FOR Going Places, I usually write about my experiences at coffee shops or restaurants in the city or other places I visit. However, this time, I tried something new that I am excited to share.

I was walking back home around the middle of the night the other day. I happened to pass through the Pryce Business Park.

While I am quite familiar with the establishments in the area. It had been there for quite a while now but it was the first time I noticed the Gangnam Big Mart, a 24-hour Korean food and convenience store.

I took a quick look at what they have to offer and got curious about their ready-to-eat (RTE) offerings. I told myself I will be back here on a weekend to try some of the RTEs they have to offer.

I woke early on Saturday morning just to have breakfast at the Gangnam Big Mart. There was barely any customer when I dropped by. This allowed me to take a closer look at the restaurant.

There is one corner of the mart where you can dine-in the RTE you bought. In the dining corner, you can also find a microwave and electric airpot that you will use to heat the food you bought.

The mart has a handful of Korean food, condiments, sweets, and beverages that you can choose from. As I mentioned earlier, what caught my interest were the Korean RTEs, which looked invitingly delicious on their packaging.

For my breakfast, I had the CJ Curry Rice Bowl (P165), the Ottogi Teriyaki Chicken (P99), and Acafela Cold Brew (P65). I also bought mineral water. I wanted to go for the Korean options but was not feeling adventurous early in the morning.

Their system here is self-service but since I was the only customer, the staff was kind enough to offer to assist me.

It was funny to see the food after it was heated in the microwave. It was an “Expectation vs. Reality” situation. The food looked different from the packaging and was not that appetizing to look at.

The funniest or oddest of the two RTEs I had was the Chicken Teriyaki. The photo on the box looked like it was coated slices of chicken breast or meatballs with teriyaki sauce. But lo and behold, it was chicken nuggets in the shape of chicken drum sticks with teriyaki sauce. Despite not looking very appetizing, it was pretty good. The sauce was sweet and the chicken nuggets were quite tasty.

The Curry Rice Bowl was the least appetizing to look at. However, it tasted better than it looks.

The Acafela Cold Brew was just okay but was enough to satisfy my need for coffee in the morning. The local cold brews in the city are way better.

I had a different and interesting experience with the Korean RTEs. However, I do find it to be quite expensive, which is expected considering that these are imported products. The quality of the food was pretty good for an RTE that traveled miles to get to Davao City.