Original: Seoul Eats/ Blogger Version

Mac N Cheese Food Porn!

So, Paul Ajosshi says that I have contributed to his waste line by suggesting the amazing mac n cheese at Macaroni Market. I am proud to have done so. So I was reading his article on Macaroni Market and I was utterly blown away by his pictures.

Paul, you have some mad photography skills!

The two pictures above are from his website. The first one looks like a painting and the second is food porniffic.

See more of his picts here!

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Original: Seoul Eats/ Blogger Version

Korean Food Article in the Wall Street Journal

Korean Food is getting a lot of press these days. Here’s an article in the Wall Street Journal.
The New Hot Cuisine: Korean

The noted Chicago eatery Blackbird has kimchi on the menu, and California Pizza Kitchen is developing Korean barbecue beef pizza. In Los Angeles, crowds are lining up for street food from a pair of Korean taco trucks called Kogi. The slightly sour-tasting Korean frozen yogurt served at the Pinkberry and Red Mango chains has inspired many imitators.

Redolent with garlic, sesame oil and red chili peppers, Korean food is suddenly everywhere.

It’s even on the packaged-food industry’s radar. “Last year, mostly what we saw in our database was Korean food at authentic ethnic places,” says Cindy Ayers, vice president of Campbell’s Kitchen, which tracks trends for new-product development at Campbell Soup Co. This year, she says, she’s seen Korean flavors appearing on both high-end menus and in casual, nonethnic restaurants in cities like Minneapolis and Des Moines, Iowa — a sign Korean is starting to catch on.

Go here to read the rest of the article

Here are some restaurants around the world that are using Korean ingredients and techniques in their dishes.

Le Bernardin, New York
[Le Bernardin]
Le Bernardin

At his Michelin-starred seafood restaurant, Eric Ripert serves a progressive tasting of Kumamoto oysters on ice with flavored jellies. The final bite is a Kumamoto topped with a cube of kimchi jelly, made by pureeing and straining kimchi, then adding agar agar to the juice. “I use it more and more as a condiment,” says Mr. Ripert, who was introduced to Korean food through some of his line cooks. “I like to add it just to elevate and to create some contrast with our dishes.”"

155 W. 51st St., 212-554-1515, le-bernardin.com

French Laundry, Yountville, Calif.

Thomas Keller’s flagship restaurant serves dotori mook, a mild, jello-like food made of ground acorns. It’s a common side dish in Korea, served sliced and with a sauce made of soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, scallions and red pepper flakes. At the restaurant, the mook is custard-like and made with coffee and milk, and has been paired with persimmon and black truffles. “The flavors are earthy, kind of nutty,” says chef de cuisine Corey Lee.

6640 Washington St., 707-944-2380, frenchlaundry.com

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Worst Restaurant Ever!

The all American Diner in Itaewon is just awful. Sure, the food isn’t all that bad, but waiting 1 hour and 30 minutes for a Chicken Fried Steak is just ridiculous. My friend was hoping to eat before he went to a soccer match, but he had to leave before he could be served. He was pissed and rightly so; I would be too.

This isn’t the first time this happened. The last time I was there, we placed an order for a hamburger to go and they forgot to start cooking it so we had to wait after our meal to get it. And another time, I was with a big group of people and they cooked everyone’s meal except for one.

I’ve said it before, it’s a restaurant that needs to work on its service. I mean even trying to pay was painful. It look like a couple of minutes for each transaction.

The question is, why do I keep going back?


Oh, and other people keep on wanting to go there. It’s a good space for big groups because they have a lot of room. Plus, the concept is great. Now they must work on giving better service or it’s just not going to make it.

Original: Seoul Eats/ Blogger Version

Quick Bites

This will be published in the March issue of Eloquence Magazine.

Gostiny Dvor
There is a prominent Russian population in Seoul, and you have been wondering where they eat. Once you walk out Dongdaemun Stadium Exit 7, you’ll be transported to little Russia. Gostiny Dvor has exotic dishes like Pelmeni (lamb mandu), Soyanka (a warm, piquant sausage soup), and Selyodka pod shuboj (a layered dish with beets, potatoes, smoked fish and cheese.) Delicious. #2275 7501.

