why studying in Korea can be a bad experience.

October 27th, 2014

so today, the most absurd thing happened.

the fight of classes for professors whom do not even teach well but only grade well is another absurd thing, but the thing about competitive grading makes everything so much crazier. so like me, this semester I went into 4 classes which absolutely isn’t easy, plus the professor puts on a 85~90% floor to getting an A already sounds pretty daunting to us students. on top of that, 2 of them had to make the exam super difficult. and one gave us a high floor AND also told us that he will give 50% of the students C+. I don’t know if these professors are sadists or what, but for the very same class, another student might work 50% less hard than us and still secure an A+. totally crazy yes?

but today, I found out that I got myself in a French class for beginners where half of the students pretty much learned French for years and thinks the exam was a piece of cake. I am totally fine with that. not until when I got 86% and I am number 8. counting from the worst. this thing about the absurdness of competitive grading is that no matter how good everyone is, someone must be sacrificed. and it isn’t even fair. when you apply for a job and when the interviewer (well in Korea they do) asks why did you get a C+ for an exam, you can’t exactly tell them the real reason because by the time you graduate you probably wouldn’t remember why and they will never know that you actually aced it but because everyone else gotten close to 100% so it made you the sacrificial sheep in the class. dear Universities in Korea, I know rules are rules, but when everyone is above 85% you got to do something about it. maybe not give everybody A’s but at least a B+. to be fair. I mean, they should make it possible for lecturers to appeal when such a situation arise when even the lecturer felt it was unfair to give students with good grades a bad grade.

so how to score in Korea? well, fight for the classes which gives good grades while you learn almost nothing from them and graduate learning nothing OR you can pick to challenge yourself to classes where you’d learn things but might not secure you an interview.

oh did I mention? to work in Korea (if you graduate from a Korean Uni.) you need to get through a first stage exam and screening to prove that you are illegible for their exams. hardcore much? well this is how difficult it is to get a job in Korea for all the Koreans. they are beginning to make people lose faith in doing something they love but instead, turn everyone into robots.

also, today I heard something very meaningful from a gyopo (Korean brought up overseas) classmate about how architecture changed from beautiful detailed designs to minimalistic. that how when people do what they love they create much better products but get paid peanuts while minimalists earns a lot of money with their simple designs. it’s sad how everyone is losing faith in doing what they love to do and is turning into such robots whom buried their talents with money. it goes for many people including myself and I think I really do need to give myself some deep thoughts.

anyhow, I have no idea what I’m going to do, but I will survive.

Remicone @ Sinsa

October 22nd, 2014

HELLO MY DEAR READERS! I know it have been very long. I am still surviving. just done with my exams and I am here to introduce you a popular ice cream store in Seoul located at the “Paris” of Seoul; Garuso-gil, Sinsa-dong.

turn into the alley next to L’Occitane and you’d eventually find this unique ice cream store called REMICONE.

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and apparently, it’s by no-name. reminds me of spirited away. hahahahaha.

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so when you walk into the store you’d see pretty waitresses dressed in write.

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everythings in test tubes and flasks and all. very special. that take-away kit. I want that too. it looked exactly like an experiment kit.

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it was exactly like an ice cream lab!

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want to know how your ice cream look like? check them out on the display!

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here are the prices for your reference.  their special menu’s look really good! like.. macameleon and cheese mountain. but since it’s my first time here, thunder bomb please!

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thunder bomb, 6,100won. not cheap for such a tiny cone of ice cream but the presentations so worth it hehe. my friend commented that it looked like a grandma

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with le thunder bomb ice cream! it literally explodes in your mouth. it’s actually much better than what I’ve expected and I am really glad I tried the combo! it isn’t exactly my favourite but it is indeed yummy and different. you might be surprised looking at that huge… fluff? of cotton candy on top of the ice cream but it is going to be just right enough for the small cup of ice cream. the explosions in your mouth might shock you at first but the tingling of it will make you happy.

