Edward Kwon's restaurant eyes families

By Kwon Mee-yoo

Yet another restaurant by star chef Edward Kwon, called The Mixed One, opened in Hannam-dong Friday, one that will mainly target families and foreigners living in the neighborhood.

Kwon said the concept for the restaurant comes from modern Californian multi-cuisine. The restaurant will serve a variety of food from the East and West and sometimes creatively combine them.

"Hannam-dong is a foreigner-concentrated area with many embassies. I hope The Mixed One will appeal to them with its reasonably-priced food", Kwon said at a press conference on the restaurant earlier this month. "I think there are no real family restaurants in Korea where a family can come together and have gourmet food in a comfortable setting. I want to provide quality food at affordable prices for families and foreigners".

Kwon was a head chef at the prestigious Burj Al Arab in Dubai and has been leading the globalization of Korean food by presenting contemporary Korean dishes at the Sydney Food Festival, Jakarta Food Festival, 2011 Singapore World Gourmet Summit and Hawaii Food and Wine Festival.

The interior of the restaurant looks neat with white tables and geometrical floral patterned chairs. As a particularly sensory concept a large screen shows what is going on inside the kitchen. On the first floor, guests can also dine at the chef's table, which is connected to the kitchen and directly served by chef with an explanation of each of the dishes.

The Mixed One serves meals presented at international food festivals by Kwon - soy braised short rib with pepper-soy glaze uses Korean traditional condiments such as "doenjang" (fermented soybean sauce) and "ganjang" (soy sauce).

Other signature items on the menu include "Tuna Pizza", composed of tuna, olives, sweet soy and cornichon mayonnaise on a corn flour tortilla; chili pork ribs with five spice salt seasoning; and peppered prawns with crispy garlic chips.

To finish off the meal, among the delectable desserts Kwon offers the distinct spicy chili chocolate mousse with pine nut praline crunch and yuzu cream. The combination is unique yet unfamiliar as the sweet, soft texture of chocolate mousse is tinged with an accent of spicy chili powder.

Customers can also create box menus with their favorite dishes.

Price ranges from 7,000 to 24,500 won for a la carte selections and 26,000 to 34,500 won for box menus.

The restaurant will also start serving brunch menus on weekends from November.

Michelin chefs coming to Seoul

Kwon has invited six chefs from Michelin-star restaurants to The Mixed One and Lab XXIV, his fine dining restaurant in Cheongdam-dong, in November to present special courses using Korean ingredients.

The chefs are Peter Rudolph, executive chef for Madera in Rosewood Sand Hill Hotel, Calif., U.S.; Gian Luigi Gerosa, culinary director of The Mira, Hong Kong; Richard Ekkebus, executive chef of Mandarin Oriental Landmark Hotel in Hong Kong; Tam Kwok Fung, executive Chinese chef at City of Dreams in Macau; Shinichiro Takagi, owner and executive chef of Zeniya; and Xavier Salomon, executive chef at Ritz Carlton in Half Moon Bay.

Proceeds will be donated to the Korean Commission for UNICEF.

Kwon said he will hold such charity events every quarter from next year. "The top chefs will come to Korea and experience Korean cuisine and culture, while Korean epicures will enjoy food by the best chefs from around the world", he said.

The Mixed One is located in Hannam-dong, near the U.N. Village and opens from 10 a.m. till midnight. For more information, call (02) 749-1423.

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