South Korea, Land of Kimchi and Cheesiness: What and Where

*This is a continuation to the Seoulviving Kimchiland: Who, What, and More post.


STREET FOOD, OF COURSE! From tteokbokki (rice cake and fish cake) to the one foot ice cream, their street food is delicious! Usually amounting to 1,500 won or more, this little goodies will definitely make you full. Try tteokbokki, kimbap, odeng (fish cake), japchae (sweet potato starch noodles stir fried with vegetables and meat).

Japchae!! This was taken in Busan.

But if you do get tired of street food, you can eat dakgalbi (chicken), samgyupsal (pork), bulgogi (beef).

Another must try would be bibimbap and jjigae.

Speaking of bibimbap, if you are to go to Jeonju, do eat Jeonju Bibimbap. It’s their specialty and everyone I asked about recommended me to eat it. I had one (around 12,000 won) and it also had a LOT of side dishes. Actually, I wouldn’t say side dishes because it seemed that I would already be full with just those! See for yourself:

Would you really call those SIDE dishes?
Would you really call those SIDE dishes?

Noh and Kim (whom I met in Busan via couchsurfing) recommended me to eat milmyeon when I went to Busan. They told me it’s like naengmyun but spicy. It’s cold noodles so the soup helped a lot while eating it.


Watermelon Milk offered in a certain convenient store. Image from flickr.
Strawberry milk!

What I also love about Korea is their fondness for milk. They have different flavors (unlike in the Philippines) that are cheap, too! I bought strawberry milk everyday and even had a taste of the watermelon milk which I chanced upon while walking in Bukchon!

With cafes on every corner of Seoul (and almost everywhere I went), it’s good to try out some of their coffees, teas, or frappes. They also offer desserts. I love their bingsu. It’s a shaved ice dessert.

Injeolmi Bingsu
Injeolmi Bingsu in a cafe in Myeongdong

The first time I tried it, it was like eating snow! I was able to try it twice – my first night and my last night. Now, bingsu is available in our country and even when I went to Thailand.

And of course, eat the side dishes! You’d be full just by eating their side dishes. You could even ask for more! There’s a special side dish close to my heart. It’s called mu. It’s raddish that is matched when you eat chicken. It’s really addicting!


You can find stalls near schools and the subway stations. There are also a lot in Myeongdong and in Namdaemun Market. I was able to eat tteokbokki near my hostel and it was different from what the others offered because they put cheese! Actually, there are a lot of places that offer to have your food topped with melted cheese (hence my mentioning of cheesiness).P_20150401_185912

I was able to try tteokbokki topped with cheese. It was really good since the cheese was melted. The vendor also added
basil so it added some flavor to the already wonderful street food I bought. That ahjussi was really kind, too. He told me of his backpacking and photography days. I had so much fun talking to him, I finished what I bought there even though I had it as a take away! This was in Hongdae.

In Yoogane (Myeongdong), we had chicken with cheese on the side (sort of a dip). We had to wait for the cheese to melt. After we were done eating the chicken, we added rice on the hot plate, and voila, bokumbap! It was really good. (This was also featured in the Korean drama: The Producer in Episode 3, 10, 11)

I bet Taehyun enjoyed shooting this scene!   


Another good restaurant is 맛있는 불고기 작전 (Masitneun Bulgog Jakjeon) in Hongdae. My Korean friends told me it was a recommended place. And so when we met, they just led me there (They also used GPS haha). Unfortunately, there was a line up to the outside of the restaurant considering it was a Tuesday night! I can’t imagine the line if we happened to eat there on a Friday or a weekend! We had to wait for around 20-30 minutes. P_20150331_201537

The long wait was over and lookie here! I have such good friends! It was amazing. This would probably the best I have tried in Korea. I can eat it all day! We also added rice to the pan after we were finished eating the chicken. And this was also the time I was introduced to mu. My favorite side dish ❤

I was also able to try out the pizza and pasta in James Chicago Pizza located in Hongdae. It was really enjoyable since they offered jam for the handle/crust. I also enjoyed eating their salad.

I didn’t actually eat in restaurants when I was alone in Seoul since the servings were good for 2 or more. So I ate a lot of times in kiosks or just food available from the convenience stores. If I do come back though, I would definitely eat in this places again!

Will be posting about my Cherry Blossom Festival Trip and Busan trip soon (along with my other trips these past few months).


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