A quick call to her set everything in place.
Rochelle and I rode the subway from Yeouinaru to Anguk and Eun-jin met us there. Where she took us exceeded my expectations on every count. When she'd mentioned her mother ran a restaurant, I'd thought she ran a small neighborhood cafe of some kind because Eun-jin didn't talk too much about it. Little did I know that her mother runs one excellent traditional Korean restaurant in Insadong! It is called Bukjigu Jangguchigu. It has rustic wooden beams everywhere and the place feels like a cozy cabin. I loved it right away for its intimate atmosphere and inviting decor.
The food tasted every bit as good. We ate a chicken and vegetable dish called dalkgalbi bokkeum tang (닭갈비 볶음탕), a dish that looked like dalkgalbi, but wasn't quite the same because it had slightly different ingredients and it came covered in a spicy red sauce. Eun-jin recommended it to us by saying it's her favorite thing to eat there. We loved it too. As usual, the dish came with a big assortment of sides. And what's more, a big haemul pajeon (Korean pancake) arrived as "service," or a free bonus! Haemul pajeon means seafood pancake. Their large size makes them a meal in itself! We dove into that as a sort of dessert and left the place feeling full and happy from the good times.
Tis was a great outing because Eun-jin's a good friend and we don't get to meet too often because of our busy schedules. As it happened, Eun-jin's friend joined us and told us about her upcoming wedding, so we enjoyed hearing that too.
*Sometimes restaurants and businesses will give free stuff as "service" or "Seo-bi-seu" for various reasons: liking you, sales promotions, being a frequent customer, etc. It's one of the many things that makes this country great.
Links to the restaurant here: