Restaurants in Seoul

Seoul has fabulous street food, BBQ, and even crawl-friendly pubs, but the most famous dish in the city, and even South Korea, is kimchi, a spicy, pickled mix of cabbage and other veggies. You won't have any problem finding it in countless restaurants in Seoul—such as authentic restaurants like Solmoemaeul, which highlights banchan, a colorful array of side dishes, alongside classic kimchi.

Budnamujip. Located south of the Han River and city's center, this is one of the best restaurants in Seoul, which does excellent galbi: short ribs seasoned with garlic, Asian-pear juice or rice wine, and grilled right in front of you.
Hanjanui Chueok. For Korea's answer to great pub grub, come to this low-brow star among Seoul restaurants—known for its juicy (and very spicy) fried chicken. Wash it down with plenty of Hite beer.
The Ninth Gate. Need a fix of Western cuisine? This restaurant in the Westin Chosun is acclaimed for its continental cuisine.
Jung Sikdang. This restaurant by Dosan Park does a nice, nouveau version of Korean cuisine. Save room for the chocolate dessert served on a bed of sugar straw.

At Budnamujip restaurant, in an area far south of the Han River and the city’s center, the specialty is galbi, short ribs traditionally seasoned with such flavors as Asian-pear juice, sesame seed, rice wine, sugar, and of course, that Korean mainstay, garlic.

At this airy place, the emphasis is on royal cuisine, which stretches back to a time before Korea’s fateful encounter with the chili pepper some 250 years ago, and may thus be gentler on some Western palates.

Enormous pitchers of Hite beer land on tables and are consumed instantly by the eclectic, raucous, smoky clientele. The bar food here would find few peers anywhere in the world.

A café frequented by the wealthy plastic-surgery set.