Chez Simon
Samcheongdong has the right to be a little pretentious. It is the place where the rich and elite live and they should know good food, right? Chez Simon is up and at the a little alley, on the raised terraces of houses in the center of Samcheongdon. It has a set menu for lunch and dinner. It’s chef’s choice, and it’s reservations only. This French trained chef will not disappoint. http://blog.naver.com/chezsimon #130 1045.

It’s like a Chipotle Mexican Grill that has been transported to Seoul. This kinetic Mexican joint boasts fresh ingredients and seasoning. It’s a nice place to go for a quick burrito for lunch or a taco for dinner. It’s a build your own burrito/taco place, so you can mix and match the ingredients that you want. Sadly, I didn’t see any tomatillo salsa on the menu. (Hint!) www.tomatillo.co.kr #734 9225

If you happen to be by Gyodae station, exit 12, I recommend you seek out iBake. It looks like another cookie cutter sandwich shop, but look closely behind the counter. You’ll see a big commercialized oven, a huge dough mixer, and near it a quaint kitchenaide mixer. Over by the bread racks, you’ll find silpat and silicon gloves. This is equipment used by pros-used by people in the know. The steak, grilled vegetable, and mozzerella and tomato sandwiches are well seasoned and laid on fresh baked bread. www.ibake.co.kr #582 5442

Original: Seoul Eats/ Blogger Version

Quick Bites and Drinks: Hongdae

Note: No Side has closed

Quick Bites and Drinks: Hongdae
No Side: Hiroshima Okonomiyaki
Chefs should be serious and when they get angry when you are taking pictures of their food, then you know there must be a special reason. The chef trained in Hiroshima to learn his craft and he brought what he has learned to Hongdae. This popular place has shrimp, samgyeopsal, squid, and cheese for toppings. The secret is the use of Japanese style ramen noodles. www.noside.co.kr 02-3143-5963. CLOSED

It’s a Chinese Restaurant in Hongdae that’s all right. The interior is classy and it’s a good place for a date or for a business luncheon. I had the duck dish and it is like a moo shoo pork but with Vietnamese rice paper rolls. The Chinese food is not the typical style you’d find in Korea. I don’t recall seeing Jja jja myeong on the menu. 02-325-3114.

Excellent Korean restaurant that is right next to the main park in Hongdae. The side dishes are so good that the restaurant won’t give you utensils to eat them until the main course comes out. Their bulgogi, sundubu, and nokdu jeon are excellent. 02-334-1866.

Coffee Prince
Named after the very popular MBC drama, you can see the place that started the whole barista craze in Korea. It’s hidden behind Ho Bar and you have to make a left at a large picture of a cat. Inside you’ll find a beautiful 2 story café that is beautifully decorated. The coffee is top notch and you can have your Coffee Prince or Princess serve you. www.coffeeprincekorea.com 02-786-4018.

Club Evans
This is the best Jazz club in Hongdae. The venue has amazing energy and vibe. The patrons have very high expectations and the musicians all seem to thrive off it. On Friday and Saturday nights, there is not a seat left in the house. This is a place that will definitely impress any guest you may have. So go here early, get a martini and get ready to listen to some jazz. There is a cover charge. www.clubevans.com 02-337-8361.

Samgori Poja
The red tent where Jangdari-gil and Wausan-gil meet has been a mainstay in Hongdae. It has standard tent food fare. You can get great Egg Omelets (Gaeran Roll) or Kimchi with Tofu. Get your soju and maekju on here.

Club Palm
When Club Evans is totally packed, a good second option is Club Palm. It’s a smaller bar, but they also have excellent jazz acts. It’s right across from the park. Be sure to call and make a reservation. www.clubpalm.co.kr 02-336-9016.

Studio 80’s
Sometimes the millennium is just too much to handle so you wanna cocoon back to the 80’s. A great place to do this is at Studio 80’s. The place is loaded with vinyl LPs and the dance floor starts to fill up once the Karma Chameleon gets a rocking. It’s down from Sangsu Station exit 1. Make a left right before the 7-11. 02-332-7335.