Tag Archives: cheese

Adventures in South Korea: Dakgalbi street

9 May

So May 5th is Children’s day in South Korea and as a teacher I benefited from kids not going to school on children’s day. I took this opportunity to go to Chuncheon a two hour bus ride away from Samcheok. Chuncheon is the place where Nami Island is located (I was unable to go this time because it rained), it is also the place where dakgalbi was first ever made (if you have been to Korea and have not tried dakgalbi you have been robbed of an awesome gastronomic experience).
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This is one side of dakgalbi street (it is actually more like an alley, but it is filled with dakgalbi restaurants so we will let them be a street). I would like to point out that right next to this sign is the entrance to a large underground shopping center that people should experience.

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There is a map of all the restaurant available and well we only tried three this time but we will go back.

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Also they like to have chicken themed things which why-not just take a picture with it all.

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The first place was a different type of dakgalbi i have never tried before and by looking at the picture you will notice the difference. This type of dakgalby is just chicken marinated in (an impossibly good) sauce (how do they make it I would like to know the secret to this sauce) and grilled over coals just like bulgogy.

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As side dishes you have a greens salad of sorts which contains green onions, sesame oil, red pepper flakes and other herbs (I just don’t know the names of them in English or Korean to be honest).

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Lettuce is provided to wrap the chicken you grill and cut (with scissors) and other things like your salad, kimchi, radishes, garlic, and gochujan sauce (it is given with almost any type of grilled food here and I am not entirely sure on the romanized spelling of it). What ever you put in your lettuce wrap depends on the place you go to because side dishes will always change.

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These are thinly sliced picked radishes and are an acquired taste but you won’t know until you try them won’t you?

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While that was not the dakgalbi we were expecting it was good and for only 11,000 won it is well worth going to try it.

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this the other end of the street and there are many advertisements for following festivals in Chuncheon, which include puppet and mime festivals (look them up).

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We also found a desert place near the street. it is a waffle on a stick with icream and whip cream on it and it is delicious for 3,500 won you get two waffles on a stick for an extra 1000 won you get four (your call from then on).

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Chuncheon is also the site of the very first super popular drama, Winter Sonata which launched Korean dramas as the leading dramas to watch in South east Asia and all over the world (just look at crunchy roll or drama fever most of them will be Korean dramas).

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SO that is that on Korean Dramas back to the food!

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Second dakgalbi place, this time it was more like we had experience before. The cabage, dok (rice cakes), sweet potato, sesame leaves and chicken in the awesome sauce cooked right in front of you.

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Sorry for the food porn.

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The side dishes inchoded kimchi, cold radish vinegar soup?, garlic, gochujan, and lettuce.

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at the end of the first part when you eat the chicken and the vegetables you leave some of it behind and order noodles or rice. We went for cheesy rice because it is always a good choice.

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and it was the best ever.

The next day a dakgalbi restaurant had this and I just had to go in it.(woomi dakgalbi).

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is a hungry nerd’s dream!

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They are also dakgalbi purist so no cheese here but the sauce has a ginger feel to it so if you like ginger come here.

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next after circling a couple time because we got too full of dakgalbi we found an ice cream fish place!

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They take a fish shaped cone and fill it with ice cream and fruit. Try it!

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Adventures in South Korea: Itaewon, Seoul

2 Aug

Vacation time started and the original plan was to go to Seoul and just check it out (well I took a detour when I ended up in the same bus as two other teachers). Once we arrived at the station Dongsu station we walked a bout a block to find the train station. If you are in going to visit Seoul I would recommend getting a transit card if you have not already gotten one (I did not because I do not need to take buses in Samcheok unless you count the occasional inter city bus once a moth or so). If not sure cabs are usually available and are not super expensive specially if shared between people. 

Itaewon is a wonderful place full of ethnic food you don’t really get anywhere else in South Korea and bars that have perfect the visual art of drinks. 

First stop Bermuda (triangle), if you are into it their gin and tonics are amazing, the specialize in mojitos (which come in many flavors) but all of their drinks have this great visual appeal that matches the flavor of the drink. I enjoyed a well made white Russian.

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Second on the list is Sherlock Holmes, one of the people in my group was British so we figured this was a great idea. They play Sherlock in their couch area which are covered in union jack blankets. They have board games along with a selection of U.K. imported beers. I personally witnessed a spirited game of checkers (unfortunately it did not do so well due to inebriation assisted amnesia regarding the rules of the game) while enjoying a great rum and coke.

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Finally on the list was an Italian style restaurant of which name I have forgotten since we just added wine to the rest of the alcohol we had consumed. This one in particular was really and was discounted from 45,000 won to 29,000 won. This Spanish wine was a great ending to the day and it was accompanied by cheese! If you have not yet experienced the cheese situation in South Korea is not entirely great. There is cheese but it is expensive as most of it has to be imported or processed. So a cheese platter that came with saltine crackers and a few pieces of bread was like heaven. They do make their pizzas with puff pastry which does not make for very good pizza but the wine and cheese is great.  

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Go wild on Itaewon and find your favorite back home food (even if it is a bit pricier than you would get it at home the comfort is worth it).