PEr FYI

November 4, 2018

Lotte Outlets, Seoul… Avoid, avoid

In Seoul it is easy to shop ’til you drop. With so many options, how can you know where to go first?

I can’t answer that question for you but I do know the one not to go at all would be Lotte Outlets. It is by far the saddest mall experience in Seoul. Good luck to anyone trying to find great value stuff to buy.

Lotte Outlets is forgettable. Next. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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September 15, 2018

Seo Rae Heon, Seoul…a hot pot spot

It is plonked  in the very busy Lotte Department Store if you fancy something spine tingling spicy.

I opted for the octopus and bulgogi hot pot – which were meant to be fused together in a big steel bowl meant to serve two or three medium-hungry people – dropped in the veggies on the tabletop induction burner and watch the steam rise. Soon, I stirred the pot and figured it had all been cooking long enough, so I spooned the spine tingling tangy/spicy soup on a bowl of rice which made it a lot more compelling. The bulgogi was a decent quality of meat but I’d rather have it with a slightly sticky marinade adding a pleasant sweetness than soaked and overpowered in this soup.

Though the flavour was good, Seo Rae Heon will not be my first choice.. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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September 8, 2018

3 Geori Butchers Blue, Seoul…meat mecca

Sleek without being imposing, this Korean barbecue restaurant is the real deal. When a Korean barbecue place wants to set itself apart from all the other Korean barbecue places, it has essentially three variables to play with: meat, heat and sides

The meat is luscious black iberico pork from Spain. The pork belly – a cut with the perfect balance of fat and protein is the true star. The other meat that really steals the spotlight is Korean beef sirloin – premium Korean beef sirloin that has nice marbling with natural flavor. They don’t try to be overly clever, or self-consciously modern, rather concentrate on getting the fundamentals right.

Oh, for a table-top barbeque place, 3 Geori Butchers Blue is not smoky at all. This way, your happy dining memories can live on in your social media, and not on your clothes.

If you’ve got that BBQ craving, then you’ve come to the right place. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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May 27, 2018

Samgeori Pocha, Seoul…something a little different

If you like great value delicious food, plenty of soju shots, and hanging around young people, particularly students, this place might just be your spiritual home. Bursting full of character and loaded with 70s chic, Samgeori Pocha is a classic Korean-style (pocha) bar.

The unabashedly spicy tteokbokki was impossible to put down. For those who are not familiar with Korean cuisine, tteokbokki refers to of chewy rice cakes and fiery, funky gochujang chili paste together with other ingredients such as seafood, scallions and egg.

Expect fantastic retro ambience, irresistible drinks and a night you won’t forget anytime soon.  This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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October 29, 2017

Neurin Maeul Brewery & Pub, Seoul…fruit makgeolli madness paired with flavor-bursting food

I’ve read that makgeolli is a growing trend among the youth in Asia and I can see why. This fragrant milky goodness or “rice wine”, is sweet and smooth with a little tang and the right amount of carbonation to make it refreshing.

Neurin Maeul is an urban brew pub in Jongno Center One Building with an in-house brewery that you can examine through its plate-glass walls. A pub run by one of the country’s top brewers, you will find food and drinks for you to “enjoy slowly”.

The pan fried Korean style seafood pancake was incredible. It had a nice crisp all throughout. The seafood was anything but sparse and retained the perfect texture, without being overcooked or rubbery. Spicy seafood tteok-bok-ki with cheese is one of the hardest to spell Korean street foods but if you’re a tteokbokki fan the chewy rice cakes and fiery chili paste here are impossible to put down. The brewery’s pork plate marinated in house makgeolli was stunning. The meat was amazingly tender and seasoned perfectly. The assorted savory fishcake soup was refreshing, tasty and so comforting.

Needless to say, the main draw of Neurin Maeul is that it offers a wide range of makgeollis flavoured with fruits. You can get out of there nicely drunk and feeling very satiated with the good food. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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October 15, 2017

Hair Graphy, Seoul…ho-hum look

Filed under: Activities, hair salon, South Korea — Tags: , , , , — PEr @ 2:46 pm

I was in Seoul and was looking for good hair days ahead and selfie perfection. With so many celebrity-endorsed places, it can be tricky to figure out which ones are worth the (often extortionate) prices.

Hair graphy is a low-key salon with calm and a minimalist décor. The prices are reasonable. I do not have complaints about the hairstylist I was assigned, but was overall very underwhelmed with the end result and the service.

Finding a hairdresser you trust with your precious locks can be a bit of a nightmare. I left the salon with a ho-hum look. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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September 10, 2017

All Day Fresh Kitchen, Seoul… exceptional panoramas but food fairly forgettable

The view from All Day Fresh Kitchen is mesmerising. That’s if you get a window table, of course; diners within the restaurant’s interior will see little but open sky.

As for the menu, it’s  competent rather than exciting. I had the Han-U Sirloin Steak – sirloin steak, eggplant, baby carrot, garlic, sunchoke, shitake mushroom. I thought the food fairly forgettable; more safe than interesting

However, one caveat is that with terrific view, this place doesn’t offer tremendous value for money. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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August 13, 2017

Gooseul Hambak, Seoul….big on flavours.

Hambak steak is the Korean-style hamburger steak made from ground meat and served with rice or mashed potato rather than buns.

Gooseul Hambak’s original hambak is a tender and juicy steak patty bathed in rich flavoured sauce. Enhanced by a velvety yellow egg yolk and some side dishes, it makes a simple yet great meal. The price is reasonable and the service extremely quick.

Whether you are just in the area, and like me, need a bite to eat this place definitely should be on your go to list.  I dig it. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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July 30, 2017

Hanboknam, Seoul…looking like a local in Seoul

Filed under: Activities, South Korea — Tags: , , , — PEr @ 7:29 pm

Looking like a local in Seoul is surprisingly easy. One of the costumes that you want to try at least once when you visit South Korea is a hanbok. I don’t often write reviews about traditional dress-up/photo shoot but my experience with Hanboknam is worth sharing.

Wear a traditional Hanbok and get sophistically styled up for your exclusive photo shoot in the Seoul. They offer more than 300 different types and even help you with all the traditional accessories including a hat, bag, shoes and wigs. You can transform yourself into a emperor or princess. Get a few pictures in the studio or even on the rooftop. The more adventurous walk around the  alleys of Bukchon fabulously dressed in hanbok.

It’s a truly welcoming, worthwhile experience. And one, quite frankly, I’ll probably never forget. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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June 24, 2017

Korean Country Food, Seoul…Comfortable no frills atmosphere and large portions

This restaurant in Myeongdong is a good option when you want to eat authentic Korean food. The interior is simple but comfortable – the no-frills Korean atmosphere seems to exude authenticity. The service is curt and fast.

Boneless Jjimdak (boneless deep stir chicken with special medium sweet soy sauce). It was basically a stew of slowly cooked chicken thighs, potatoes, carrots, green onions, cabbage, all swimming in a delicately balanced rich soy and oyster sauce that was sweetened with rice syrup and brown sugar. Sweet.  Spicy.  Rich.  And HUGE! The three of us could not even finish a plate.

Prepare to leave stuffed. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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