I’ve had the pleasure of being invited into many kitchens seeing firsthand how some classic dishes are prepared, but this rare visit to the Gangnam area had me feeling that cooking Korean food can be pure art. Regretfully, this would have been amazing if I had caught this on video mode.
Like a painter brushing strokes of paint on canvas, the emo in charge of making gaeran mari splashes a thin coat of egg wash onto the open griddle. Within minutes, she seamlessly rolls them from one end to the other, all the while blocking out all the commotion and distraction from customers, like me, who marvel at her work and can’t resist taking pictures. In less than two minutes, the emo sends out the fattest, fluffiest egg omelette I’ve ever eaten. Although gaeran mari is usually a side or appetizer, I could easily eat this as a main because it’s that good.
Two other standout dishes are available: jangkobang jiigae (aka kimchi jjigae) and jangko gui (hand-grilled pork). The kimchi jjigae doesn’t have that depth and punch like Gwanghwamun Jip – despite using aged kimchi – but it’s still worth a try. The pork, on the other hand, is excellent. They are meticulously hand-grilled over coal briquettes and served with julienned onions. Sweet smokiness and very flavorful. Each dish hovers around 8,000 won, which explains why people flock here from near and far for possibly the best one-two-three combination in all of Seoul.
*Jangkobang 장꼬방 is a dialect from Jeolla Province, meaning jangdokdae 장독대 (an elevated platform for large crock pots that store traditional sauces and condiments).
Food: ★★★★ ½ out of 5 stars
Service: ★★★★ out of 5 stars
Ambiance: ★★★★ out of 5 stars
Value: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Jangkobang Mugeunji Kimchi Jjigae 장꼬방묵은지김치찌개
Address: Seocho-dong 1438-8 서초동 1438-8
Hours: Open every day 10:00 am ~ 11:00 pm
Click here for an interactive map: http://naver.me/GQwahtPl