Mozzarella and Ribs: A Match Made in Heaven at James Cheese Myanmar
By Lwin Mar Htun 24 December 2019
Are you a fan of Korean cuisine? If so, here’s some good news: James Cheese Back Ribs has arrived all the way from South Korea to open its first Yangon outlet purveying its specialty: high-quality grilled Korean back ribs smothered in melted mozzarella cheese.
Located on Sayar San Road near Pearl Condo, the restaurant opened in the middle of this year and has already become popular with food lovers for its signature Pork Ribs with Cheese.
We went there for lunch at around 12 p.m. and the restaurant was quiet. It’s a spacious venue, and all the tables have grill hotplates. Maybe to reflect the “cheese” theme, all the seating is yellow. The restaurant is modern and clean and gives off a relaxed vibe.
The Pork Ribs with Cheese comes in two sizes—small and large—and you can indicate your preferred level of spiciness, but in truth none of the dishes is very hot. We chose a small set (21,000 kyats — about US$14) and Kimchi Soup (6,500 kyats).
All dishes are cooked to order, so there is a short wait.
The soup arrived first. It contained Chinese cabbage, enoki mushrooms (a long, thin, white mushroom), and small pieces of chicken topped with bean curd tofu.
Later, staff brought a large black tray with four big pieces of Korean back ribs, sweet corn, cheese macaroni pasta, tteokbokki (stir-fried rice cakes), steamed eggs and bulgogi sauce. And it’s served with their homemade kimchi.
Once it arrived at the table, the presentation of the foods, and the smell of the grilled pork ribs and mozzarella made me even hungrier.
Then, the staff put the tray on the hotplate and switched it on; the cheese started to melt, the eggs began to steam, and before long the meal was ready.
When the cheese had melted, the staff wrapped each grilled pork rib in strips of mozzarella. The sight and aroma of the scene left my mouth watering.
The staff was friendly, helpful and really patient, waiting not far from the table and ready to serve.
The restaurant provides gloves—and yes, it’s better to grab the big pork ribs with your hands. They used a good quality mozzarella and the smell was delectable. After the first bite, I wanted more. The meat was really tender and the cheese enhanced the flavor. I’m not a cheese person but I loved this dish; the meat is perfectly complemented by the bulgogi sauce.
The restaurant owner explained, “We steam the ribs first. Then, when the order comes we grill it fresh. That’s why the pork ribs are so tender.”
I also loved the cheese macaroni pasta and tteokbokki. The problem is that all the dishes are cheesy, and I could only eat two pork ribs—I actually wanted more but my stomach just couldn’t.
On a full stomach, the spicy, sour kimchi soup really went down well. And I liked the taste of their homemade kimchi, too.
James Cheese Myanmar’s menu is wide-ranging, and includes other popular Korean dishes, though they’re a bit pricey, starting at 5,000 kyats.
The reasonably priced drinks menu includes smoothies, cocktails, shots, wine and beer.
The restaurant has outside seating, which might be a good choice for a dinner or evening with friends. So, if you’re a cheese person or looking to experience high-quality pork ribs, you don’t need to fly to Korea—just swing by James Cheese Myanmar.
The restaurant is open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
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