Food for the Seoul
The Korean wave has been very popular throughout Southeast Asia and even Psy who brought us Gangnam style was well-liked in the world too. K-pop & K-dramas popularity has enticed many Singaporeans to travel to South Korea, including me. Korea definitely has more to it than just what we normally see- i.e. shopping, sight-seeing. Today, we will walk into the streets and I will share with you the most famous MUST try foods when you’re in Seoul!
Ddeokbokki can be found in restaurants and stalls along the street. However, this restaurant is famous among the locals and the restaurant name 먹쉬돈나, means Eat, Rest, Pay, Leave. You can choose to add all kinds of toppings like cheese, noodles, and more. Apart from that, you can choose to mix up some rice with the remaining sauce at the end of your meal. DAEBAK (대박: It means jackpot, big success, originally. But now people also use it when they are surprised/ shocked as exclamation.)!
If you plan like me to eat like a Korean you should never miss chicken soup out. This meal consist one whole chicken boiled in a basin of soup together with potatoes and rice cake. You can add noodles to go along with it. The fun part of this is that you can mix and match – i.e. add flavourings (Korean chilli paste, mustard, white vinegar and soy sauce) to enhance the soup taste. Dip your noodles in a plate of Korean chilli paste and there you go… You’ll crave for more... Head your way down to this original chicken restaurant! – Jin Ok-hwa Original Chicken Restaurant (진옥화할매원조닭한마리). Directions: Dongdaemun Station (Subway Line 1, 4), Exit 9. Go straight 160m and turn left at the Industrial Bank of Korea (기업은행). Go straight 50m and turn onto the first side street to the right. Continue 100m straight until you see the restaurant.
Chicken, especially Samgyetang is well-liked by Koreans because of its benefits. In Korea, it’s believed that the nutrients from the whole chicken, ginseng, garlic, chestnuts and jujubes will prevent illness and give you strength. The combination of different ingredients brings taste to the glutinous rice that is stuffed inside the whole chicken! I simply love it! The long queues at Tosokchon (토속촌) are worth it. Directions: Gyeongbokgung Station (Seoul Subway Line 3), Exit 2. Go straight about 170m and turn left onto Jahamun-ro 5-gil Road. Tosokchon (토속촌) is located 10m ahead on the left.
For those who crave for some spiciness, try the Chicken Galbi. Chicken Galbi can be found commonly in Korea and the servers will help you to cook while you watch and salivate. I went to this franchise in Sinchon and I think that it was worth a try along your culinary journey. Visit the Yoogane site to look for the nearest one to where you are staying.
All food and not enough fun makes me a dull girl. Whilst a lot of people go to Lotte World when they travel to Korea, I headed over to Everland some locals recommendation. It’s well worth the trip. Those who love roller coasters you should not miss out the T-Express – the world’s second steepest wooden coaster. Not only were the rides awesome but foreigners are entitled to discounts as well. Just don’t eat too much before your visit!
To make your trip to Seoul complete: you may have heard of cats and dogs café, i.e. enjoying snacks and beverages in the companion of these animals in the café. But have you heard of sheep café?
Walk down the streets towards Hongik University and you can find this café on the basement floor. Thanks Nature café has two sheep all the time and by luck you will get to see the sheep walking around the café to interact with the guests.
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