Kimchi [김치]: a traditional side dish made from salted and fermented vegetables, most commonly napa cabbage and Korean radishes, with a variety of seasonings including chili powder, scallions, garlic, ginger, and salted seafood.
I don’t know about you, but planning my meals took a big part of both my time and energy.
It goes without saying that we all have drooled at least once over the delicious food shown to us through Korean dramas and variety shows. Yet, you and I both know that a simple burger will eventually suffice.
Today, I’m going to share with you the various culinary tastes that you’ll encounter in Korea.
From Bulgogi & Dak-Galbi to Bibimbap, as well as a selection of various types of Korean noodles (Ramyeon, Jajangmyeon, Japchae, Kalguksu, Naengmyeon …), there are way too many Korean dishes for me to list and for you to taste.
Overall, there are Korean traditional restaurants everywhere, and just like any other cuisine, some dishes taste better depending on where you decide to have your lunch or dinner.
Korean Street Food
I gotta say, Korea’s street food is one of the best appetizers in the world.
A mixture of spicy, salty, and sweet: tasting some of the famous amuse-bouches (such as Kimbap, Tteokbokki, Hotteok, fish cakes, Eggbun …) will sign you up for quite the gastronomic ride.
By now, I’m pretty sure that you all know about Pepero, but it’s not the only Korean snack out there. Also, since making a list of Korean snacks would be endless, I’m just going to tell you where to find them instead.
Basically, convience stores are your best buds, especially when you’ve been walking for a while and hunger starts knocking on your door. While there are many grocery stores here and there, GS25, CU, and 7-Eleven are the best candidates to offer you the largest choice of snacks.
Now, all you have to do is to follow your taste buds and satisfy your sweet tooth.
Korean Cafes & Fast-Food Chains
As I roamed the streets, I noticed that there are countless cafes around the city. I’m sure we all heard about Koreans’ addiction to coffee, but this is a whole other level of dedication.
Plus, Korea’s pastry selection is truly one of a kind. I didn’t get the chance to try all of the Cafes, especially the themed ones, but I am very satisfied with the ones I’ve been to (Sulbing, A twosome place & Dal.Komm), and I can safely recommend them to you.
As for food, the collection is not as wide as it is for cafes, but there are a couple of brands that are worth the hype: based on a fair share of testimonies, Kyochon is the only Korean Fried Chicken franchise you need to know, and Ashley can be your buffet of choice.
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After a while, the triangle Kimbap is going to take its toll on you. Thankfully, Korean food is not the only thing on the menu.
When I say international cuisine is available in Korea, I literally mean it. Even Moroccan restaurants exist, and apparently they taste just like home. Of course, you can skip the nostalgia and head for other types of cuisine: Indian, Thai, Japanese, Chinese, French, Italian … and the list goes on.
Other Dessert & Restaurant Chains
Let’s say you’ve had a long day, and you’re not looking for any culinary adventures. Shall we go back to basic?
McDonalds, Subway, Pizza Hut, Dunkin’ Donuts, Baskin’ Robbins : everybody knows these brands. However, the beauty of having an international franchise in Korea implicates small customizations on the menu at times.
For example, McDonalds is serving Bulgogi burger. Furthermore, it replaced the universal Filet-O-Fish with the shrimp burger instead.
Personally, I tried a little bit of everything. Granted, I didn’t get to properly enjoy my meals because I was torn between finding Halal food and triggering my idiopathic allergy, but the food was exquisite nevertheless.
To sum up, you’re not going to starve in Korea. So, unless you’re a picky eater, you’re going to be just fine!
That’s all for today! Feel free to contact me if you have any questions, and stay tuned for more Hallyu gems. Until I see you next time, thank you for reading me.