Just got back from a trip to South Korea and I’ve got some recommendations to share with you from the bustling touristy neighborhood of Myeongdong. My family and I were pleased to have had all sorts of delicious dishes during our stay, and let me tell you – it was a foodie paradise.
One of the things that made Myeongdong such a great place to eat was the abundance of street food stalls and food stores. Whether you’re in the mood for a quick snack or a sit-down meal, you’ll find it all here. Plus, with so many options, you can mix and match to your heart’s content.
First up, let’s talk about hotdogs. These grilled sausages are a popular street food in South Korea and can be found at stalls and stand throughout the country.
The sausages I had were priced at 5000 Won and came with ketchup and mustard on the side, so you can add as much or as little as you’d like. They were chunky and meaty – and the fact that it was grilled to order made it even more appetizing – especially in the cold weather.
Just be prepared to wait about 20 minutes as business can be pretty good at this stall. Look out for the gentleman in the photo!
Location: Along Myeongdong 8-gil, near H&M
Myeongdong Kyoja Main Store
For something a little more unique, I highly recommend Myeongdong Kyoja.
This restaurant has won many Michelin awards and has a limited menu with only four items: spicy noodles, kalguksu (noodles), and mandu/kyoja (dumplings). The mandu was especially amazing – the skin was thin and delicate, like ‘Xiao Long Bao’ skin, and the filling was a delicious combination of glass noodles, meat, and vegetables. Each order of mandu comes with ten dumplings – this is incredibly filling.
The kalguksu was also pretty good! In fact, a friend recommended this shop for noodles more than the mandu.
Myeongdong Kyoja also has another store nearby – and it is also consistently packed like the main store. With the food quality here, it’s no surprise they’ve made a name for themselves since 1966.
Address: 29 Myeongdong 10-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Hours: 1130 – 1500; 1700 – 2200
Wangbijib BBQ is another place worth mentioning! I went to this restaurant twice during my stay in Seoul and enjoyed the feast I had there. The food quality was consistently high, though my first experience was slightly better than the second (service-wise). Either way, it’s worth visiting if you’re a BBQ fan. Do try out their pork and mushrooms. We skipped the beef both times.
Look out for the pumpkin and corn side dish – it won the hearts of my family – think mashed pumpkin with bits of corn.
Wangbijib BBQ has two stores in the Myeongdong area; the one we went to was the second store. Be prepared to queue – the wait isn’t too long, though!
Address: 13 Myeongdong 9-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Hours: 1130 – 1500; 1700 – 2200
Baekje Samgyetang (백제삼계탕)
If you’re looking for a good alternative to the famous Totsochon ginseng chicken shop, I recommend trying Baekje Samgyetang, which is strategically located in Myeongdong.
The dish consisted of a small chicken stuffed with glutinous rice, a date, chestnut, and ginseng. A shot of ginseng wine is also provided for customers to either drink or mix into your soup. I loved the flavour it brought to the soup – and the chestnut and glutinous rice gave the dish different textures.
Ginseng chicken is wildly popular in South Korea, and you can find it in many stores, but this shop stands out because of its creamy soup and tender chicken.
This shop had a couple of variations of ginseng chicken soup with white or black chicken, with and without the additional wild ginseng. I had the classic – white chicken with regular ginseng soup priced at 18000 Won.
PSA: the ratings on Naver Map’s higher than Google Maps – so don’t worry too much about the 3.9 stars the shop has on Google Maps 😉
Address: South Korea, Seoul, Jung-gu, Myeongdong 2(i)-ga, 50-11 KR
Hours: 0900 – 2200
Kkanbu Chicken Myeongdong
I just had to squeeze this shop into the list. While not particularly unique to the Myeongdong area, this chain chicken store serves amazing fried chicken.
The spicy fried chicken was delicious – crispy on the outside and coated with a spicy, tangy sauce on the outside. A portion of the wings was 20,000 Won and easily serves three people. It comes with a side of pickled radish and a can of coke.
As the chicken is freshly prepared, do expect to wait about 20 minutes for your order! I highly recommend getting this for a late-night snack with friends and family.
Address: South Korea, Seoul, Jung-gu, Myeongdong 8ga-gil, 22 IB타워 2층
Hours: 1600 – 0000
While some may avoid the Myeongdong area as it seems to just be a shopping area, I highly encourage you to drop by this place for some pretty good food. Whether you’re looking for street food or a sit-down meal, there’s something for everyone in this amazing country. Happy eating!