Hanmiri Royal Cuisine, Seoul, Korea
The team in our local office took us here for dinner tonight (968-4 Daechi-dong, 556-8688), figuring that Korean royal cuisine isn't something that we had exposure to. I asked if it were like Japanese kaiseki, which my colleagues flatly denied, but to me, the concept is pretty much the same: present pretty little bits of food, mostly cold, over multiple courses, which in our case tonight had to have been over 20, leaving us completely stuffed.
It was interesting. One thing called gujeolpan was basically a tray with an assortment of ingredients and little wrappers the size of raquetballs so that you could make your own little mini burrito of sorts. Other dishes included a little beef here, a little pancake there, and perhaps the most interesting for me: some kind of wild sesame seed soup whose savory taste reminded me a bit more of roasted hoji cha tea than sesame.
All of this was closed off with a course of carbs as well as some dessert. And to think that I was pretty much already full by the time we finished the first few varieties of salad. Anyway, just as with kaiseki, I can respect the history behind this stuff and am glad that we came here to try it, but it's nothing that I'm going to get cravings for.