The other day I was underground at Portage and Main and decided I would make a stop for lunch at Seoul Nami which sits in the rotunda between Winnipeg Square and the Richardson building.
There has been a lot of talk recently about possibly re-opening Portage and Main to pedestrian traffic. Moving to Winnipeg in 1980, I’ve only known a closed corner. Meanwhile, the underground has been part of my life at various times. I worked at Henry Armstrong’s in Winnipeg Square and banked at the TD branch undergound at the intersection. My first regular coffee place was the Second Cup that was open there at one time. I’ve stopped at the food court at Winnipeg Square for late lunch on several occasions.
My first visit to Seoul Nami came after the lunch rush was over. I was in a hurry, so I ordered the soup and roll special. The soup was a small Udon Soup and I went with a Dynamite Roll. I chose the Dynamite Roll as it is one of my favourites. Something that’s available at pretty much every sushi restaurant. This one unfortunately was rather disappointing. First, the chef simply took one of the units out of the takeout fridge to serve me. Second, the roll kept falling apart as I tried to pick it up with the chopsticks.The flavour was just okay.
Fortunately the Udon Soup more than made up for the roll. The broth was rich, the bits of breaded meat still retained a crispiness to their coating. As well the noodles themselves were well cooked with a good chew to them.
Seoul Nami off the Menu
Having been a little disappointed with the roll I received on my first visit, I decided I would order a la carte off the menu when I returned. I started with a Miso Soup, followed by the Tuna Gommae, Gyoza Dumplings, and Volcano Special Roll. Once again, although it was made fresh, the roll was the least interesting of the items I ordered. It wasn’t bad, it just didn’t have anything special about it.
The gyoza were really good. They were evenly crisped, and the sausage and onion filling was well seasoned I also really enjoyed the Miso soup. The broth was richer than a lot of the Miso soups I’ve tried and there were lots of bits of onion in it. The Tuna Gommae salad was the highlight of this visit. I liked that both the Tuna and Avocado had been chopped into small pieces, so that when I folded them into the greens they showed up in most of the bites I took. The dressing also had a good tangyness to it.
I’d recommend visiting Seoul Nami if you get a chance. If Portage and Main opens, one never knows how long places like this will remain in business. That said, if you do go, I’d suggest steering away from the rolls and keeping to the soups, salads, and other dishes.