Fusion food is very popular here in South Korea, and it can produce some very interesting dishes for the palate as chefs and restaurants blend cuisine from other cultures with many of the local tastes that are favorites for Koreans.
That being said, it’s always very exciting to try something new that is as faithful to the traditional cuisine as possible. High Five Diner in Changwon, South Korea is just such a restaurant that adheres to the cuisine from its location, in this the United States.
Located just a few doors down from Todos, the Mexican restaurant I had previously visited, High Five Diner is decorated to resemble a 1950s style restaurant, and it has a number of very intesting pieces of memorabilia, and other adornments that you wouldn’t find in most eateries in South Korea.
For example, this interesting straw holder is something I have never seen before in Korea!
High Five has booth seating that I have seen in many period pieces movies set in the 1950s, and even the stool seating along the counter that is very common, or was, in the US.
Sitting down, I took a look at the menu, and was instantly struggling about what to eat. There were so many interesting options, from burgers to sandwiches, and even some pasta. Two things did catch my eye though, and in the end, I decided to order a Bacon Jam Hamburger, and Chicken and Waffles.
After placing the order, the waiter brought a metal basket with all sorts of condiments including barbecue sauce, ketchup, and hot sauce.
Looking around while waiting, I could see a number of other interesting posters and trinkets that the owners have carefully decorated High Five Diner with. A lot of them looked very unique and unusual to me! The in-house stereo was also playing a steady stream of 1950s and 1960s hits, which really helped to reinforce the feel of it being an old-school diner from the US.
After enjoying a number of songs, my order arrived and it was time to dig in.
The Bacon Jam Burger arrived first, and I had ordered it with some French fries and a coke.
The burger looked great, and the bun looked soft. The bacon and onion jam was copious, so much so that at first it was hard to even see the burger patty!
I cut the burger in half to get a good cross section, and sure enough there was some beef!
Biting in, the burger tasted great! The bacon and onion jam was very savory and sweet, and the onions were wonderfully caramelized. The beef tasted fresh and was juicy with just the right amount of grease and fat in the mixture to make it delicious! The bun was also very fresh and soft, but did not disintegrate under the toppings.
The French fries were cooked very well, and had a nice crispy exterior and a fluffy soft interior. They were seasoned with salt and parsley, and came with a Thousand Islands dressing dipping sauce with seems to be popular these days in many burger spots in South Korea.
The Chicken and Waffles arrived while I was eating the Bacon Jam Burger, and it looked very impressive!
With a thick, meaty, boneless piece of chicken sat on top of a golden waffle, I was dying to dig in!
The Chicken and Waffles also came with some maple syrup, and so I made sure to pour lots on the waffle before I started enjoying the dish.
The chicken was breaded and coated with a unique mixture of spices, and topped with little pieces of what looked like sea salt. I can’t really describe the breading, but can say that it was delicious!
The crispy exterior of the chicken was so tasty, and inside was juicy and flavorful meat.
The waffle underneath was very tasty, with no overwhelming flour taste. When doused in maple syrup, it was delicious as well.
However the real magic came when I put some waffle and chicken together in the same bite! The mixture of the salty, crispy, chicken, and the sweet and soft maple syrup-drenched waffle was out of this world!
It was with great regret that I finished off the Chicken and Waffles, and left High Five Diner.
Both of the dishes I had were outstanding, but the Chicken and Waffles was just a bit above the Bacon Jam Burger.
I have to say that my trip to High Five Diner was great, and I am very impressed with all the interesting places in Changwon. If you visit there, you should have no problem finding something delicious to eat, the only problem is which one to choose!