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Dining in Seoul


MHesse
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Closer maybe to a shabu shabu.  Very wide, and not too deep.  It was the divot that caught my eye, as there's a bunch of neat things could be done with that, as it puts one section closer to the heat.

Threr are a couple of dishes that come to mind, one is haemul-jeongol a seafood hot pot with vegetables and beef, or two maeuntang, a spicy, thick stew of fish, clams, and veggies.

But I am unsure of the actual dish you are thinking of, as I can't reacll any dishes with divots in them.

She came, she saw. She ate, she blogged.

www.maryeats.com

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Or even as a further question, has anyone any viewpoints on different regional specialties in Korea?

In Seoul, dumplings (mandu) are said to be more sophisticated, smaller, and elegant. Sollongtang, a beef bone and tripe soup, Kujolpan, a nine selection plate associated with royality, chat juk, pine nut porridge, and yakshik, glutinous rice cakes are representative of the capital's cuisine.

Other regions

Gyeonggi Province (Seoul, Incheon).

Sjujebi- soup with flour dumplings

Pyonsu- dumplings

Samgyetang- ginseng chicken soup

mu pinul kimchi- stuffed radish kimchi

Chungchongman Province. North West coast, known for being rustic, soybean paste is often used to season food (Daejeon).

doenjang jijjae- soybean paste stew

oiji- pickled cucumbers

origul chot-fremented oysters

Gangwon Province. North-East coast, famous for seafood and beaches (Sokcho).

Kamja chon- potato dumplings

totori muk- acorn jelly and mushrooms

Squid bulgogi

Jeolla Province. South-West coast, well known among gourmands. The cooking is characterized by sensible seasonings with salt and spices (Gwangju).

Chotkal- fermented seafood dishes

Jeong ju bibimbap- mixed rice with various namul

Sannakchi hoe- live octopus

hobak siru ttok- pumpkin rice cakes

Gyeongsang Province. South East Coast (Busan). Cooking is described as simple, salty, and hot (Daegu, Gyeongju, Ulsan, Busan)

Jinju bibimbap- mixed rice

dak kal guksu- homemade chicken noodle soup

yukgaejang- spicy beef soup

Jeju-do. Southern most island. Less dependency on rice and kimchi, seafood and oranges abound.

jonbok juk- abalone rice porridge

haemul guksu- fish noodles

bingtteok- buckwheat pancakes rolled with sliced white radish.

And, I guess this poo pig you speak of. I wonder why poo would make the pig taste better? Would it cause the pig to be fattier?

Hope this helps.

She came, she saw. She ate, she blogged.

www.maryeats.com

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Closer maybe to a shabu shabu.  Very wide, and not too deep.  It was the divot that caught my eye, as there's a bunch of neat things could be done with that, as it puts one section closer to the heat.

Threr are a couple of dishes that come to mind, one is haemul-jeongol a seafood hot pot with vegetables and beef, or two maeuntang, a spicy, thick stew of fish, clams, and veggies.

But I am unsure of the actual dish you are thinking of, as I can't reacll any dishes with divots in them.

I think it was a version of haemul jeongul!

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  • 2 months later...

We ate at the local BaWoo Restaurant and had Samgyeopsal for lunch.

Samgyeopsal cooking merrily on our table top.

gallery_48583_4079_134465.jpg

Lettuce and shiso leaves for wrapping, salt/pepper oil for dipping, 4 seasons paste also for dipping and raw garlic to include in the wrapped ssam.

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Shredded leeks salad and pickled radish.

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The obligatory kimchi plate.

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Veggie stir-fry (button mushrooms, onions, broccoli and red bell pepper).

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Squash pajeon and mulberry? jelly. (Sorry for the blurry pic)

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Pickled cucumbers (they were really crunchy too!) and steamed squash.

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Shikkhe drink after the meal.

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I forgot to take pics of the macaroni salad, white kimchi, dwenjjang jjige and the steamed rice.

Although we enjoyed the meal, it could have been better if the restaurant had live coals underneath to cook the meat. Bawoo Restaurant uses gas grills instead of charcoal.

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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I found two more pics from our samgyeopsal eating excursion at Bawoo Restaurant.

Here is the white kimchi plate:

gallery_48583_4079_144307.jpg

Raw crab marinated in red peppersauce (we sent this back since we all didn't like it):

gallery_48583_4079_190238.jpg

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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you know that raw crab is my favorite!!!!! I think that jelly is made from acorns not mulberrys. I like it better when it is brownish tan in colour though because it looks more appetizing. Do you cook the kimchi on the grill after you cook the sam gyeop sal? My family does that and it tastes really awesome, but its kinda country style and might be looked down on.

so how much did that meal cost for your whole family? any soju? also, have you ever had o gyeop sal?

