Jaedong Sundubu (재동순두부)

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Jaedong Sundubu (재동순두부)
[South Korea, Seoul] I visited Jaedong Sundubu (재동순두부) recently! On the way there, I saw this...
Nearing Jaedong... and passed a Kalbi restaurant with some pretty flower display. :)
When we reached the restaurant, it was filled with local folks who worked around the area. If you need to know where to eat in Seoul, just go where there are the most locals! :D Older folks seem to like to come to this place too.
The surroundings. There's even a Fabreeze spray on the counter, just in case you think you reek of tofu smell after the meal.
This was how it looked like from where we sat. We took off our shoes and sat in the inner hall, where people sat comfortably on the floor for their meal. Experience it! It makes you feel like you're eating at home.
There were even aprons provided for patrons to use during their meal. One thing I like about Korean restaurants is that they truly want the customer to enjoy their food without having to dirty their clothes. Great job. I saw a few uncles using them though.

The All Korean Menu
Here's the all-korean menu. Beware that there are no English words at all. The serving aunties can manage a few words of 'Hi', 'Order', but don't expect too much if you're hoping to ask them more in Korean.
I will just roughly list out the names on the menu - you might want to do some research on the food if you're interested to try it out!
On the left (in order):
Chodang Sundubu
Haemul Sundubu
Dolsot Bibimbap
Saeng Samgyupsal (100g) - Raw Pork Belly
Saeng Muksal (100g) - Raw Neck meat / pork chop
On the right (in order):
Dubu chongol (Tofu combination)
Dubu kimchi
Saeng Dubu (Raw Tofu)
Dubu chon (Tofu pancake)
Pachon (Pancake)
Nukduchon (Something like bindaetteok aka mung bean pancake)
MukMuChim (Acorn jelly)
Well, for us, we ordered the Chodang Sundubu 초당순두부 (their signature) and Haemul Sundubu 해물순두부 (seafood tofu soup). Both costed 7,500 won each. Both dishes are served with rice, so there's no need for you to order rice.
Side dishes!
Haemul (Seafood) Sundubu
Mix with rice, super nice!
Tofu lovers, beware, this will cause you to be in a happy frenzy.
Chodang Sundubu
This extremely white tofu might make you go... 'huh?' when served. But you have to eat it in steps.
First, take some tofu.. or dubu.
Take some of their special served chilli.
Add the chilli to the tofu... or dubu.
Then take a big bite into it, with some rice. You'll be a happy human!
For me, I love tofu. Especially the really soft, curdy beancurd tofu. But this was really a special way to eat tofu. It was an interesting experience for me and I enjoyed it.
I chatted with the owner,Mr Kang Hong-Ryung 강홍룡, a little. When I told him I came from sunny island Singapore, he exclaimed... 'Oh, the country with Mr Lee Kuan Yew!'. Yes, he knew!
As a 'thank you' for my patronage, he happily posed a shot for me ^.^
All smiles! "My sundubu is the best!"
Take the subway to Anguk station, go up to Exit #2. Walk all the way straight and the very first alley, turn right. Walk straight in. See this sign, you're at the right place!

The alley will look like this. Jaedong Sundubu is just inside.

This is the entrance, just a thin one, so don't miss it!
I almost missed the entrance because I was expecting a bigger, wider one. The entrance is good enough for 1 to 1.5 person to enter at once, so look out for it and don't miss it!
I was able to take a namecard from them as well, so I'm uploading the map here, for you tofu-lover folks!
Feel free to click on the image to enlarge!
Seoul, Jungno-gu, Jaedong 84-11
Tel: 747-0011
My Ratings (the higher the score, the better it is!)
Food: 4 / 5
Ambience: 4.2 / 5
Bang for your buck (Value): 4 / 5
Service: 4.5 / 5

Pu Tien (莆田菜馆): Tampines Mall

Monday, 26 May 2014

Pu Tien (莆田菜馆): Tampines Mall
ARGH! I have not been blogging lately as my computer had died on me. Found out that it was due to a RAM problem. It's settled now! WHEEE! Praise the Lord!
So here I am, at Pu Tien Restaurant (莆田菜馆) as a form of celebration. Hurhur.

