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- Gwanghwamun Jip 광화문집
Published on: July 8, 2010
Last modified: November 12, 2018
I'm always on the hunt for the secret holes-in-the-wall that locals know about. Gwanghwamun Jip is one such place. Tucked in a closet-sized space in a back alley, this place serves a great pot of pork kimchi jjigae. It basically only sells three items: pork kimchi jjigae, gyeran mari (rolled omelet) and jeyuk bokkeum (spicy stir-fried pork). The kimchi in this jjigae is well aged. The pork has lots of flavor. The kimchi is fresh and rustic. The pots come to broilers on the table, where they're cooked. The gyeran mari is well seasoned and dotted with sliced leeks. The banchan is well-balanced, giving a little something to satisfy all tastes. At just W5,000 a pop, this is a definite find!
Suggested Items: Kimchi jjigae 김치 찌개, Gyeran mari 계란마리 (rolled omelet)
공기밥 Gongibap (Rice) W1,000
생두부 Saeng Dubu (Fresh Tofu) W2,000
계란마리 Gyeran Mari (Rolled Omelet) W5,000
제육볶음 Jeyuk Bokkeum (Spicy Stir-fried Pork) W10,000
돼지김치찌개 Dwaeji Kimchi Jjigae (Pork & Kimchi Stew) W5,000
More pictures on Flickr.
* Please help complete this review by adding information in the comments
I went here for the first time this past Sunday (Sept 26). I was promptly directed to a seat, however I was never given an opportunity to order food. Instead they just served me the Dwaeji Kimchi Jjigae (Pork & Kimchi Stew) (with banchan), and that was it. I was a bit confused, as I actually wanted to order the Gyeran Mari & Jeyuk Bokkeum. Unfortunately, as I speak no Korean, I was out of luck to question what was going on. My only guess is that they assumed that I didn't know any Korean, and just gave me what was popular.
That said, the food that I was served was very good. If/when I happen to visit Seoul again, I'll likely go back here, but I'd love to hear whether my experience was normal.
I'm sorry, but that's a pretty funny experience, Lonni.
The price went up to 6,000 won and the rice is not included, which I found unusual for a hole-in-the-wall place. We were seated right near the door, where we were unpleasantly interrupted by unwanted visitors (pen handlers and guests waiting in line frequently checking inside as there is no usher). I certainly didnt expect them to have good service but it was understaffed (quite common in Korea).
There were bits of egg shells in the 계란말이. Disgusting! I was totally put off by the whole experience, paid for it and then walked out, never wanting to return. But then, it is only my experice. Old grandpas and Korean workers seemed to enjoy their kick in the 찌개.
I went for the second time a few days ago. I'm quite happy that I returned. This time I was actually offered the Jjigae but was given the opportunity to order off the 'menu'. We got the Gyeran Mari, Jeyuk Bokkeum and Dwaeji Kimchi Jjigae. All of them were great (no egg shells in the egg, i wasn't seated in front of the door, and there were no pandhandlers). Also the women running the place were really sweet & charming. For a place with 5 tables, they do an amazing job.