Saturday, April 20, 2019

Le Sight Expresso and Croissanteria (Seoul, SOUTH KOREA) ★★★★☆

Le Sight Croissanteria and Coffee caught my eyes when I was taking a slow, relaxing walk around Garosugil last night. The space belonged to Amorino Gelato not too long ago but like most eateries in Sinsa, it changed hands even before we got the chance to check it out for the second time.

Le Sight is one of the few bakery cafes in Asia that dedicates itself to different flavors of croissants. These favorite viennoiserie come in various colors and the flavors range from chocolate, green tea and almond which we grow to enjoy over the years to less common gourmet flavors like truffle, rainbow pistachio and spicy pulled pork.

The space also doubles as a coffee shop offering some fine selection of tea, coffee and chocolate beverages to go with their homemade croissants.

They have a team preparing the croissants in house right behind these windows.

Valrona chocolate (7,000 won) / Cookie and cream (5,000 won) - Of course, we had to start our morning right off with some caffeine. I preferred something sweet this morning so a cup of hot Valrona chocolate to kick things off.

I didn't think we could handle 3 large croissants but it's difficult to say no to some of these flavors (especially their caramel croissant since I'm such a caramel freak).

Double caramel croissant (6,500 won) - This is just a fancy name for a salted caramel croissant but I have to give them full marks for the decoration with caramel popcorn.

It came with DIY caramel shot which was pretty cool but the croissant itself was just OK. Didn't blow me away like I thought it would.

Hawaiian yam croissant (5,500 won) - The croissant was covered with what I thought was Hawaiian yam crumbs.

Very flaky with runny sweet potato sauce oozing out from the middle. Very nice.

Spicy pulled pork croissant (6,500 won) - Easily the tastiest out of the three. This was super flaky and the lovely kick from the jalapeño was the perfect match with the spicy pulled pork. 

Whether you like croissant or not, this is highly recommended.

The free wifi here really saved the day for me giving me some time to chill and enjoy a very quiet morning before it started to snow.

Le Sight is our best find from this short trip to Seoul. Too bad we didn't get the chance to visit the place again before we left. Hopefully, it's still around when we visit Seoul again in August.

Food Rating: 6/10
Price: ₩₩₩₩
Address: 22 Dosan-daero 11-gil, Sinsa-dong, Seoul, South Korea
Closest Metro Station: Sinsa
Tel: +82 02-2254-0343

Friday, April 19, 2019

Hansung Kalguksu 한성칼국수 (Seoul, SOUTH KOREA) ★★★☆☆

It's our travel day today so we knew we won't get much time to sit down for a proper meal until last afternoon. Turned out we were right on the money.

Located in Nonhyeon-dong just a short walk from Sinsa (around 15 minutes I think), Hansung Kalguksu 한성칼국수 (or some websites spell it as Hanseong Kalguksu) is a popular noodle shop famous for their kalguksu, a Korean noodle dish consisting of handmade, knife-cut wheat flour noodles served in a large bowl of broth. They've been around for over 30 years and are very popular among the locals.

The noodle shop is hidden in the basement level behind these stairs. It's not the easiest place to find but once you locate Kookmin Bank, it's just right next door.

A score of 8.6 in Foursquare is generally a good indication of a very good restaurant so we decide to take a look.

A full house at 6pm, another indication that it's a restaurant with very good food!

We finally got settled down in a small room at the back of the restaurant. By now, I was starving.

Korean poached pork slice (Small: 25,000 won) - Succulent and definitely not bad.

We had it wrapped with lettuce after adding kimchi and spicy chilli sauce to the mix.

Assorted Korean pancakes (24,000 won) - A house specialty here. It came with cod fish, zucchini, shrimp and oyster.

I thought the zucchini pancake was really juicy, almost like a tempura.

But there's no question which was the tastiest in the platter - the oyster pancake. It's a little like our Chinese style oyster omelette but the oysters were noticeably bigger and creamier. I couldn't get enough of these.

Korean dumplings in clear beef broth (11,000 won) - I couldn't believe we passed on their signature kalguksu but none of us wanted noodles at this hour.

This tasted exactly the same as our Chinese pork dumpling with loads of minced pork and vegetables. Pretty hearty dish like the ones grandmothers made for their grand kids at home back in China.

We always emphasize on the fact that we want to eat like locals when we travel so it's good to put it to work this afternoon. Now that we were fed, we are all set for our shopping spree in Sinsa!

Food Rating: 5.5/10
Price: ₩₩₩
Address: 735 Eonju-ro, Nonhyeon 2(i)-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Closest Metro Station: Gangnam-gu Office / Hak-dong
Tel: +82 02-544-0540

Baek Mi Dang 百味堂 at 1964 Building (Seoul, SOUTH KOREA) ★★★☆☆

We were supposed to be looking for our dinner spot for tonight but accidentally bumped into the lobby of 1964 Building which houses the corporate office of our beloved Korean ice-cream producer, Baek Mi Dang (百味堂).

Jelloman is such a fan so she decided to check out their café on the first floor.

What looks like an employee canteen at first glance turns out to be a dessert café for the general public but judging from this scene, not many people know about the place at all.

The menu looks exactly the same as the one we have in Hong Kong (which Jelloman could easily memorize) and no exclusive.

Jelloman was a little disappointed so instead of sitting down to enjoy some sweet treats, we just grabbed a small cup of milk ice-cream on the go.

The 1964 Building is not that easy to find without a GPS but hopefully the map below helps.

Food Rating: 5.5/10
Price: ₩₩₩
Address: 8 Eonju-ro 149-gil, Nonhyeon 2(i)-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Closest Metro Station: Gangnam-gu Office / Hak-dong
Tel: +82 02-2195-6842