Seoul Restaurant Reviews

food reviews, New, Seoul Restaurant Reviews

합정 미야비: Seoul’s most unique sushi?


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Watch the full review here!

Seeing as Korea is a peninsula, it isn’t difficult to find fresh seafood. Raw fish can be found at restaurants all over the country, as well as in large fish markets, small outdoor markets, grocery stores, and even convenience stores.

For this video, I traveled to the Hapjeong District of Seoul. This neighborhood has a hip vibe to it, and it well known for couples as it makes for a great date evening.

합정 미야비 -Hapjeong Miyavi is located on the second floor.

Visiting ‘Miyavi’ (합정 미야비) was a great experience. The restaurant is small, and located on the second floor. The restaurant only has a few tables, while the counter can seat six patrons. You’ll get a first-row seat to the sushi chef in action.

Speaking of the sushi chef, Choi InHo (최인호) has a decade working at one of the finest hotels in the country. Watching him meticulously slice the raw fish proves his knowledge, passion, and creativity for delivering a memorable product.

While the ambiance of the restaurant exudes a romantic feeling, the random pop music playing in the background seems out of place (hello, Justin Bieber!). If I had to change one thing about the experience – this would be it. Businesses in Asia love to blast up-beat music, so I shouldn’t have been surprised by this. However, it was super random.

We started our meal with a dish I had never heard of. Raw flatfish (광어) is plated on a sauce made from vegetables and truffle. More truffle is grated on top of the fish. It is then fused with oak smoke.

While this may sound like a gimmick, the result was actually the highlight of the meal. The fish was soft and tender. Faint traces of the oak could be picked up. The sauce was rich. I could have left after this, and been satisfied.

What followed next was an assortment of 13 different types of raw seafood. I was most familiar with the raw tuna and salmon. After eating raw tuna on dozens of occasions – I can confidently say this was like none other. It was the best bite of raw fish I have ever eaten. It melted in my mouth with a flavor unlike any other tuna I have tried.

13 different varieties of raw seafood, served with a dollop of wasabi.

The other 12 pieces of sashimi on the plate, while amazing, just could never live up to that tuna. This is one piece of fish you don’t want to kill with going overboard with the soy sauce and wasabi! Please us it sparingly!

Moving on, we tried the potato/cheese/fish egg concoction. This was topped with a slab of butter. It seemed like a true dichotomy from all the raw fish we had just eaten. However, it was so tasty! The outside was like a deep fried mashed potato, while the inside was gooey and melted cheese. This is the type of food you need a beer to companion it with!

We also tried their beef hot pot, as well as the sorbet. These were both impressive as well!

Overall, 합정 미야비 is serving up some great food at reasonable prices. There are other izakayas and restaurants serving up fish with lower prices, but the quality is on a totally different level.

If nothing else, I would stop by for the truffle flatfish ceviche, as it is worth going out of your way for!

Restaurant information:

Address: 31-7 World cup-ro 3-gil, Hapjeong-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul

Phone: 02-336-5572

food reviews, Korea restaurant reviews, Seoul Restaurant Reviews

Kim’s Taco in Gangnam – worth the hype?


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Having lived in Korea for a decade, I have been to my fair share of Mexican restaurants. I remember being so happy when Taco Bell opened its doors in Itaewon, as it finally meant reliable TexMex food. I could always count on them to deliver tasty, greasy, yet semi-affordable tacos and burritos.

 

Fast forward a few years later, and I was invited to check out a new restaurant in Gangnam, Seoul. The restaurant is called Kim’s Taco, and is owned by some Korean Americans from Los Angeles who decided to bring LA style Mexican foods to Seoul.

Check out my full review on YouTube-

I arrived at the restaurant at 4 PM on a Saturday. They had just re-opened after taking a short afternoon break. The restaurant immediately filled up, and the kitchen had to go into overdrive to meet the demands of the patrons. Luckily, I was able to secure a seat on their small patio outside.

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Look at this feast! If the weather is nice, definitely try to sit outside!

We started the meal with a signature cocktail – the Cantaritos. This large cocktail combines classic Korean soju with Jarritos – a Mexican soda made with cane sugar. The result was something that tasted like a light margarita. Was refreshing, but also packed a nice alcohol punch!

The serving was for 2, however I may have consumed it all by myself. Ooops! Cost: 15000 KRW (can also be made with tequila)

Next up we were able to sample a variety of tacos, quesadillas, as well as their french fries.

I quite enjoyed all the food that I tasted. Portions were quite large, and the price was very reasonable. I personally really enjoyed the fish tacos. The fish was light and flakey, and was battered using Cass beer.

The fish tacos (upper right) were some of my favorites! The french fries were also pretty spectacular.

What makes Kim’s Taco unique is the fact that they hand press the tortillas throughout the day. This, combined with their other fresh ingredients, makes for an experience similar to what I would have in the USA.

The restaurant mainly serves tacos, burritos, quesadillas, and tostada bowls. Each item can be served with either chicken, beef, or pork.

Beef tacos and pork tacos on fresh flour tortillas, topped with diced onion and fresh cilantro. Yum!
L: Cantaritos cocktail R: Asada Fries
These two things go together very well! Bring a friend and share!

If you wish to check out Kim’s Taco – I would recommend going early, as the shop is small, and seating is limited. Also, plan to check out their cocktails! I would also advise bringing a group of people, if possible, and ordering family style. This way, you’re able to try as many different foods as possible!

 

Kim’s Taco is located between Gangnam Station and Yeoksam Station.

**Although we were invited to the restaurant in exchange for a review, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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food reviews, Korea restaurant reviews, New, Seoul Restaurant Reviews

Korea’s craziest treat: introducing the Churro Dog!