Such a dark photo of me taken by Melissa.
Melissa was already unhappy, waiting for Doreen's arrival for so long. haha.
While waiting, we were served with side dishes - Fried seaweed slices with peanuts, some sour radish appetizer.
The fried seaweed slices and peanuts were very shiok ! (Very nice!) And without trying the sliced white pickled radish, we told them to change it to the seaweed and peanuts for us because we just couldn't get enough of it.
Less than 10 minutes of ordering our food, it all got served up pretty quickly! AT ONCE! And yet we were thinking that we could wait for Doreen first. But anyway, it looked too good to be waiting for her, so we started munching away first. LOL.
Melissa said the Putien Lor Mee ($8.90) here was good, so we ordered the small version of it. It tasted alright, but I felt it could have been a little more flavourful. I did like how there were tons of ingredients inside, like mushrooms, vegetables, fried fish, etc.
It's also good to have it with their signature Putien chilli sauce!
100% Natural and Fresh! NAISE.
It really tasted good! So please go ahead and try this if you do patronise the restaurant.
My super favourite vegetable dish - Spinach with Eggs ($12.90 for small). The gravy is of a good consistency and has a tinted flavour of the salted eggs. The vegetables were cooked just nice. Everything about it made it a dish with flying colours.
Here's one of my favourite dishes - Sweet and Sour Pork with Lychee ($12.50 for small). This has to be one of my favourite dishes in Putien. :)
We also had stir-fried yam ($11.90 for small). It was good, but it tasted like a calorie buster as it tasted like it was coated with a fresh film of caramel.
Lastly, we ordered the shredded meat with bun ($11.70 for 3 pax portion), also another signature of the restaurant. We were served with this triangular plastic bags, and upon opening them...
They were gloves! So considerate, they even provided gloves so you won't dirty your hands eating the dish.

So... take some of this shredded meat...
Put it into the centre portion of the golden deep fried sesame topping bun...

TA-DAH! Ready to eat!
I would also like to add that I like the service of the wait staff. They were professional and friendly, despite having a full house of customers. :)
4 Tampines Central 5, #B1-27, Singapore 529510 (Tampines Mall)
Tel: (+65) 6781 2162
My Ratings (the higher the score, the better it is!)
Food: 3.8 / 5
Ambience: 3.8 / 5
Bang for your buck (Value): 3.8 / 5
Service: 4.2 / 5

Seoul Exciting 2014 - Day 12 to 14 (End of Trip!)

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Seoul Exciting 2014 - Day 12 to 14 (End of Trip!)
Here's the day 12 to 14 of my Seoul Exciting Trip in late April 2014!

What's in this post
Day 12:
- Dongdaemun Shopping
- Dakhanmari and Grilled Fish Alley
- Jeonju Shikdang (Grilled Fish)
- Jinwook Halmae Dakhanmari 

Day 13:
- Myeongdong shopping
- Paris Baquette
- Kang Ho Dong Baek Chom

Day 14:
- Caffe Bene
- Back to Singapore!

Dongdaemun for Shopping
Dongdaemun shopping is pretty interesting, because it reminds me of pasar malam, but a very packed one, and all stuffed in a building. Not just 1 building, but many. The shopping area spans a wide area. Yes, you will not be able to remember which stall you bought your clothes from, because the stalls mostly look similar! And it was too packed and claustrophobic for me but for clothes, hey, who cares? The clothes are not really that cheap to me, because I was expecting it to be even cheaper. But if you compare it with the other shops out there, yes, this place is pretty cheap!

Dakhanmari and Grilled Fish Alley / Jeonju Shikdang (Grilled Fish)
The dakhanmari and grilled fish alley starts from here. But take note, just the grilled fish itself is filling, hence you mayn't be able to have both dakhanmari and grilled fish in the same time period.

Jeonju Shikdang (Grilled fish) - The photo shows the first grilled fish stall of the Grilled Fish alley. It showed so many celebrities visiting the shop, so we decided to go with this one. Fish are grilled on top of a charcoal grill, then enjoy the tender grilled fish with soy sauce and wasabi!

Location: Dongdaemun Station Exit 9, walk 200meters and turn left when you see IBK Bank. Then walk straight for 30 seconds (past all the street stalls) and turn into the first alley on the right to see the image above.

Jinwook Halmae Dakhanmari 진옥화할매원조닭한마리
The dakhanmari alley is connected to the grilled fish alley as well, and the dish literally means 'one whole chicken'. This broth is comforting, and reminds me of homemade macaroni soup. The whole chicken is boiled and you can add on rice cakes, noodles and kimchi in the broth to make it flavourful. Also, their dipping sauce is a must try with the chicken! So addictive!

