|Basil Cream Croquette at Fingerfood Bar|
A croquette is the French deep fried pasty that is often filled with a bit of meat or fish and potatoes. The outside is crispy with nice bread crumbs and the filling is usually greasy spoon goodness. When I first came to Korea these were my go-to dishes because I worked at an academy and I would often have 10 minutes between classes to grab a snack dinner. The flavors varied but it could be kimchi and pork, spicy chicken, and curry. Now the curry ones were often the yellow packaged curry mix that has a slight semblance to real stuff mixed with a ton of MSG.
I got tired of them pretty fast and I never looked back. Well, that was until I discovered Fingerfood Bar (길모통이 칠리차차) near the backside of Hongdae (out Hapjeong Station Exit 5). The ajumma that runs the place is a little quirky and sassy. When we asked her if her basil and cream croquette was good she answered, "Of course. Everything I make is good." Finally, someone gives a definite answer at a restaurant!
We ordered a mix of her popular croquettes with beer: tomato, curry, and basil cream. The curry one was fine, but nothing different from what I had before. The basil cream was subtle and delicious. I didn't expect the creamy, basil flavor in a fried croquette. The best one was the Tomato croquette. The rich tomato and herb flavor was totally droolworthy. The secret to the croquettes is the barley. They add nice texture and pop to the croquettes.
Also, the place is very clean and well organized which shows the love and care the cook puts into the food. The prices are like what you would get at a streetfood cart (croquettes start at 1,400 won and you can get tteokbokki for 3,000 won). If you are thirsty, they have beer, mojitos, campari soda, or coconut milk.
Totally chill and very good eats!
Directions: Go out Hapjeong Station exit 5 and make a right at the GIANT (brand name) Bicycle shop. Go down the street for about 7 minutes and you'll see it on the left.