Seoul Food- Korea 2017

Seoul Food- Korea 2017

That’s right! Korea has some Good Ass Food- but for someone who had to skip the KBBQ, what kind of options are out there? One of my favorite aspects of Korea was the Cafe Culture. Cafe’s in every shape, color, and genre you can imagine on EVERY SINGLE CORNER! Korea has the big coffee chains like Starbucks and Coffee Bean as well, but with new and interesting twists like blossom inspired drinks in the Spring. Below you can find my recommendations on some of the best places we went to.

1. Oh, Lolly Day Cafe

It’s amazing the things you stumble upon when you are looking for something else. We were looking for a museum for about half an hour after coming back from a palace tour when we stumbled upon this cafe. Initially we were going to just ask for directions- but the cafe had such a cute aesthetic I had to stay for a little. The cafe has a rooftop balcony that is painted pink and outside couches, chairs, annnnd an inflatable FLAMINGO! The cafe overlooks one of the palaces #views.

(108, Dongsulla-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul, Korea (behind Changdeokgung palace)

2. Namu Izakaya

Yes, Sushi in Korea. The sushi at this spot was REALLY fresh. A cool vibe inside the restaurant- dark panels and nice lighting. Our waiter saw that we obviously could not read the menu so he got his phone out and started trying things in Google translate. We explained what we wanted and they brought us this delicousness. Best part was that it was a five minute walk from our Airbnb.

(517 Seolleung-ro, Yeoksam 1(il)-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea)

3. Sanchon

This is probably my MOST recommended restaurant. Seriously, this was quite the experience. Sanchon is actually pretty well known. In a little alley way in the popular area of Insadong, is this quiet and unassuming restaurant that serves Buddhist temple food aka VEGAN. When you walk in you have to take your shoes off and as you walk through the absolutely gorgeous restaurant- you can choose to sit on the floor or at a high table. There are plants and beautiful lights throughout- it really was a special place. The menu is a pre-fixed four course meal for about 45,000 won which is around $35 dollars. At first my mom was joking that we would definitely not get full of a place that is basically serving just veggies. SHE THOUGHT WRONG. We had to be rolled out of there. THey kept bringing course after course, each plate was so beautifully decorated, endless tea and to top it off at 8pm they had a show. Given, the show was *interesting*, but definitely a super cool experience. Most people know where Sanchon is (probably because a lot of Americans go there). The restaurant is run by a cute little elderly couple. This spot was an attraction in and of itself. Sanchon is also located in a really good area where we there a lots of shops and cafes (so we went to get some real dessert after).

(517 Seolleung-ro, Yeoksam 1(il)-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea)

4. O’Sulloc Tea House

This tea house chain was one of my favorite places- EVER! If your’e into green tea and matcha- then this is definitely the place for you. The tea comes from Jeju Island- an island off the coast of the Korean peninsula. The store itself has a super earthy feel to it- browns and greens everywhere. The green tea latte was delicious and the green tea roll sponge cake was even better. This was our “real” dessert after Sanchon in Insadong. O’sulloc serves hot teas, frappuchinos/ ice blended type drinks, Korean shaved ice and ice cream- all green tea flavored.

(170 Gwanhun-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea)

5. DropTop Cafe

So, as it turns out- this was another cafe chain (although this was the only location I stumbled upon). This cafe caught my name primarily for it’s name- which happened to be “part” of a song that was really popular (and annoying) back in April. This cafe was in Hongdae- a popular place for college kids to hang out- mainly because there are a few universities in the area. The second floor that faces the street is made of glass windows that can be opened completely. They also have cute fairy string lights in the windows at night- which I am a total sucker for. They serve some yummy drinks- their version of a frapp is called a “dropcinno” (cute, right?). Below is also a picture of a honey bread brick toast which is something that is served in a lot of cafes throughout the city. It’s basically a HUGE piece of french toast with different toppings and extras.

(45-1 Eoulmadang-ro, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Korea)

6. Line Friends Cafe

Line Friends are basically Asian emojis for a messaging app called LINE (no, I did not know this before). Apparently, this is a pretty big thing in Asia- and there are many Line Friends stores and cafes- even some in NYC. I am assuming that it is mainly geared towards kids and teens- but nonetheless, they have really cute toys, apparel and all kinds of different things with the characters. The main store that everyone goes to is in Myeongdong because there is a HUGE bear at the entrance of the store that people literally wait in line to get a picture with. I, with little patience for that, happened to find a different store, with no line in sight, and got a picture with the bear. The cafe is cute- but definitely a tourist attraction/ picture attraction.

(9 Myeongdong 8na-gil, Myeongdong 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea)

Other Cafe’s Worth Checking Out……

  • Poop Cafe- coffee is served from a mini toilet cup, emoji poop shaped waffles (Located on the 4th floor of the Ssamziegil Mall)
  • Hello Kitty Cafe- all pink everything! (Located in Hongdae)
  • Thanks Nature Cafe- Sheep + Lattes- Korea has a thing with animal cafes, this is a unique experience (Mapo-gu area)
  • And for the strong at heart… Blind Alley- a hotspot for all the coolest raccoons (yes, raccoons) in Seoul, the raccoons are in a closed off area (Yongsan-gu area)

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