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Korea is home to some amazing treats – and some of them are quite unique!

Recently, we tried out the newest invention hitting the streets: the churros dog (츄로 도그)! This unique street food is a hot dog on a stick, wrapped with fresh churro batter, deep fried, then covered in cinnamon, sugar, ketchup, and mustard!

Watch our review here:

If you want to try this unique treat, you’ll have to check out the seller’s Instagram account. For this video, I headed to Jamsil in Seoul. The price of the churro dog costs 3500 KRW.

churro dog in seoul
Churro Dog and truck in Jamsil, Seoul (잠실 츄로 도그)

If you are visiting South Korea, you’ll have an almost endless amount of street foods to try out. However, this one is one of the most unique foods you can try, and is perfect for Instagram!

츄로 도그
The churro dog is delicious! Try it out today!

food reviews, Seoul Restaurant Reviews, Uncategorized

Trying the Cheeto’s Krispy Kreme in Korea


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Krispy Kreme in South Korea has come up with a unique combination of flavors: the Cheeoto’s Doughnut!

The Cheeto’s Pop (치토스 팝) is one of four flavors in Krispy Kreme’s ‘Cheese Holic’ campaign, which is currently running. Other flavors include a nacho cheese donut, cheddar cheese donut, and a tomato and chili cheese flavor donut.

We tried these four flavors out and reviewed them for those of you who don’t live in Korea.

Be sure to check out what we thought about them!

 

food reviews, Seoul Restaurant Reviews

Top Five Foods to Eat to Beat the Summer Heat


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To see our full review of the top five foods to eat in the Summer in Korea, first watch this video!

 

Summers in Korea can be quite difficult to handle. As the temps soar, everyone does what they need to do to stay cool. This might include going to a public sauna for a public bath, blasting the air conditioner, or using a portable fan.

However, Koreans also use food to help them stay cool. Today we will look at five foods that help Koreans beat the summer heat.

 

  1. Ice Cream

While ice cream obviously isn’t unique to Korea, it has a special culture, unlike what we foreigners may be used to. Ice cream is consumed in all four seasons, and at any time of the day. It can be found in a multitude of varieties in convenience stores, served in a cafe, or, in this case, at an ‘Ice Cream ATM’.

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The ATM is outside of Baskin Robbin’s in Seoul. Users pay 3300 Korean Won (approx $3 USD). They can pay by cash or credit card. In just a few moments, a container of ice cream is delivered. A small spoon is included as well! It’s an amazing invention!

Baskin Robbin’s is located all around Korea. This ATM was located in Hannam Dong, Seoul.

 

2. Bingsu

Bingsu is like a more sophisticated version of a traditional snow cone. It has a base of finely shaved ice, and is topped with a variety of ingredients. I tried the ‘pineapple bingsu’ from a place called Tokyo Bingsu in Seoul. The shaved ice was topped with a pineapple mousse, pineapple bits, and pieces of waffle cone.

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The bingsu was light and refreshing. While sweet, it wasn’t overly sweet. It made the perfect mid-day snack without being too heavy.

In this video I visited Tokyo Bingsu (10 Noksapyeong-daero 46-gil, Itaewon-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul). The price of the pineapple bingsu was 11,000 KRW. Check out Tokyo Bingsu’s website here.

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Pineapple Bingsu from Tokyo Bingsu

 

3. Samgyetang

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Samgyetang is a chicken soup that is eaten in the summer. A whole young chicken is stuffed with rice, ginseng, and a jujube. The samgyetang is served boiling hot in a stone bowl. A variety of side dishes are included to enjoy with the soup.

Koreans often believe that it is best to beat heat with heat (fight fire with fire!). Therefore, they enjoy this boiling hot soup to refresh themselves on a hot summer day. They believe it gives them stamina to get through the hot days.

The restaurant in this vlog is called ChoonChu Samgyetang. The price for the meal was 14000 KRW. Location information: (삼계탕전문점 춘추 : 서울시 용산구 대사관로 52, 2층) ChoonChu Samgyetang: Seoul, Yongsan Gu, Daesagwan Ro 52, 2F.

ChoonChu Samgyetang has no official website.

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Menu for Choonchu Samgyetang

Men

 

4. Nangmyeon

Literally translate, nangmyeon means “cold noodles”. Nangmyeon is buckwheat noodles in a broth of yuksu, which is a bone broth. The noodles coming cold with ice floating in it. These noodles are topped with sesame seeds, gochujang (red pepper paste), half of a boiled egg, daikon radish, and cucumbers.

There are two varieties: mul and bibim. The only difference is that mul nangmyeon has broth, while bibim nangmyeon lacks the broth.

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Enjoying a refreshing bowl of nangmyeon

I recommend ordering mandu (steamed dumplings) to complete the meal.

The restaurant I ate at in this vlog was called DongA Nangmyeon. They have multiple locations all around Seoul.

This location (동아냉면) is located in Itaewon (265-576 Bogwang-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul). The basic price is 5000 KRW.

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Steamed mandu

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A refreshing bowl of mul nangmyeon

 

5. Watermelon

 

What can I say about watermelon that hasn’t been said before? It’s yummy, it’s refreshing, and it’s healthy. It is the perfect summer time treat!  Koreans love eating fresh watermelon in the summer. It is often eaten on picnics, and shared in the office with co-workers.

You’ll also find plenty of watermelon-flavored foods including juice, milk, ice cream, and shakes.

 

With all of these amazing foods, it might be hard to know what to eat first! One thing’s for sure, though. Summers in Korea are HOT, and you’ll definitely find yourself looking for any excuse to eat any of these foods to stay cool!