After our brief trip to New England we made our way to Seoul, South Korea to visit my grandparents.

Our first night was short but memorable. My dad took Courtney and I to a place that is known for it’s cold water radish. We had a hot pot of pork and lots of mushrooms along with freshly made kimchee. The water radishes which were refreshing, sour, and delicious.

Korean Toast

The next morning Courtney and I trotted over to InsaDong where there are lots of traditional arts and touristy trinkets everyone, but also small narrow streets lined with tea shops. We were hungry but not many places were open so we decided to get some toast for breakfast. It turned out to be very different than the toast that we know. I order the "everything" toast which has butter, some processed cheese, cabbage, something really sweet, pickles, and some ham. It was sweet enough to be breakfast but savory enough for me to eat. Courtney just had the cheese toast and she thought it was delicious and sweet as well.

Plum and 5 flavor tea

We went to a tea house that we had been to 2 years ago. Last time I had mushroom tea, but since it was the tail end of the summer most of the teas were cold and cooling. This time I ordered the 5 flavor tea which really had a great sweet, sour, salty, and bitter taste to it. I couldn’t quite grasp the fifth flavor, but maybe it was the Chinese flavor sense of pungency, but I couldn’t taste it. Courtney had her favorite plum tea. Both were delicious and came with a side of Korean sesame crackers and duk (korean style mochi).

For lunch we had some time to kill before heading off to the Sauna so I had some HaeJangKook (or Hangover soup as it is known) with beef and congealed blood. Courtney had the BiBimBap (mixed rice). Both were above average but we later found out that my parents frequent the place and they are known for a different dish than that ones we ordered.

Hae Jang Kook

Most restaurants in Korea specialize in one type of food only so if one person wants something then everyone pretty much eats the same thing. For our first real night in Korea we had garlic pork. Most Korean BBQ has lots of savory or spicy sauces. This one pretty much was just pork with bits of garlic grilled to perfection, then wrapped with kochujang in a lettuce leaf. We were in BBQ heaven. What was even better was the spicy fish stew that came after the BBQ. Exhausted from the trip, we slept waiting for what was in store for us the next day.

Garlic Park BBQ