With the prospect of a through-the-night flight to Singapore via Taipei ahead of me, it was time to say goodbye to Seoul with one final lunch.
I’d been meaning to try so many more of the local delicacies but time just didn’t allow. I couldn’t depart without indulging in the famous samgyetang – ginseng chicken soup – though, so luckily found a place that served it not far from my hotel, on Euljiro.
l had timed my arrival so the lunchtime rush was over so I was one of just a few punters. The friendly staff suggested I was probably there for the samgyetang and I was happy to agree. I took a seat and waited while my dish was prepared to order. There was the expected set of pickle dishes first which were as good as ever.
The soup arrived with a considerable flourish, bubbling and steaming to the max and smelling just fantastic. The dish contains a whole chicken – well more like a poussin – stuffed with rice and whatnot.
Eating it was like a game of fishing; meat or bone with each chopstick foray into the depths. I soon turned my lack of success into a tactic. I figured if I removed the carcass, piece by piece, I’d eventually have a cooled bowl of soup filled with delicious meat, rice and ginseng root.
This worked to an extent. Whatever the case the chicken was delicious and the broth as flavour-packed as I’d had from the various variations on this theme – kalguksu, gomtang, etc – that I’d tried on this trip. It was really lovely and I wolfed the bowl down with considerable alacrity.
So overall, it was great to end on such a joyful food high note at Eulji Samgyetang. I really enjoyed what I ate and would recommend this dish to you highly. Farewell to Seoul, but I’ll be back as it’s a wonderful city full of wonderful people and wonderful food.
Blythe scores Eulji Samgyetang
4/5 for food
4/5 for presentation
3.5/5 for setting
4/5 for service
giving an overall 15.5/20
I ate: samgyetang
I drank: water
I wore: now traditional Hawaiian wear
Total bill: 14,000 won
Address: 101-15 Euljiro 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul