On Jeju Island, there are quite a few restaurants specializing in healthy (aka “well-being) food options with the ocean being the main source of fresh ingredients. Of course, it’s important to eat healthy when there are so many unhealthy options out there these days, but finding a restaurant that serves both delicious and healthy options is hard to come by. So it was a nice surprise when my partner and I stumbled upon another great restaurant named Harbang Milmyun in Ora-dong that serves up healthy and tasty dishes at more than reasonable prices.
Harbang Milmyun serves up only five dishes using the superfood seaweed variety called tot (hijike) in all of their dishes minus the suyuk (boiled pork). And, surprisingly, they do it well. The bomal kalguksu (noodles w sea snails) includes a mixture of regular flour noodles and tot-infused noodles that was thick, hearty, and invigorating. Although I’m not a big fan of noodles and sea snails in general, they did a nice job balancing all the ingredients and textures to make each bite very interesting—imagine soft, slippery noodles; chewy, slightly rubbery bomal snails, and silky seaweed varieties. The bibim myun (sweet n spicy noodles w vegetables) was another winner that I personally loved. It had all the right flavors in the sauce (sweet, spicy, kind of tangy) and the vegetables were perfectly, thinly shaven to get that much-needed crunch with each bite. No doubt that this will be the perfect dish, along with their mul milmyun (spicy noodles in cold broth), in the warmer months just ahead. Lastly, the wang mandu—kind of resembling baby brains?—were indeed “king” of this meal. I’m usually anal about waiting until the entire meal is out to get a quick picture, but one taste test of these bad boys had us eating like food-depraved beggars. The mandu was generously filled with Jeju pork and vegetables and eggs for the perfect complement to the other dishes. All in all, we not only finished our meal feeling full as could be, but we were happy to finally enjoy a meal that was thoroughly healthy and handmade to perfection.
Just a side note, there are a few signs on the wall describing the prowess of their main ingredients tot and bomal, so it’s only fitting that I describe their impressive health benefits. Tot, resembling tree-like seaweed with elongated bulbs on its stem, is loaded with minerals, calcium, fiber, iron, and iodine. It is supposed to lower cholesterol, prevent osteoporosis, hypertension, obesity, diabetes, AND has a positive effect against STDs (sexual transmitted diseases). Bomal, resembling spiral-pyramid shaped sea snails, is full of protein, literally fat-free, and prevents osteoporosis, liver cirrhosis AND hangovers! I’m not really confident about their STD claims, but everything else sounds reasonable. 😀
Food: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Service: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Ambiance: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Value: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Harbang Milmyun 하르방밀면
2451-5 Ora-1dong, Jeju City (제주시 수덕9길 67지번노형동 2514-8)
Hours of Operation: 10am ~ 8pm, closed on national holidays
Click here for directions: http://me2.do/Gu8VyOJG
Click here for their Nohyung-dong (Jeju City) location: http://me2.do/FH3JHp42
Click here for their Moseulpo (Seogwipo) location: http://me2.do/x13YrdIu