Thursday, August 07, 2008
not taipei: Seoul, Korea
Even though I've found some great Korean restaurants in Taipei, you can't compare them to the real deal in Korea. I got to visit Seoul for the first time a few months ago for a very BRIEF trip, but I still got to explore a little bit and eat some good food.
First of all, how come there is a Krispy Kreme in Seoul and not in Taipei??
Someday soon, maybe. And how awesome and random that they were handing out FREE donuts when we walked inside- of my favorite- the original glazed donut, hot off the roller/fryer. It seemed to be good for business, as people still left with boxes of other donuts and we were licking our fingertips of the sugar.
As we wandered around Myeongdong (the Ximending in Seoul), I spotted international brands left and right, not only for clothing, but also for eateries, as well as a few cute little bistros and even a breakfast diner that we've seen pop up recently as well in Taipei. I even spotted a Coffee Bean and the Japanese tonkatsu chain Saboten which is popular in Taipei.
There's also quite a bit of street food- fried delicacies, tempura, spicy rice cakes.
I just didn't have enough time to browse and buy everything. I headed straight to my favorite stationary shop in Korea- Artbox- to get a new stash of unbearably cute bags and notebooks (you can find the stuff in Taipei, but it's much cheaper in Korea) and then it was time to meet up with my relatives for dinner.
We ended up at a bbq place called Itaewon Restaurant (on the street of the same name). Let's just say I left full and happy. With lots of meats to grill and a cold neangmyun to slurp down. You know they mean business when their url is
kalbi.com.kr. Ha ha.
Surprisingly, they can even do a decent Western breakfast. Granted, it was the Grand Hyatt in Seoul, but I've had some really bad experiences with Western breakfasts in Asia (specifically China!) The blueberry muffin was especially moist and I wanted to pocket a few for the road.
1~3 FL New Seoul Building
Myeongdong 1-ga 59-21,
112-5, Itaewon-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
GRAND HYATT SEOUL
747-7 Hannam 2-Dong, Yongsan-Ku,
Seoul, South Korea 140-738