I read quite a few restaurant reviews and am always impressed and envious of how the authors manage to describe the flavors and tastes to such a degree that it makes me wonder if they all truly have that sensitive of a palate. I appreciate good food, good service, and a good atmosphere. Cleanliness, cost, and location are also important, and so I do applaud the efforts involved in finding that perfect meal, in that perfect place and then sharing it with us. But don’t expect that from me. I tend to review the places that a regular person would go and as such the basic criteria is would I look forward to eating there again.
While visiting Gangnam a few weeks ago there was no shortage of choices of places to eat, from high end fancy restaurants to those owned by celebrities, or their close family members. You could eat at a different restaurant twice a day for months without running out of choices. (Seriously, Seoul has more restaurants per person than almost anywhere on earth, and Gangnam has a good proportion of said restaurants.) So why am I recommending this particularly restaurant tucked just off the main drag when there are so many amazing choices available? For a few reasons including the wide variety of customers. There were a couple of delivery men sat in a corner, a group of well dressed company workers, a few middle aged people, a very smartly dressed lady, a couple of suits, some teens, and us as the only non Koreans. Most tables were occupied even though we arrived a little past lunch time. Everyone else seemed local and familiar with the place which is always a good sign. The service was quick and even though the staff spoke very little English the ordering went smoothly. The atmosphere was nice, the decorations quirky, and it had a nice relaxed feel. The building itself was a little older than the surrounding ones and it looked like it had once been someone’s home. The prices were extremely reasonable, especially considering it was in Gangnam, with my meal being under ten dollars.
I ordered the plain tonkatsu and my daughter the cheese one, and both were excellent, served piping hot with a wonderful crisp batter on the outside and moist succulent pork on the inside. As is usual it came with a number of sides, as well as a really light and refreshing shredded vegetable salad. I ate every last bite, which means it really was good as I’m kinda skinny without that large of an appetite.
You may ask why we went to a tonkatsu, which is originally a Japanese dish, restaurant while in Korea, and the answer is the same as why does Korea have so many coffee places and Italian restaurants. Korea has a wonderful knack of taking good food from around the world and somehow making it their own, and often making it better. Tonkatsu is a very popular dish in Korea and has become a regular choice for many.
And to answer the big question. Would I eat there again? Yes I would, it was a delicious meal, in a nice place, for a decent price. What more can you ask for?
The address is 62-14, Cheongdam-1dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul-si, 135-948, Korea. It is one building back from the main KStar road down a small side street between a Banyan Tree Club and Spa (not the main one which is near Namsan) and a shop called Tehome.
Have a great day everyone.
Photo credits me and Elle Marzec. Please do not copy or repost without permission and accreditation.