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one was too little so I went ahead for another one.

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and my second ice cream!

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CARVIAR honey. well I am quite disappointed with this one. =X. I was so curious first because it is pink, second because it’s.. CARVIAR!!! but it is no carviar. if you’re Malaysian or from HK, you’d probably know what “lolo” is. that’s exactly it. mixed with honey. it’s still great but I would prefer putting in a honey comb which was and is still my favourite when it comes to milk ice cream!

verdict? it’s good overall. if you’re in the area don’t be a cheapskate and go try it! but it isn’t cheap comparing it to its size. it’s not really enough to be honest. for a sweet tooth like me at least. other honey milk ice creams felt a bit more filling somehow. but whatever it is, it’s the only of its kind so far. so.. =D.

FOOD TOUR! by O’ngofood.

October 8th, 2014

maybe it is a little weird that I am actually participating in a tour while actually being here for my 3rd year now.

it isn’t any tour though. it is a FOOD TOUR. wait.. what? does a tour like this even exist?


many people participate in this tour because their friends told them what a blast they had. and I was there to find out!

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so for all the foodies like myself who love going for the local food and also cooking classes to learn how to make authentic Korean dishes! not just Kimchi, but something that’s actually filling. as for myself, I attended the night dining tour =3. I would love to try everything! given if I have time too. T_____T. see how much I am contributing to write all these posts for you people?

well you might think a food tour isn’t needed but it was a really good experience which I’ll never have without going for this tour and I think it’s a small price to pay for such great happiness and experiences.

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although I only participated for the night dining tour, my tour mates whom had participated on the morning cooking class told me how fun it was! and it makes me want to join them sometime too! above’s the kitchen! I’ve participated in a few cooking classes back when I was in Yonsei and I’d take a chance every single time to participate despite having to pay (after paying that expensive school fees!!! we still had to pay!).

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so my tour began at 6pm but I reached a little earlier so that my other tour-mates wouldn’t have to wait for me =3. it was nothing complicated coming to this place. just take exit 4 from Anguk station, walk straight for about 5 minutes and turn left when you see some overhead building on your right. and O’ngo academy is right opposite Prince Hotel!

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so we started our tour with BBQ. although I know where to go for good meat and all, I had never been to such an enjoyable place which had it all. the environment, the food.. everything complete.

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the wide array of side dishes/banchan was amazing. they even had my favourite pickled squid! you don’t get to eat that often in many places because it is one of the more expensive banchans. =S.

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they had two sets of banchan to feed 5 of us! how generous! that “ssamjang” or beanpaste sauce here was super special. they had nuts in it! so it’s pretty chunky and very yummy! definitely one of a kind. first time seeing it after living here for so long!

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and here’s our beef BBQ yum yum yum.

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our tour guide of the day, Jemma, explaining about the Korean culture, the food, how we eat them, why they are named that way and etc. I got to learn so much from her! and in this picture, she was making us some Korean shot drinks! after turning into an alcoholic here, I can’t believe I’ve never heard of this drink.

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so it is called sweet after bitter. half a shot of coke, a shot of soju and filled with maekju/beer. you have to down it like how a Korean would! ONE SYAT ONE SYAT! (one shot, I mean. hehehe)

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CHEEERS! what a way to start a dinner. but I must emphasize how it helped us in bonding. we turned into instant best friends by the end of the dinner.

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cheers selfie =D. they don’t accept super big groups but I was happy with the number of my group. just enough to get to know each other well!

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how I like my SSAM (wrap) to be. and the chili that’s not in frame. that pickled squid was the bomb. literally. LOVEEEEEEEE!

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we then headed on to our next location. at first when she told me we’re going to have Ddeokbokki, I was like… meh.. I had that way too many times since it is a common street food. but to my surprise, Jemma brought us to a quiet alleyway and we found ourselves in a place where there was no foreigners spotted despite being in the foreigner filled Insadong area. well why that place was special.. read on!

