Our time in Seoul consisted of eating. and eating. and eating…. And to be absolutely honest about the gluttony that came over us, we would at times eat just to try the food even though we were full! We left the city with suitcases and stomachs both expanded and happy for all the cultural experiences that came with it. In this post, we share all the places we tried. Enjoy!
1. Myeong-dong Kyoja (명동 교자 칼국수)
- 3 stories tall with only 4 things on their menu!
- Very busy but their service is fast & efficient
- Most famous for their kalguksu (칼국수), handmade, knife-cut noodles served in broth and other ingredients
- The noodles pair well with their garlic-y, abundantly hot peppered kimchi!
2. Sulbing Cafe (설빙)
- A dessert cafe chain that specializes in Korean shaved ice
- We went at least 3 times during our trip 😂
- The shaved ice is fluffy and light
- Our favorites were the green tea and injeolmi (인절미) bingsu
3. Noryangjin (노량진) Fish Market
- Pick your fish and then get seated to get it served right away
- Enjoy wrapping raw fish in lettuce with bean paste and fresh garlic
- Finish the meal with a Korean spicy fish stew (매운탕)
- This is your opportunity to try live octopus (산낙지)!
4. Gichatgil (기찻길) in Hongdae
- Our family took us here, and the galbi (갈비) was delicious and affordable!
- Spacious with lots of grill tables
- Low-key setting to enjoy bbq the authentic way
5. Tosokchon Samgyetang (토속촌 삼계탕)
- Famously known for their Samgyetang (삼계탕) traditional chicken ginseng soup
- Walking distance from the palace
- They grow their own ingredients: 4-years old ginseng, chest nut, jujube, garlics, ginger, adlay, perilla seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seed, nuts, pine nut, black sesame, and etc.
- Very hearty and is delicious with their cabbage and radish kimchi
6. Cafe de Boulangerie
- Multiple stories spacious bakery with tall ceilings and a cozy vibe
- They offer a large variety of pastries and bread
- It was busy after lunch time, filled with chatter amongst ajummas and ajussis
7. Street Food
- Street food is a must-try for the Korean food experience
- You can find them in most hotspots and neighborhoods, one of the bigger ones being the Grilled Fish Alley in Dongdaemun
- They open til late, some even opening when the clock hits 10pm to midnight
- Try the extra spicy ddukbokki (떡볶이) rice cake in Myeong dong – so good!
8. Craft Hans
- The perfect drunchie spot in Itaewon (이태원) for Chimek (chicken & beer)
- It was so crispy and tender that we ate it super fast while it was still super hot
9. Pipit Burger (삐삣버거)
- If you’re craving burgers like we did, try this nook in Itaewon (이태원)!
- The owner is an expat from Europe and really cares about the quality
- The burgers were fresh, and the portions were not too big and perfect
10. Migabon Jook (미가본)
- Chain restaurant for porridge
- The one in Myeongdong has a nice view of the streets if you get a window seat!
- We tried the chicken ginseng porridge, which was hearty
- Comes with an assortment of savory and sour side dishes, like radish and spicy octopus
11. Rest Stop Food
- Rest Stops in South Korea are amazing!!!
- They provide meals, clean bathrooms and shopping in between road trip destinations
- The newer ones are hi-tech
- The food is affordable, tasty, and there are many options to choose from
- Most rest stops have the same system where you’re given a number that shows up on screen to pick up the meal you’ve ordered – quick and efficient
12. Maht Jip (맛집)
- We forget the name of this one that our family took us to, but there are plenty of “Maht jips” to try!!
- Maht jips offer a very large variety of traditional side dishes for tasting
- The side dishes were placed on a removable table top that’s slid right into place when ready
- Lotteria is like South Korea’s Mcdonalds, although Mickey D’s is prevalent there as well
- The Bulgogi burger is unique to South Korea, and we wanted to give it a try
- It was pretty good for fast food standard 🙂
14. Pool hyang gi (풀향기)
- If you have time, explore the countryside!
- My grandaunt brought us to this place near her home and showed us their min deul lae bap (민들레밥정식) dandelion rice meal
- it came with bean paste stew and some side dishes
- very vegetarian friendly!
- Try it with rice wine makgeolli (막걸리) for a the all around country side experience
And that’s it! We hope you find this list useful for your next food adventure in Seoul 😋