Archive for food

Experience Korea UCC Video Contest

I found a contest sponsored by where you can win up to 5,000,000 won. That’s 5 million won!

It seems all you have to do is create a video which shows how to make any type of Korean food. You can create a “unique, special Korean food recipe” or a recipe that is “simple to follow, easy to get ingredients of, and of course, taste good”. Upload that video to youtube and you’re all set!

Submit your videos between March 1st and March 31st.

You’ll have some stiff competition if you enter since you’ll be up against the fine folks here at but give it a shot!

Check out the contest here:

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What to Avoid Eating at a Hof in South Korea

Around midnight one April’s eve, Jermil and I found ourselves combing the streets of Geojedo for some eats. Many establishments had already closed, but we found a small Hof. (You might be asking yourself, what is a Hof? It’s a Korean-style bar or pub, and there are thousands of them in Korea.)

We couldn’t read the menu, but upon entering the hof, I spied a delicious stir-fry platter being served. It was everything I wanted: veggies, protein and a side of rice. Sold! Below I recount some of the dialogue that follows the hot stone stir-fry plate being delivered to our table:

X: (examining the stir-fry up-close) Um. That meat doesn’t look familiar.
Jermil: (looking confused) Yeah…what is that? You know what, I’m up for anything, I’ll try it.
X: (looking skeptical, but slightly relieved) Yes, good, you try it first.

Jermil takes a bite of “meat” and the look of nervousness turns to a look of disgust as a loud CRUNCH sound comes from his mouth.

X: Are you ok?? Are all of your teeth still in tact?!?
Jermil: That is not meat. That is organ.

Hmmm could it really be? We left the plate relatively untouched and ordered another item on the menu, which to our delight, turned out to be sweet and sour pork (tang soo yook). I returned to Seoul and told my students about my experience.

X: (desperately) What did we eat?!
Students: (buzzing, laughing) Ohhh X, some Koreans don’t even like that!!
X: (turning green) What was it?!?
Students: Chicken intestines!!!

Perhaps you have an appreciation for this culinary delicacy, but Jermil and I didn’t much care for 닭똥집. If there’s one Hof tip we can provide you with, it would be to avoid ordering 닭똥집!!!

Chicken Intestines

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Great Chinese food in Sinchon, Seoul, South Korea

Ever since we travelled to Beijing in June 2009, Jermil and I have been on a quest to find some flavourful Chinese food in Korea. Walking around in Sinchon, Seoul today, we stumbled upon a sign for Well Chai-New Style Chinese Restaurant. The menu had food titles written in English, and the interior of the restaurant was modern and inviting, so we thought we would sample the cuisine.

The modern and inviting interior of Well Chai

The modern and inviting interior of Well Chai

How to get to Well-Chai:
Take the Seoul subway Line 2 to Sinchon station, and leave the station from Exit 3. Walk straight and at the first major intersection, turn right. Walk for a few minutes and on the left side of the road you’ll see a big yellow sign that says “Nolita”, the elevator for Well-Chai is in that entrance way.

Why you should try the Chinese food at Well-Chai
Both Jermil and I ordered from the lunch menu that was reasonably priced (8 000 – 10 000 won per dish). We got the “pork garlic pork” and “barbecue beef”and both of us were delighted with our meals. Here’s why we recommend Well-Chai:
• The quality of both the pork and beef was very good.
• We were impressed with the delicious sauces in which the pork and beef were prepared.
• We loved the plentiful stir-fried vegetables that were part of our lunch platters.
• Our meals came with a generous portion of authentic Chinese fried rice.

Pork Garlic Pork

Barbecue Beef

Fried Rice

We also ordered a separate appetizer of crab dumplings (crab rangoons) that were served with a tangy dipping sauce, and they were amazing! Good Chinese food is not easy to come by in Korea, but we really enjoyed Well-Chai, and the food reminded us of some of the flavours were sampled in Beijing!

Crab Rangoons

We need your help!

Of course, since we were in a Chinese restaurant in Korea, we were served several kimchi side dishes, including, what we think was the spicy Korean version of egg drop soup. Jermil really enjoyed it, and our waitress told us the name of it, but we can’t remember it! If anyone has had this spicy soup, and knows the name of it, let us know in the comments!

Spicy egg drop soup

Well Chai is a Foreign Tourist Restaurant

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Smokey Saloon – The Best Burger Restaurant in Korea

I used to think Kraze Burgers had a pretty strong selection of hamburgers. I also thought the Friday’s Burger at T.G.I. Friday’s (the only hamburger they have) was mighty tasty. But now I don’t think I can ever go to those restaurants again! Those burgers aren’t bad by any means. It’s just that they can never compete with Smokey Saloon.

I stumbled upon Smokey Saloon while wandering around Itaewon looking for a nice place for a Sunday brunch. I didn’t know what it was but I saw a line of people waiting to get in so it must be good right? I never see that at restaurants in Korea.

The line outside of Smokey Saloon

Smokey Saloon has multiple burger combinations for your choosing. They also have a few sandwiches and a shrimp burger if you want to unleash your inner korean.

I chose the “Ambulance” which has a fried egg on top, 2 slices of bacon, American cheese, and a hash brown on the bottom. I topped them off with a side of coleslaw and “sloppy” fries (chili cheese fries).

The Smokey Burger at Smokey Saloon

The Ambulance Burger at Smokey Saloon

The entire meal was fantastic. (See more pictures below!) But don’t take my word for it. See what Candice has to say about it in this video taken inside of Smokey Saloon, where, I do declare, you will find the best burgers in South Korea.

What’s your favorite burger restaurant in Korea? Like this post? Think it sucks? Give me your opinion in the comments.

If you can’t see the video below, check it out on

Sloppy Fries at Smokey Saloon

The AMAZING Coleslaw at Smokey Saloon

The Ambulance Burger at Smokey Saloon

The aftermath of our meal at Smokey Saloon

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The Frypan, The Best Chicken Restaurant in Korea

The Frypan is a chicken and beer place. It’s pretty awesome.

There about 3 billion fried chicken restaurants in South Korea but I feel The Frypan is the best for these simple reasons:

    The chicken strips are made from actual strips right from the chicken’s breast. Some places give chicken strips that are other chicken parts mashed together into a strip-like fashion.

    They give you a salad. The most recent salad we had came with a wonderfully tangy dressing (not the kiwi salad dressing that most places offer). It also included bananas, tomatoes, and parmesan cheese.

    The dipping sauces go really well with the chicken. There’s a thai chili sauce and like a creamy garlic/mayonnaise-ish sauce which go really well together.

It’s that simple. Check out The Frypan if you get a chance. There’s one in Sinchon (Seoul), one in Geojedo, and one in downtown Daejeon. There’s gotta be more. If you find one, let me know where in the comments!

The lovely server took my picture with a friend of mine and threw it up on his blog. In korean, I think he wrote about everything we ordered and probably said how great a time we had there (which we did). This was taken shortly before we destroyed all of the chicken, chips, beer, and tasty banana salad!

The Frypan

A Mug of Beer

A Giant Mug of Beer

Banana Salad

Chicken and Chips

Thai Chili Dipping Sauce

Creamy Garlic/Mayonnaise-ish Sauce

The Frypan Poster

The Menu on a Chalkboard

The Menu on a Chalkboard

The Receipt and The Frypan Stamp Card

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