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we then started out second feast with a shot of “meihwasu”. I’d like to call it the girly soju but it’s actually plum wine!

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and here’s my table’s Ddeokbokki!!!

so errrr….. wait. isn’t ddeokbokki supposed to be red?

yeap. but according to Jemma, in olden times the royalties would like to have snacks too but the colour red was not allowed for their food. so they had to change their ways of making this amazing street food into a royal banquet. which is why this dish is called the Gungjung Ddeokbokki 궁중떡볶이 which translate to royal ddeokbokki.

don’t worry, you’re not lacking in Korean food education, even I myself have never heard of this before. even my Korean American friends when I told them about it!

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the dish was actually pretty simple. they had ddeokbokki with fish cakes, mandu and beef. but there’s something in the base where it made it sweet and addictive. I am actually craving for some of these right at this very moment. it was so yummy.

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Jemma and Jaime’s table had the seafood ddeokbokki! those aren’t pasta by the way, they are chewy Korean noodles! made out of.. sweet potatoes? this one’s more basic but special because of the seafood.

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so the sweetness (normally ddeokbokki ain’t sweet!) from the ddeokbokki sauce here is made out of fruits and it’s all au naturale~ ^^.

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we then headed to this street called “west pimatgol” which reads as seopimatgol in Korean. apparently it was one of the oldest foodie street back in the days and people riding horses have to park their horses somewhere else and come here just for food. there’s a history behind it. attend the tour and get to know more about it!

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she then walked us to an even more narrow alley and we found ourselves in one of the rarest things I’ve seen in Seoul. a Pojang-Macha.

remember when you watch Korean dramas, they’d dine outside at some tent restaurants? well they still have it as a small scale and you can see it if you go to none touristy areas. but in the all developed areas, it’s like a penguin in the dessert.

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firstly, drinking and eating in a pojang-macha/tent restaurants is a part of the Korean culture but the country is trying to get rid of it for a silly reason that it downgrades the country. but we foreigners love it. because many of us would rather go to these cute tent restaurants than to dine at a fancy Italian restaurant when we visit Seoul.

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hello Bradley! I really did made some cool new friends from this!

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look how cool the tissue roll is hanging from above. very convenient haahah.

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the menu’s all hand written and it can’t be any cooler.

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so the guy on the picture actually had his hand held up like what I’m doing except there was nobody beside him hehe. meet Jaime. I rarely met anyone from America with the same name as me who’s a girl! so we were really glad to have found each other hahaha. although with a different spelling, it’s still a huge coincidence!

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as for our third meal, we had Dalg-bokkeum-tang. Jemma explained everything so well it’s all in my head hahaha. I was wondering what’s the difference between Dalg-dori-tang and Dalg-bokkeum-tang. and she clarified it all for me. they are the same. the name changed for many places because dori is Japanese and some Koreans just.. don’t want a Korean dish to be associated with a Japanese name.

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Jaime said she didn’t like taking pictures. but I think she look beautiful in every one of them! no?

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with our Magnae (youngest of the group!) tourguide!

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so here’s Bradley, Christina, myself, Jemma and Jaime doing the “rawr” gesture. because we think it is sexy! hahahaha. Bradley and Christina’s actually touring around many countries for their honeymoon! super envious. and their friends whom had their honeymoon and had participated in this tour recommended this amazing tour to them =3. Jaime was recommended by her friend who enjoyed it as well. although none of my friends participated in this, I was lucky enough to stumble across it and be part of the group =3.


another selfie! we were all really chatty and we got so carried away that we missed the opening hours of that gorgeous Patbingsu place Jemma wanted to take us to. but she already have an alternative plan plotted out!

