Japanese and Korean cuisine in the heart of Maitland
Unless you’re a local in the know, you might walk straight past Beud at The Levee in Maitland.
Its recently-renovated facade is sleek yet unassuming, but the aromas wafting from the kitchen should give away just how much of a gem this restaurant is.
Beud, a Korean and Japanese restaurant, has been a local favourite for years, and we thought it was about time we saw for ourselves what all the hype was about.
Stepping inside, the simple interiors complement the low-key exterior, but they’re full of warmth and charming touches, like the decorative black fish swimming up the counter, or the many pendant lights dangling from the ceiling.
A cosy table inside was perfect in drab weather, but when the sun is out, or on a balmy evening, a table out the back by the river would be ideal.
We stopped by at midday on a Wednesday, and while the lunch rush is a common experience for many restaurants on a weekday, I was surprised to see Beud nearly full with people dining in – not just ordering takeaway.
It’s a testament to the quality of the food at Beud. While the huge menu can seem daunting, it’s best to order a selection of dishes, so you can try as much as possible.
We tried dishes like Fried Boneless Chicken (with the spicy marinade), Japchae (Korean stir-fried glass noodles with vegetables), Teriyaki Tofu Bento Box, Korean BBQ with bulgogi beef, and vegetable Steamed Dumplings.
Each dish was bursting with flavour, from the sticky, slightly sweet teriyaki marinade on the tofu, to the heat of the fried chicken, and the tang of accompanying kimchi. It’s safe to say we were very glad when the friendly staff made sure we took home our leftovers.
There’s a decent drinks menu, featuring plenty of tea varieties (both hot and cold) – we sampled warm honey, ginger and lemon tea, as well as honey black raspberry iced tea.
Heading in for lunch? While Beud's menu is already pretty affordable, its $16 lunch specials are a cheap, filling way to get your Korean fix.
While the breadth of flavours across the dishes we ate was impressive, so too was the service by Beud’s staff. They add to the restaurant’s inviting atmosphere, always being attentive to each customer.
It might seem odd for a restaurant to specialise in both Korean and Japanese cuisine, considering the two are quite different – Korean cuisine tends to feature more meat and seasoning, whereas Japanese food favours seafood (especially raw) and less spice.
But it’s this contrast that makes dining at Beud so enjoyable. Pair your bibimbap with a side of raw salmon nigiri, or enjoy your ramen with tteokbokki. With a menu as large as Beud’s, the options for new flavour combinations are practically endless. Any excuse to keep coming back for more.