BEARS, BEETS, BATTLESTAR GALACTICA
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You are right, acorn was the word I was looking for. It was acorn jelly not mulberry. We didn't cook the kimchi on the grill because we over-stuffed ourselves with the sam gyeop sal. I think I ate about 20 ssam packages (I wrapped mine with sesame leaves).

It cost about 7 dollars per person (we were a group of four) and no soju (we don't drink alcohol - only soft drinks). I think the total bill was about 34-36 dollars in the end.

Hmmm what is o gyeop sal?

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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in seoraksan they have this great restaurant that specializes in soon dubu.  I don't know if seoraksan is famous for soon dubu or not, but this restaurant is well known and serves the best soon dubu I have ever had.  Too bad I was 13 when I went there so I have no clue what it was called.  It was a traditional style restaurant with floor tables and wooden & paper sliding doors.  Afterwards we went to a fish market and had fresh squid sashimi that had just been caught.  We just ate it plain and it was so yummy.

In Nohak-dong, on the west side of Sokcho and just on the edge of Seoraksan NP there are two villages of sundubu restaurants. I ate at several establishments and found the sundubu to be very basic - just tofu and a simple broth. Of course there were various seasonings and banchan with it so one would season it to taste. Away from Gangwon-do I've almost always had sundubu come with lots of seasoning, and clams and such - I guess that is properly Sundubu-jjigae, but not always labeled as such....

-- phage

Gac

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  • 4 weeks later...
I found two more pics from our samgyeopsal eating excursion at Bawoo Restaurant.

Here is the white kimchi plate:

gallery_48583_4079_144307.jpg

Raw crab marinated in red peppersauce (we sent this back since we all didn't like it):

gallery_48583_4079_190238.jpg

Oh my god, the raw crab is probably my favorite korean side dish. The spicy kind, not the soy sauced one. That one makes me gag for some reason.

There's one korean bbq restaurant I go to here just for their kye-jang. Man now you got me craving the stuff.

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the soy sauce crab is great.  You take the empty body shell, throw in some rice and scoop it back out with your spoon so it is covered in innards and soy sauce.

oh

my

god

so good.

I'll give this a shot the next time I get it...but for some reason soy sauce crab is one of the only foods that make me gag.. :/

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  • 2 months later...

Street market eats in Janghowon...

Braised pig trotters...

gallery_48583_4432_100447.jpg

Spicy tripe and chicken feet trays....

gallery_48583_4432_210947.jpg

And what I ate today ... Haejangguk - Beef Blood Stew...

gallery_48583_4432_276483.jpg

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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  • 4 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...

I don't know if you've been and gone yet, but here are some of my suggestions:

Grab breakfast/lunch at any one of the Gimbap Cheonguk/Gimbap Nara chains (hard to miss, they're everywhere and they're orange), where you can get gimbap, bibimbap, kimchi jigae and the like. Good if you're eating alone.

Walk through Insadong in the afternoon and stand in line for a hotuk - a pancake filled with brown sugar and ground nuts. Go into any one of the teahouses that run off Insadong and order some bokbun jaju; a kind of sweet berry wine; and kamja jeon (potato pancake) or haemmul jeon (seafood pancake).

At night, hit Sinchon, and wander through the alleys until you find a Chuncheon Jib Ddalk Galbi chain, and enjoy a hot pan full of chicken and rice cakes in spicy sauce. Alternatively, try any of the amazing galbi jibs (Korean barbecue houses) in that area. They're all cheap, because it's a student area. Just look for a place with real coals in the table, and lots of people. Order at least one bottle of soju. There's lots of good street food here, as well, like ddeok bokki and odeng stalls.

That should get you started, and if you walk into any restaurant the Korean staff will be happy to help you choose something - just remember, even in Seoul, not a lot of English is spoken. Be adventurous and you'll be rewarded.

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  • 2 months later...

My korean friends took me and Billy to a korean shabu-shabu restaurant. It was interesting to see the difference between shabu-shabus in Manila, China, Japan, etc.

You have to forgive some of the blurry pics as I used my celphone to take the pictures. Here we have the basic soup stock. Even though it is red, it wasn't spicy at all (to my surprise).

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The first of many servings of thinly sliced beef.

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Of course, it wouldn't be korean without the kimchi bowls. The napa cabbage kimchi was so-so (and slightly sweet) but the radish kimchi rocked!

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A bowlful of rice with toppings and an egg yolk for the bokkum'ed rice later.

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Leafy veggies, mushrooms and even squash slices to add to the soup.

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Sigh, another blurry pic of the noodles made in-house by the restaurant. This will be added to the soup after all the meat is consumed.

