. The people at the restaurant that the pig has only been fed with chestnuts to create a meal that's both perfectly tender and juicy.
The staff at Oori will also be the one to grill these meats for the guests, to ensure the quality and to make sure that the meat will be cooked to perfection. The set menu comes with unlimited servings of 5 side dishes, assorted vegetables, rice, and soup.
Something that complements grilled meat in a Korean barbecue meal is a warm and hearty soup, and here at Oori, they give you a number of options to choose from: Denjang Jjigae, Beef Galbi Tang, and Suntufu Jjigae. However, one of their most recommended dishes is their Mandu Jeongol (P1400).
Mandu Jeongol, good enough for 2-3 persons, is a sour and spicy hotpot dish that has kimchi, tofu, glass noodles, pork, and kimchi mandu or Korean dumplings. It's best to enjoy it with a warm cup of rice, and in between bites of meat.
What better way to end the meal than with some good dessert? While you can always choose to try their Songpyeon Rice Cake and Homemade Ice Cream, we recommend that you get their Bingsu, a famous Korean shaved milk ice dessert. Try out their Mango Bingsu (P450), cheesecake cubes and slices of mangoes from Guimaras. A healthier option could also be the Fresh Fruits Bingsu (P450), with chunks of melon, honeydew, watermelon, and blueberries.
Oori is at Sheraton Manila, located in Resorts World Manila. The restaurant is open from 12nn to 10:30pm for the bibimbap selections, while the premium grill menu is available for lunch at 12nn to 2:30pm and dinner at 6pm to 10:30pm.