Location: 18 Jong-ro 40ga-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Myeongdong for shopping
Myeongdong is one of my favourite areas, despite the many sales staff trying to speak to me in Chinese or Japanese. Yes, it's that filled with tourists. I like to call it the cosmetics shopping area, because it has so many shops selling cosmetic products. I can spend alot whenever I come here, and if guys who are accompanying their girlfriends are bored, I suggest you can try out the street snacks here, which are pretty addictive too!

Paris Baguette 파리바게뜨
Paris Baguette are a plenty in Korea. I visited the branch in Myeongdong, and I loved it. Partially because of the company. Their wide offerings of bread are very good too. And I do enjoy their drinks, as they have many varieties! When you are there, check out the lovely cakes they have. Super pretty designs!

Location: The branch I went was along the stretch going towards Sejong Hotel. You can either exit from Myeongdong Subway Station (Exit 9 or 10) and if you walk towards Sejong Hotel, you should be able to see it easily on the left.

Kang Ho Dong Baek Jeong 강호동 백정
Baekjeong is a restaurant opened by one of the top South Korean hosts, Kang Ho-Dong (강호동). I knew of him when he was hosting popular variety show, Xman, and I was a fan of him on the show. When I saw this shop while shopping around Myeongdong last year (sometime in year 2013), I was so excited but didn't have the stomach space to give it a try. This year, I did! But it was packed with tourists, unlike last year, and I was given a queue number to wait (about 40 minutes!). By the time I got to eat this, it was about 9pm? But I didn't regret it. :)

Location: 3-3 Myeongdong 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea (19-3 Myeongdong 10-gil)

Caffe Bene (Internet Cafe)
Before boarding the plane back home, we had a simple tea and coffee here, plus a oreo waffle with icecream and whipped cream! Visitors to this cafe can also use their computers to log on to the internet.

Location: Duty-free Area, Boarding Area 3F, Concourse, Near Gate 124


View the rest of my 'Seoul Exciting' trip here: 

Seoul Exciting 2014 - Day 10 and 11

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Seoul Exciting 2014 - Day 10 and 11
Here's the day 10 and day 11 of my Seoul Exciting Trip in late April 2014!

What's in this post:
Day 10:
- Seoul Prince Hotel
- Wangbijib Restaurant
- Myeongdong Gyoza

Day 11:
- Gwangjang Market
- Osulloc Cafe
- Lotte Mart
- Bongchu Jjimdak

Seoul Prince Hotel
Honestly, this is my second stay in Hotel Prince Seoul. It is conveniently located right outside the Myeongdong subway exit. However, please note that there isn't a lift and you'll need to carry your luggage up the subway staircase if you are coming by the subway. Which was what happened to me, and half the staircase was unsheltered, so I moved my luggage up the steps in the rain.

Thankfully for us, it was a drizzle, so not too bad. I love the rooms here, it is comfy and spacious. Myeongdong shopping street starts just across the road and the convenience is truly unbeatable. We stayed in one of the Red Double A rooms. :)

Website: http://www.hotelprinceseoul.co.kr/

Wangbijib 왕비집
Wangbijib is translated to 'Royal Concubine House', to the best of my knowledge. It is a stone's throw from Myeongdong subway station, and is located on second floor of a building just directly opposite Gogong, a restaurant specialising in bibimbap (mixed rice). Wangbijib also has a speciality, and it's specialty is in grilled meat, which is right up my alley!

Location: 26 Myeongdong 8ga-gil, Jung-gu, 서울특별시 South Korea

Myeongdong Gyoza (명동교자)
Myeongdong Gyoza 명동교자 was opened since 1966, and have been going strong despite just 4 items on their menu. Their famous Kkalguksu (칼국수) aka Knife noodles is so comforting to the stomach. I also ate one of the best mandus (만두) I ever ate. :)

Click here for my full review: Myeongdong Gyoza (명동교자)
Location: 25-2, 2-ga Myeong-dong, Chung-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Gwangjang Market 광장시장
This market is an eye opener! Selling almost everything for the household, this ajumma (auntie) haven is a pleasure to walk through. From Traditional Hanboks, dried foods, ginseng products to street food, they have it all! Gwangjang Market is an interesting sight for people who love a walk through traditional markets.

Click here to read full review: Gwangjang Market 광장시장
Location: 88 Changgyeonggung-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea

O´sulloc Tea House 오설록티하우스
I love this place, it's great for its green tea desserts, and especially its cakes... visitors, you have to try this!

