Recommended by my foodie friend Irene, we went to Divino Ristobar after a long week of work. We started with a bottle of pinot grigio recommended by Joe the waiter. The wine was crisp and very refreshing and good value at 49,000 won.
The place is cozy. It is candlelit and the open patio lets in a bit of the nightlife on the busy Hongdae Streets.
As a starter we had the Sorrentina Pizza (21,900). Crust was nice, but needed a bit of salt. This white pizza had mozzerella, prosciutto, shaved parmigiano, and rucola lettuce. I liked it, but the rucola was basically shredded on put on the pizza, so the bitter leaf was a bit tiring after a while. I like the option of having a whole leaf so I can eat it separately or together.
We then had the steak special. It was cooked medium rare and topped with various greens, tomato, and dressed with red wine vinegar and olive oil. Not a bad dish. Lots of meat and the leaves were a nice touch. I wouldn’t say the the dish felt unified for the flavors seemed to be put together. Regardless, they used good ingredients, so this dish worked for me.
After the steak we had an apple cake and this was divine. I absolutely loved it. The cake was a moist (a tad too crumbly though) and it had nice hints of apple. The cream sauce they served with it had flecks of vanilla bean, so it was a nice touch.
|Apple Cake at Divino Ristobar in Hongdae, Seoul, Korea|
|Tiramisu at Divino Ristobar in Hongdae, Seoul Korea|
That dessert was so good that we had to get their tiramisu that was served in a martini glass. Meh…I wish we had ended with the cake. It wasn’t bad. The whipped marscapone was fluffy (but a tad too watery), the chocolate flecks were nice. The problem was the coffee they used to dip the lady fingers in were way too bitter. It was overpoweringly bitter.
The service at Divinos is top notch and a place that makes you feel like a friend visiting. The owner checked in during our meal to ask us how we were and then cleared everything away. The waiter was very attentive and made sure we had everything that we needed. Oh, and they spoke in English, so that was nice as well.
I was told the chef was on vacation, so he had his sous chef working. The sous chef did an adequate job, but I want to see what the chef can do. I’ll be heading back.
Hongdae, Seoul, Korea
Recommended dishes: the pizza, the apple tart
Directions: Go out Sangsu Station exit 2 and walk towards Hongdae. Make a right before Samgaree Pocha (it’s the big red tent). Walk about a block, you’ll see it on your left on the second floor.
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