A very important part of experiencing a foreign culture is of course sampling the food. Yes, I’m making excuses for basically just eating a lot while I was in Seoul. Ha!
One of the most famous foods is probably the Korean BBQ. It’s so good! You can order different cuts of meat and grill it at your table. With the meat come a lot of different side dishes. Kimchi is a staple but we also got other vegetables, rice and lettuce leaves to wrap the meat in once cooked.
Some of the meat is pre-cut but some isn’t. The larger pieces are put on the barbecue and then need to be cut up with the scissors provided, as Jayna demonstrates below.
The first time we went for barbecue we had a lot of the staff fussing over us – constantly changing the grill (I assume it was getting too black?), talking to us (unfortunately we had no idea what they were saying), trying to teach us words and sentences (still no idea) and handing us cooked, hairy leaves to wrap our food in. These leaves were part of the staff’s dinner so we felt bad that they were sharing them with us – and we ate them even though they were weird and cold and hairy…
If the barbecue restaurant is indoors (which they mainly seem to be), each table has an air vent to deal with the smoke.
Other dishes we had included dumplings,
…shaved ice with different toppings… yes, your eyes are not playing tricks on you, there are tomatoes on there. I’ve noticed that tomatoes in Asia seem to be more part of the fruit/dessert category than the vegetable/salad category.
Shaved ice with mango topping
A fruit stall bathed in sunlight
And let’s not forget the drinks!
Makgeolli – Korean rice wine. It’s alcoholic and it’s slightly fermented, so it’s a tiny bit fizzy sometimes. There are lots of different flavours and we ordered various different ones from a sample menu.
These are the makgeolli bottles.