Location: 47-1 Myeongdong 1(il)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Lotte Mart, Seoul Subway Branch 롯데마트 서울역점

Located near Seoul Subway Station, Lotte Mart is a great place to shop for local Korean snacks and even cosmetics (if you give up going to Myeongdong). Their promotions and prices differ slightly from those at Myeongdong, so you might find better (or worse) promotions at the cosmetic shops here. However, one thing I like about it is that after shopping, I can pack my stuff and send it back home to Singapore, with their convenient EMS service parked at the corner of the store!

Location: 122 Bongnaedong 2(i)-ga Jung-gu

Bongchu Jjimdak 봉추찜닭
This is one of the well-known simmered spicy chicken, ready to rid your stomach of excess wind and good to have on rainy or cold days, because you'll be pretty much sweating it out while having this dish. And that's what I did exactly, I got into its Myeongdong (명동) branch on a rainy day.

Click here to read the full review: Bongchu Jjimdak 봉추찜닭
Location: 33-9, Myeong-dong 2-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul-si

View the rest of my 'Seoul Exciting' trip here: 
Travelling Notes & Day 1
Day 2 & 3
Day 4 & 5
Day 6 & 7
Day 8 & 9
Day 12 to 14 (End of trip)

Seoul Exciting 2014 - Day 8 and 9

Friday, 23 May 2014

Seoul Exciting 2014 - Day 8 and 9
Here's the day 8 and day 9 of my Seoul Exciting Trip in late April 2014!

What's in this post:
Day 8:
- Jilsiru Tteok Cafe
- Free Market (Flea Market Hongdae)
- Thanks Nature Sheep Cafe
- Cafe Comma

Day 9:
- Noryangjin Fisheries Market
- Kyochon Chicken

Jilsiru Tteok Cafe 떡카페 질시루
Jilsiru is a traditional Korean rice cake cafe that sells many Korean traditional snacks. There are a wide variety of rice cakes, sweets & cookies here!

Location: 30-5, Insadong-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul

Free Market (Flea Market Hongdae)
Here, you get to see so many talented artistes doing their thing. It is closed from December to February (because it's just too cold in Winter!). They open every Saturday from 1pm to 6pm (March to November). Almost everything is handmade by the artists themselves, with a creative touch, making the items they sell unique. I bought quite a few items here myself, including 2 handmade soft toys (which you will be able to see their photo in my Cafe Comma visit (scroll down))! The items here are not exactly cheap, and they only accept cash, so do take note of that when you visit.

Location: 19-3, Wausan-ro 21-gil, Mapo-gu, Seoul

Thanks Nature Sheep Cafe
When we visited this cafe, it was during a weekend afternoon, and sadly to say, it was full and there were no more seats! I heard that the owner will sometimes bring the sheep around the cafe to have a walk, but I'm not sure how, especially when the cafe seems pretty packed. Anyway, while in the end I didn't have a chance to have a coffee here, but I was glad to capture a shot of the sheep just chilling out at the corner. :)

Location: Seogyo Prugio Apartment Store B121), B1, 486, Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul-Si (Hongdae, nearest to exit 9)

Cafe Comma
This bookstore cafe is a good looker. Be amazed by the high ceilings, that remind you of Belle sliding across the bookshelves in Beauty and the Beast, in her "Bonjour" Bookshop scene, with the bookshelves much taller and grander here. As for the drinks and the dessert, they are pretty alright but I wouldn't expect much from it. A photo from my cuties (purchased from Hongdae's Free Market) in the book cafe! :)
Location: Hongik University Subway Station (Exit 3).
Once you've exited the subway exit, turn left and you should be able to see it.

Noryangjin Fisheries Market
Fresh seafood galore. Something I would suggest for you to do, especially if you are unfamiliar with Seoul's seafood dishes, is to do some research before going there, so you won't spend too much time mulling over what to buy or what to eat. I bought ingredients that will go into my Flower crab stew, and it was good. Even if you don't end up buying anything (which will be rare), just check out the various seafood here, fish out your camera and snap away!

Click here for full review: Noryangjin Fisheries Market
Location: 688 Nodeul-ro Dongjak-gu, Seoul South Korea

Kyochon Chicken
Sorry I didn't do up any review for this because I had the chicken delivered to me. But I tell you, this is one of the best fried chicken I ever had. Try their honey flavoured chicken and their original chicken. Warning, you will be hooked. You might also like to read my takeaway review here: How to order food delivery in Korea.

Website: http://www.kyochon.com/main.asp (Korean only)
Location: 362-15 Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Korea

View the rest of my 'Seoul Exciting' trip here: 
Travelling Notes & Day 1
Day 2 & 3
Day 4 & 5
Day 6 & 7
Day 10 & 11
Day 12 to 14 (End of trip)