Nak Won is the name of a pretty famous franchise that started its venture in GTA around 2004. The Markham location was opened in 2008 and this is when the media picked up its popularity. I will admit that it was a one of my go-to places for Korean food because it’s close to where I live and offered many of the appetizers (or small dishes) that I really like. Nak Won won Top Choice Award in the GTA region for the year of 2010 proving to both the customers and the city that what we paid for is top notch. Their service has never been great but whatever, it’s another Asian restaurant right? I went back last night since my friend in Hong Kong came to visit and wow, I think the quality plummeted to the food court level. Why don’t we dive a little deeper into what took place on my unexpected Saturday night.
3255 Highway 7 East, Unit A3
Markham, ON L3R3P9
I always like starting off with this category because it’s easy to describe except maybe for this post. I’ve said this probably a hundred times but please don’t expect servers to follow-up with the dishes once you start eating. Honestly we don’t care if you like it or not, at least not enough to switch your plate for another one lols. If you like it, you will come again and if you don’t we expect your bitching. But there is one thing Asians do right and that’s cooking your food at lightning speed and taking it away at the speed of sound (so that the next customer can be served). In Nak Won they have a bell system where you can press a buzzer and it will notify the front desk which table needs assistance. I think they had good intentions when they first built this system until they realized that the buzzing DOES NOT STOP. Needless to say, if you want service you tap them on the shoulder or wave your arms nonstop…like so:
(PUT YOUR HANDS UP, PUPU PUT YOUR HANDS UP) lols.
But yesterday was just horrible. They are ALWAYS short-staffed seriously and nobody bothered to fill our tea. In Chinese standards, you flip open the cap to let servers know that “hey i’m dehydrated and i need you to refill this shit.” Anyhow I was so disappointed in their service.
It honestly tasted okay in the past but today I was like “WTF”. In Korean restaurants, you always start off your meal with side dishes (smaller than appetizers) and Nak Won is KNOWN for filling you up before the main dish comes. My parents love coming here because their side dishes actually taste good and you can count at least 6 different varieties. By the way, don’t be shy because you can refill these babies at the end. But wow the dishes were horrible, my favourite seaweed dish was tasteless and the beans was salty and not sweet. The only thing that was still edible was the sweet potatoes (looks slimy but it’s actually alright). Most of the soup entrees come with rice and portions are adequate for the average adult. I actually couldn’t finish my dish because the meat was just too filling. I ordered the Gamjatang which is arguably the most popular Korean dish in their store, and possibly in Toronto. It’s basically stewed pork bone in potato soup but be warned that the soup is mildly spicy and looks volcano hot red lols. Now the soup base is pretty good (the right amount of salt, and right amount of spiciness), however the pork was just omg bad. I didn’t even finish a single one of them, had 2 bites and went bleh. I asked around the table and everyone felt their dishes were pretty “meh”, standard shit but definitely less than what we had expected of Nak Won’s standards.
My rating: 6.5/10
What it usually deserves: 7.8/10
Honestly this restaurant could do a lot better. The entrees are usually priced at less than $11/dish and service is much more tolerable when you go at lunch time. My biggest complaint is that on weekends, YOU GOTTA BE STAFFED PROPERLY. It’s not like the restaurant has only started but with almost 10 years of experience, how can the quality plummet to this stage on a regular Saturday? I’m sorry that’s just ignorance, laziness, and incompetence. If your food is usually pretty good on a weekday, you can’t show yourself as a lazy ass over the weekends. It’s utter disappointment. Anyhow please just forget about this restaurant, the competition is so high nowadays and you can afford to pay $1-2 extra for better service and better food.