Tastebuds: Koi Fusion worth the extra dollars

By Conor Bergin, Editor-in-Chief

I am walking down bustling Division street on a Saturday evening; it’s one of the first days of beautiful sunshine Portland has seen all year. After weeks of rain, Portlanders are taking in their reward. The street is jumping–bikers and pedestrians flooding the scene. As I walk, the loud noise and chatter engulfs me from the numerous bars I walk by. Between two bars, hectic with Final Four basketball anticipation, the noise quiets for a moment. That is when I come to my destination: Koi Fusion.

Koi Fusion–a Korean barbecue joint that fuses Korean cuisine with other classic food styles such as Mexican–has become a staple in my restaurant repertoire. Originally a food cart, but now a successful eatery with multiple stationary locations in the Portland area, Koi Fusion is unique.

The atmosphere is classic Portland. The two workers behind the counter sport flat bill caps, man buns, and thick beards, and the reggae rock soundtrack playing sends off chill vibes. Seating is spacious and the windows are huge, allowing for the spring sunlight to flood the tables.

I walk up to the counter to order. The wait is not long, but that in no way means the food is bad. On the menu, you see traditional menu items such as tacos, quesadillas, cheesesteaks, sliders, hot dogs, sliders and Reubens, but they are given a Korean twist. I order my go-to item, which is the burrito with Bulgogi beef and spicy sauce. I get it almost every time and am never disappointed.

Again, when my food comes, I am not disappointed. My only negative about the restaurant is the food is a bit pricy. The burrito costs $8.50 and if you can I even recommend paying the extra $2 for extra beef. Still, the burrito is thick and loaded with protein, Korean rice, and veggies, so you get the bang for your buck. The Bulgogi beef is juicy and flavorful. The pico de gallo, bean sprouts, and cucumber makes you feel like you are eating the freshest of spring rolls. Plus, the loaded veggies makes you feel a little better about yourself for eating a massive burrito. Combine all of those ingredients with Koi Fusion’s spicy sauce, and the taste packs an exquisite punch. This food critic gives the eatery a 10/10, perfect for takeout.

So if you’re looking for a new off-campus lunch spot Koi Fusion on Division is the place for you. You can easily make it there and back to Cleveland before third period if you hustle. If the pricing is an issue, I recommend Koi Fusion’s $5 nachos. Or just treat yourself once a month to a really good lunch.