Within the vast and eclectic menu at Tweet, I recently discovered a bibimbop ($9). And although all of the dishes I've eaten here are highly recommendable, after trying this rendition of an everyday Korean dish, I'd be hard-pressed to order anything else. (I actually haven't since. This photo represents my third Tweet bibimbop eaten streetside since spring.)
The kitchen makes some departures from traditional here, but almost all are to the betterment of the dish.
Many bibimbops are rice-focused, with a small scattering of thinly cut cold vegetables atop. But here you have to do some digging to even find the rice (which is short-grain brown instead of traditional white), obscured as it is by heaps of fresh produce. The usual julienned carrots, radish, cucumbers, and bean sprouts are joined by a few delicious new additions, including piping hot blanched broccoli and spinach. (There are also some tomatoes thrown in, but they don't work for me.)
As you work your way slowly into the massive bowl, the best part—far and away—is the kimchi. Tweet sources it from Viet Hoa Plaza just a few blocks away, and it's good stuff. It would be perfect eaten chilled and alone, but Tweet steps it up by cooking the slightly spicy fermented cabbage and burying copious amounts of it between the steaming rice and vegetables. I have long been obsessed with cooking or grilling your kimchi, which sweetens it and takes a bit of the bacterial buzzing edge off. It makes this messy bowl magical.
The one major low point: you won't get any spicy, thick gochujang to spoon into the dish, despite the fact that this is a non-negotiable for bibimbop. Still, Tweet compensates for that lack by providing a plethora of other accompaniments. I've had, at various points and in different combinations: hoisin, soy sauce, Bragg's liquid aminos, sriracha and Tweet's homemade guajillo pepper sauce. In my opinion, equal parts guajillo and sriracha have the best effect.
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