Although summer has officially passed us by, another food ritual that I have every summer is riding bikes with a friend to Goyang (a small town just on the outskirts of Seoul) all to enjoy a refreshing, healthy, and hearty bowl of Chogye Bimbim Guksu 초계비빔국수 (Spicy Mixed Noodles w Shredded Chicken). This is my second consecutive summer making the trek over (about 30km round trip from Yongsan) and the food only gets better with each visit. Unlike other places that I’ve tried (and been disappointed with), here you’re greeted with a huge bowl loaded with thin wheat flour noodles, shavings of fresh veggies, and shredded chicken in a unique sauce that balances between sweet, spicy, tangy, and fruity. It’s the perfect dish for summer. Initially, I thought there’d be no way I could handle the entire dish by myself, but after the first bite I found myself addicted and close to finishing the entire bowl. In hindsight, if it weren’t for the extra order of galbi mandu (marinated beef dumplings) – which I highly recommend – the formidable feat could’ve been accomplished. For those who finish off both, I’m pretty sure eating challenges might be right up your alley.
Another signature dish is Chogye Guksu, which is similar to bibim except it’s bathed in a slushy chicken broth. Both are equally delicious, so I always make sure to take a friend (or gf) and share the best of both offerings (plus mandu!). Other items are available, but their bread and butter are the noodle dishes. Guksu varieties run a respectable 7,000 won and galbi mandu for 4,000 won.
Note: Gana-ahn Guksu is hard to reach by subway (Kangmae Station on the relatively new Jungang Line being the closest station). However, there are direct buses that stop in Shinchon, Hongdae, and Hapjeong Station. Take bus #921 and get off at Haengju Sanseong Ipgu. Walk through the underpass and the restaurant will appear to your left. If bus rides aren’t your thing, biking is a great alternative as the bike path is close to the restaurant.
Food: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Service: ★★★★ out of 5 stars
Ambiance: ★★★★ out of 5 stars
Value: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Gana-ahn Guksu (가나안국수)
102-6 Haengjunae-dong, Deokyang-gu, Goyang (고양시 덕양구 행주내동 102-6)
Hours: Open every day 9am~10pm
Click here for an interactive map: http://naver.me/IG2As5ep