Snacks in Gangnam: Ring Bar Ball (링바볼)

Seoul ironically has no shortage of Auntie Anne’s, but if you’re near Gangnam and feeling for something new, I highly suggest Ring Bar Ball. Awkward names aside, I was drawn to this place by the alluring smell of fresh dough baking and couldn’t resist giving it a shot! Continue reading “Snacks in Gangnam: Ring Bar Ball (링바볼)”

Traditional Markets in Seoul: Mangwon Market (망원시장)

Those looking for a traditional market experience near the Hongik University area will have quite a fun time visiting Mangwon Market (Mangwon Shijang 망원시장). I’ve always had a great time trying all the cheap eats they have to offer. There’s lots of traditional ingredients that you may not find at the typical Home Plus or Emart, such as dried persimmons (geotgam 곳감). I highly suggest it if you want to experience a traditional market in Korea that’s near Hongdae! Continue reading “Traditional Markets in Seoul: Mangwon Market (망원시장)”

Seoul Cheap Eats: 마루가메 제면 (Marukame Japanese Udon)

Marukame Udon has been my go-to Japanese noodle house for quite a while now. I’ve been going to 3 of their chains across Seoul and have been more than satisfied with all of them (less so the Hongdae location). They make all their noodles from scratch, giving them a distinct chewiness, while still being extremely affordable. They appear to be quite an international chain with even a store in Hawaii!

If you’ve read my blog for a while now, you’ll probably know that I’m quite passionate about Japanese noodles. While the anchovy-based Korean udon broth is all fine and dandy, I’m more accustomed to the katsuo-based Japanese broth. To me, it’s much bolder and cleaner (read as “not fishy”) tasting and also compliments the noodles much better. Places I’ve tried have been more or less satisfactory, but with Marukame I finally found what I’ve been looking for.
Continue reading “Seoul Cheap Eats: 마루가메 제면 (Marukame Japanese Udon)”

Seoul Cheap Eats: 미정국수 0410 (Mijeong Guksu 0410)

Looking to grab a late night snack Korean style? Look no further than 미정국수(Mijeong Guksu)0410. Why the awkward name? Perhaps this place is so popular that there are at least 410 chains? I have no idea, but what I am sure about is that this place serves delicious noodles on the cheap 24 hours a day. This place is the go-to restaurant for everyone, anytime, unless you have a gluten allergy of course. I’ve always wanted to share these type of noodle shops as I’ve been a regular to a similar restaurant 5 years ago. There are TONS of chains, but I’ll be talking particularly about the Hongdae location (홍대점).  Continue reading “Seoul Cheap Eats: 미정국수 0410 (Mijeong Guksu 0410)”

Seoul Cheap Eats: 돈텐동식당 (Japanese Noodles and Rice Bowls)

I have a real weakness for Japanese soup noodles, so it’s not surprising that 돈텐동식당 (Dontendong Shikdang) caught my attention the moment I laid eyes on it. They have a  pretty unpretentious looking storefront, resembling one of those locally owned noodle shops in Japan that I’ve always fantasized about going to since my high school days. Somewhat disappointingly, they’re actually a small franchise, but at least the price seemed reasonable and the pictures outside looked tempting. When I met my friend in Sinchon (신촌) to eat lunch, I knew I had to take the opportunity to finally check it out! Continue reading “Seoul Cheap Eats: 돈텐동식당 (Japanese Noodles and Rice Bowls)”

Seoul Cheap Eats: 자연밥상 (Korean Buffet Restaurant)

If you’re looking to chow  down on unnecessarily large amounts of food on the cheap, try out this Korean buffet, “자연밥상”. 자연밥상 (pronounced “jayeon babsang”) translates something to the notion of “natural meal”, which is somewhat ironic as there’s nothing natural about consuming food to the point your stomach can burst! The main selling point is their 6000 won lunch special, with dinner costing 9000 won. This review is only covering their lunch offering. Continue reading “Seoul Cheap Eats: 자연밥상 (Korean Buffet Restaurant)”

Seoul Cheap Eats: 타꼬방 (Takkobang)

Takoyaki is an amazing snack for those in the mood for a little pick-me-up. For those who don’t know, takoyaki (타꼬야끼/たこ焼き) is actually a Japanese snack consisting of small pancake balls stuffed with octopus pieces topped with sauce and other toppings to make for one very flavor-packed experience. You can grab them fairly quickly as long as there’s no line. One of my favorite spots for takoyaki is 타꼬방(Takkobang) Continue reading “Seoul Cheap Eats: 타꼬방 (Takkobang)”

Seoul Cheap Eats: Pizza School (피자스쿨)

Looking for cheap pizza but don’t have a Costco nearby? Pizza School (피자스쿨)  may be your salvation in a land notorious for expensive pizzas. They may not be nearly as good as Costco, but they’ve been a long time staple for people like me who don’t want to spend a premium on pizza. To get an idea, you can get a reasonably large 12″ whole cheese pizza for only 5000 won! Continue reading “Seoul Cheap Eats: Pizza School (피자스쿨)”

Seoul Cheap Eats: 봉주르정식(Bonjour)

봉주르정식 (Bonjour) was a consistent staple of mine when I used to live in Hongdae (홍대) and with good reason. This type of restaurant is called a 백반(Baek Ban) which roughly translates into a home-style restaurant. They serve a set menu that changes daily and the dishes have a very homemade feel to it. That isn’t to say it is bad; in fact, it appropriately falls into the category known as comfort food. The best part is it costs a measly 3500 won and you can virtually get unlimited refills on pretty much anything! Continue reading “Seoul Cheap Eats: 봉주르정식(Bonjour)”

Cheap Eats: Hongdae Ice Cream Waffle Shack

As seen in my tour of Noryangjin, ice cream waffles are a pretty hot street food item. Especially during a nice day, I can’t resist getting one. The best ice cream waffles I know of are located in Hongdae, right next to the playground and the front of the campus.This place may be a tad hard to find as it doesn’t have a name, but if you go to the main entrance of Hongdae, it will be west of it. This place has by far the best ice cream waffles Continue reading “Cheap Eats: Hongdae Ice Cream Waffle Shack”