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Let's get everything started by adding the mushrooms first. We had pine mushrooms, and two other kinds. Once they were slightly done, we started dipping our beef in the boiling broth.

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After 3 trays of beef, we decided we were ready for the noodles. You can tell it was freshly-made and was slightly chewy.

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And when all the noodles are gone and the tasty broth has boiled down to a cup or less, the rice with the toppings and eggyok is dumped in and bokkumed together. I thought I couldn't eat another bite but managed to eat half a bowlful (inspired by the Green's eating prowess :biggrin:)

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At the end of the meal, we were served coffee and hot roasted soybean milk tea. It was wonderful! :rolleyes:

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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  • 1 month later...

It's been quite a while since this thread had been posted to. But I hope someone can help me out. We are having a Korean function on Sunday, and I will be stationed in the dining room. I was told to wear the Korean national costume but I think that will be very uncomfortable and might even cause trouble. My question is, what do waitresses or female dining managers usually wear in Korean restaurants?

Any help will be very much appreciated. Thanks!

Angel
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The adjumas, older ladies, wear shapeless baggy pants in outrageous colors (purple, orange, tangerine, etc) matched with an equally outrageous shirt (usually floral printed or in shocking colors like fuschia or lime green). The young'uns wear jeans and shirt in hole-in-the-wall places while fancier restaurants have their waitstaff dress up like their foreign counterparts in US/Europe (white buttoned shirt plus black slacks with white apron).

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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  • 6 months later...

I will be in Seoul in Ocotber and would like to find some great places to eat. I am mainly interested in high end dining, but would also stop for street food or similar if it is really good.

Is there anybody doing modernist food (i.e. analogous to Ferran Adria / Heston Blumenthal) in Korea?

Nathan

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I will be in Seoul in Ocotber and would like to find some great places to eat.   I am mainly interested in high end dining, but would also stop for street food or similar if it is really good.

Is there anybody doing modernist food (i.e. analogous to Ferran Adria / Heston Blumenthal) in Korea?

Nathan,

Seoul's a tough play for cutting edge cuisine. Some of the folks I've talked to think it'll still be a few years before you can find what you're looking for there (basically, for some of the kids who are doing home stays abroad now to get some serious experience under their belts and come back and cook).

I'd check out zen kimchi for sure, and, of course, Doddie's blog for up to date rec's on where and what to do.

You can wade through my last stupid trip to Korea, but have some patience.

If I was asked what I really wanted to do as an outstanding meal in Seoul, I'd have three recommendations, none of which are fancy:

1. eat at that beef place Flavour of a Long Time Ago

2. eat at the Cheju-Do pork place

3. go to Garak Sijang, the big market on the south side of the Han, at around midnight, with a few friends and a lot of soju, and take one of the platforms in they have in the middle of the market and just start ordering a lot of food....order it live.

Korea in Spring.....that sounds good.

Edited by Peter Green (log)
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  • 1 month later...

I don't think you're likely to find any avantguard cuisine in Korea at all. Labour is generally cheap in Korea (well, compared to the white world), and thus people generally do not go for labour intensive luxuries.

If a korean had 10 man won (about $100) to spend for a meal, I think he would rather prefer to eat at a lobster place or a nice japanese style fish place with lots of sukedashi, rather than an avantguard restaurant. And then there is always dog, which is pretty expensive as food goes.

And if a Korean has more than that to spend on his meal (i.e. the $300-400 per person commonly dumped into food & wine degustation), he's more likely to spend it on business clubbing (room sa rong).

Please avoid western restaurants like the plague while you are there. They are awful. The best western you'll experience is likely to be "family restaurants", such as Bennigans, TGI, Outback, etc. Otherwise stick purely to local. Local is cheaper and tastes a hell of a lot better.

My friends and I always enjoyed going to ZenZen (near back of ASEM tower) and having some pork bellies with soju, followed by Jug Jug (pub near sam sung hyun dae shopping tower) for some beer, and finish with Chun (business club near chung dam station) drinking with lovelies.

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I've always found that the less expensive a place is the better the food. Indeed the standard at working class establishments is quite fantastic very often. I've always had people looking after me but it's well worth making clear that that's what you're looking for in a polite way. High end is pretty dismal in my experience.

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My dear friend (from france) is headed to Korea (Seoul), and she wants to know what to eat, what not to miss....she doesn't eat pork or shellfish.....other than that, she LOVES good food! all suggestions and recommendations for unmissable yummies appreciated, as well as suggestions about dishes and foods she shouldn't miss tasting!

i've told her kimchee and kimchee and kimchee; wish i were going too!

thanks!

Marlena the spieler

www.marlenaspieler.com

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