Tuesday, October 04, 2016

"Ultimate Beef Soup" from Hadongkwan in Seoul, Korea

Ultimate Beef Soup

This is actually my second meal here today. During lunch, I got the same bowl that I got last time, which was just the basic KRW 13,000 (US$11.70) bowl. But I was told that there were several more expensive grades available, like the "special," "special plus," and "ultimate" bowl, topping out at KRW 25,000 (US$22.50). With the extra money came different cuts of meat. It really is kinda like a Korean version of phở.

Anyway, I needed dinner after work tonight, and this place happened to be right there. So I figured what better time than now to try that ultimate bowl above. Now, that black stuff in the photo above might look rather off-putting, and to be honest the smell coming from it wasn't super appealing either. But it was delicious. I think it was some kind of stomach lining or something, and it was tender without any stank. It was particularly good with just a bit of salt and pepper.

I love this place! The food is delicious and it comes out of the kitchen in literally less than 60 seconds, and one could top up a mere KRW 1,000 (US$0.90) for another bowl of rice with free soup. BTW, I was told that the main difference between this gomtang and related bowls like seolleongtang is that the latter is brewed with bones but this is pure meat. And in the 1960's, soup was a cost-effective way of allowing more people to taste beef, even if they couldn't afford it. This shop only opens at 9:30 AM though, so there goes my breakfast idea.

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