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and that is… *drum rolls*…. green pea pancake! or Bindaeddeok! that pancake you eat on a rainy day because the frying sound of it sounds like the rain. Korean logic. but it goes amazingly well with Makgeolli. one of my personal favourite Korean eating habits. I love it more than chicken and beer. I just love my green pea pancake and makgeolli the best=3.

I’ve actually wrote about this place before one my Gwangjang Market post. and my 19 years older Korean senior from my uni told me how this place is the best of the best in the Market. even Tim Burton came here!

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my tour ends here and it was quite a bittersweet moment as we had to part after having so much fun and getting to know each other. but all the best to your honeymoon and work my new friends!

AND ALSO, if you’re Muslim and is sad because you think you can’t participate in such a tour. fret not because.. this tour is all personalized and they actually have another set of restaurants set for our Muslim friends! being Malaysian, I care a lot for people of other races and cultures so.. I asked and I’m glad I did.

well, they have many tours as well so check them out at www.ongofood.com


fill in the form below!

if you register on their website, I’d be grateful if you would mention my website as your referral if you ever do sign up!

I am also very attracted to their Running Man tour which is held from Jeju to Seoul! it looks super interesting and it is one of their upcoming tours!

FINALLY, I’d also like to thank Daniel Gray, the Korean food critique, radio radio personality and power blogger of www.seouleats.com, for this amazing opportunity to try this tour out!

Cooking Mate, Hongdae

October 3rd, 2014

for those who watch Korean dramas, this Italian restaurant have appeared in an episode of “lets eat” which I really liked because I loveeeeeeeeee eating. as you might’ve already known. teehee.

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located in the middle of Hongdae, near Club Cocoon, this place is super easy to find. very convenient.

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the interior was really pretty though. kitchen concept.

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a very good place for dates though. over looking Hongdae and pretty white concept!

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there was quite a range of Pasta’s and Pizza’s and they were illustrated with a drawing showing what’s in there which I thought was really creative. apparently, this store uses good ingredients hence it’s kind of like a healthy good quality restaurant.

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the pasta’s were around 14,000won. definitely not cheap.

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but the coolest thing about this place is.. you can charge your phone by just putting it on the table! how cool is that!!!

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there’s this envelope with mouthwash and other stuff. but really, a mouthwash?! they got you all prepared to stay fresh even after you dine there!

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hungry Jamie.

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curry pasta. I took a bite of my friend’s pasta and it was goooooooooood. I didn’t know curry and pasta go together.

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prune gorgonzolla pizza. okay. this. is. weird. I like the prunes. by itself. and I like the gorgonzolla.. by itself too. the combination made the prunes out power the cheeziness of the pizza and really all I could taste was the prunes which was good but.. not exactly a good match. so what happened was I ate them separately after hahaha. I guess this appeals to Korean taste buds.

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my passion fruit drink. decent.

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and the famous Hedgehog Pasta!!! this was pretty good really. the bread soaked in the pasta got.. soggy but other than that it was all good! although it was 14,000won. for the presentation, the location and the ambiance, it was quite reasonably priced. if you wanna bring a girl out on a casual date? you know where to go to now.

oh, there was actually a few tables of people who looked like they came for a sogaeting (blind date set up by friends) and that was pretty funny hehehehehehehe.

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I LOVE this spoon. it’s sold at artbox! but restaurants and cafes just love using them. so cute right?!

New Years Day @ Fushimi Inari

September 26th, 2014

if you’re in Japan on December 31st, you MUST visit a temple/shrine. it isn’t exactly what all Japanese people do but I can guarantee you a huge crowd. in fact, I headed over to Fushimi Inari, my favourite geisha shrine. okay, it isn’t a geisha shrine but I call it that because it came out in “memoirs of a geisha” and I loved that scene a lot.

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we arrived around 4-5am on the first of January and half the stores were closed but you can imagine how crowded it was the night before. I wanted to go for the new years eve festival too but I chose to watch the first sunrise. it is similar in Korea too, where Koreans travel to the most Easten side of Korea to watch the first sunrise of the year.

