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born and bred

Type: Fine Dining Korean BBQ

Good for: Saying you went to a MIchelin restaurant

Worth it?

Food

Atmosphere

Service

The allure of Michelin-starred restaurants is undeniable. The prestigious Michelin Guide has long been a beacon of culinary excellence, and its recommendations are often seen as the ultimate accolade in the world of gastronomy. Recently, I had the opportunity to dine at Born & Bred, a restaurant that has been repeatedly featured on the list of Best Restaurants in Korea and comes with a Michelin recommendation.

Born & Bred is renowned for its Korean beef experience, a culinary journey that I embarked on with two clients who were eager to sample the Michelin-endorsed fare. The restaurant’s ambiance was buzzing with youthful energy, albeit a bit chaotic. The young wait staff seemed to be in a state of confusion, waiting for instructions rather than taking the initiative. This was a surprising sight in a restaurant of such high repute.

The language barrier added another layer of complexity to the experience. Despite my attempts to communicate in Korean, the staff seemed puzzled and had to bring in an English-speaking server. This was a minor hiccup, but it did make me question the level of service in a Michelin-recommended establishment.

The wine service was another area that left room for improvement. We were served a bottle of Vindoro, Primitivo, Di Manduria, San Marzano – a delightful choice. However, after pouring the wine into delicate glasses, the staff whisked away the bottle, leaving us to flag down a server each time we needed a refill. This was not the seamless service one would expect from a restaurant of this caliber.

The food, while enjoyable, did not live up to the fine dining standards. The quality of the beef and banchan was comparable to my regular spot in Majang Market, but at double the price. It made me wonder if the restaurant’s Michelin recommendation was more a result of the Omakase gimmick upstairs rather than the quality of the food and service.

In conclusion, Born & Bred seems to have fallen into the trap of elevating the price without a corresponding increase in quality or service. The experience was reminiscent of a casual dining chain rather than a Michelin-recommended restaurant. Unless you’re keen on flaunting your spending power, I would recommend exploring the butcher restaurants in Majang Market for a more authentic and value-for-money Korean beef experience.

Despite the shortcomings, my quest for culinary excellence continues. After all, food is not just about taste, it’s about the entire experience – the ambiance, the service, and the memories created. And sometimes, it’s the unexpected places that leave the most lasting impressions.

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