Restaurant Review: Pong Lindhagen
Pong is a fairly large restaurant chain that is well-established in and around Stockholm. Recently, they opened a brand new restaurant in the Kungsholmen area of the city. I found out about the place when I googled Korean BBQ in Stockholm and it seemed like the only place that served it. I got really into Korean BBQ when I lived in Toronto and became friends with a girl from Korea who introduced me to the world of Korean BBQ. My boyfriend had never tried it and we thought it would be fun to do for our four year anniversary.
So what is Korean BBQ?
Korean BBQ is a way to cook meat, vegetables, fish and other dishes. You get a wide selection of side dishes at your table that are all-you-can-eat, you also get fresh meat and vegetables, that you cook by yourself at the table. After that, you put the freshly cooked food inside a lettuce leaf, add in some sauces, kimchi and vegetables and roll it all together in a bun (pretend that it is tacos). The lettuce neutralizes all the spicy tastes and the combination of spicy and mild is amazing in this case.
Korean BBQ at Pong Lindhagen
The restaurant is located near Hornsbergs Strand and the Subway station Stadshagen in Kungsholmen, Stockholm. I got really surprised when I arrived because it turned out to be inside a shopping center that only has a few small shops and a huge ICA Maxi (the Swedish version of Walmart). The restaurant was on the 5th floor, which is the top floor, so you won't pass by it unless you are actually planning on going to the restaurant. The location is very unstrategic because you won't see the place by accident and go there spontaneously. It also feels very American to have a large restaurant inside a shopping center which made it feel a little bit cheaper than it actually was.
The adress is Lindhagensgatan 120, 112 51 Stockholm.
I had made a reservation for Korean BBQ at this place so there were no issues to get seated. The restaurant is divided into sections depending on what you are going to eat there and the Korean BBQ section was pretty much empty when we arrived. We got seated at a nice table with a lot of space and had a nice view overlooking the buffet section of the restaurant as well as the bar.
Food style and quality
The food was really the most incredible part about this place. We went for the Korean BBQ menu, they had an opening offer at the time so it was 295 SEK instead of 395 SEK. In this offer, we got unlimited access to their buffet which had a little bit of everything. There was a lot of sushi, dumplings, noodles and stews. Of course, they also had a dessert table with soft serve ice cream, panna cotta and chocolate mousse which you could have as much as you wanted of.
Our main adventure was the Korean BBQ and that one was also all-you-can-eat. You had to pay extra if you wanted rib eye, clams or tenderloin but all the other food was included in an unlimited amount. We got a sheet of paper where we could mark all the items that we wanted and how much we wanted of each. There were so many options available that we tried at least one portion of everything. One portion of each item was 50 g and it turned out to be a lot more than we expected when the food actually showed up. The quality of the food was really great and I was pleasantly surprised by how amazing everything tasted. Needless to say, we didn't manage to finish all of our food and we sat there for about three hours just heating up food, trying out different combinations and eating it. We got so full so we didn't even want to see food afterwards.
The service and the staff at this restaurant was great. Two young Swedish guys took care of us and they came to us promptly and often to ask if we wanted refills of anything and they also introduced all the dishes and how to eat them really well. They were also vey polite and said thank you, a lot.
This restaurant is large and divided into four sections. We were in the Korean BBQ section which was almost empty but brand new and really nicely decorated with dark floors and walls that created a cozy atmosphere. We also got a view of the buffet section which looked more casual, but still new and beautifully furnished. The Chinese a la carte room was decorated in a lot of red shades, and it was located right by the entrance. The bathrooms were large, new, beautiful and smelled great. They really did not cheap out when they built this restaurant!
Final thoughts: I wouldn't go all the way to this restaurant for an Asian buffet or Chinese food, because Stockholm is full of those places, I did, however love the Korean BBQ that they served and I would definitely come back for that. From what I have seen, it is the only place in Stockholm (and probably in Sweden) that serves Korean BBQ.The only negative thing I have to say about this place is the location. The restaurant is basically located one floor above ICA Maxi inside a small shopping center that people go to because of ICA Maxi. No one is going to discover this restaurant spontaneously, which is sad because it is really good. Also, the location makes the place seem cheaper than it is. It also affected my first impression of the restaurant in a negative way.
Pros: They have a great Korean BBQ and great staff in a beautiful setting.
Cons: The location.
Would I go again: Yes, I definitely would. This restaurant is one of the best places I have tried in Stockholm.
First, we went for cocktails. I went for a Strawberry cocktail and my boyfriend went for a lemon cocktail. The cocktails were pretty average.
The lettuce and some of the sides such as kimchi, chili mayo and bean sprouts. They also had a few other really intense and spicy sauces.
The food that we spent a few hours making on the BBQ.
The Korean BBQ section of the restaurant.