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some random store. the food at festivals are really good. no idea if it is because I was in a festival mood or maybe because there was a lack of food and everything just tasted so good. but they are also much more expensive =(.

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see how most of the stores are already closed? there are less people too.

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alright, so I was really tired and I couldn’t hike up anymore. and this was literally my sunrise. with no sun. it was just like the whole sky lighting up. =S. there was a crowd of people behind me ahaha I was lucky to capture a shot of the peaceful Kyoto without anyone blocking me in front.

but it was rather misty that morning so.. =S.

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since I am Chinese, I really shouldn’t wear black on the first day of the year. but oh well, at least I had some red elements! I continued hiking and made hiking up Fushimi Inari my first new years resolution. hahahahha. stopped by at this stop to have eggs dipped in salt.

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I just love how the stores there are. very peaceful and Japanesey. and pricey =(.

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you know you’re halfway through when you see a lake. not in this post but you can see another Fushimi Inari post I had posted.

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I actually recommend you to take the way most people take to come down and not some random other way because it is not as pretty. as you go up, the tori’s will get further and further apart and it will also get steeper and difficult to hike if you have no stamina like me.

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well I made it to the top but.. I didn’t take any pictures there because the peak was.. sort of like a cemetery. not very appropriate. but I made it to the the peak of Fushimi Inari so my first new years resolution was checked on the first day!

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and on my way down.. it was around 9am and it was getting bloody crowded again. but I love being with people. make me feel less alone. =D. I was there with a friend so I liked it. but if you’ll be going there alone, you might want to invite a friend or two from your guesthouse/dorm or just look for some local friends to mingle around with!

Sinchon’s Famous ONE WHOLE CHICKEN! 공릉 닭한마리

September 23rd, 2014

공릉닭한마리 or Gong-reung-dalg-han-mari is said to be one of the yummiest of its kind! located in Sinchon, this famous place is actually pretty secluded and difficult to find. actually, most dalghanmari’s are hahahahaha. no idea why.

Japanese people especially frequents this place a lot and it was my Japanese friend whom had introduced me to all the famous Dalghanmari restaurants.

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but don’t worry because I’ve got you covered. I’ll provide you directions on how to get to gong-reung-dalghanmari. it is actually located in the middle of Sinchon and Edae but let me tell you how to get there from Sinchon instead since it’s nearer!

SO, get out from Exit 3 of Sinchon Station (line 2/green line). then, walk straight and turn right on the first right turn you find. it’s quite a small road but just walk all the way straight and you should be able to see buildings like the picture above.. it isn’t that difficult to find actually but because it is rather secluded so…

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here’s how the entrance look like!

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the Dalghanmari here is 1,000won cheaper than the one in Dongdaemun and is in my opinion, more delicious. it is kind of different. not sure how to express it but the one in Dongdaemun is much more famous. I guess people who prefer a sourish kind of sauce will prefer this one.

they state that it’s 19,000won for 2-3 people right? don’t trust them. unless you order noodles or is a small eater, you need 1 and a half for 3 people. because it is just THAT yummy. and yes, it’s possible to order half a portion for this store.

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the interior. nothing special. just like an ordinary Korean restaurant. and you sit on the floor!

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here it is! look very bland does it? but it’s not this pot that matters to me..

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is the sauce. look pretty.. disgusting? well I am salivating as I write this post. the sauce here is THE BOMB. only flaw is that they do not have all the ingredients on the table so that you can make as much sauce as you want like the dalghanmari store in Dongdaemun but the one here is YUMMAYYYY. they have different sauces and I guess that’s how they differ to me.


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their Kimchi’s really good too. similar to the one in Dongdaemun.

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it wasn’t my first time there and just look at the look of happiness on my face =3.

that’s how good it was. I cannot guarantee that it’ll taste as good as when I went there but it was good every time I was there.