29 (Thu) April 2010
(see index WHAT)
at Saebyeok Jip
(see index WHERE)
-Cheongdam, Gangnam, Seoul, Korea-
Hanwoo (한우) means “Korean beef.” The featured photo shows 2 portions totalling 250 grams (125 grams each) and costing 110,000 won (50,000 won each, plus 10% tax). To put those numbers into perspective, it’d be like paying $100 for an 8.8 ounce steak. These prices aren’t considered particularly expensive for hanwoo.
Saebyeok Jip (새벽집) is a hanwoo barbecue restaurant. Open 24 hours, with a name literally and appropriately meaning “House (jip) of Dawn (saebyeok).” Immensely popular, a landmark. In addition to the beef, the restaurant offers free and keep-em-coming pots of seonji-guk (선지국) (beef blood soup), which both tastes good and fills the belly during the meal with something other than exorbitantly over-priced meat. The owners took over the adjacent building, and eventually the next building, busting through walls to connect one to the other, such that diners enter through the original restaurant, still quaintly low key, and may be ushered into the second or third dining hall, where the decor becomes progressively modern.
Although I don’t patronize these types of places much anymore, tonight was a special occasion; our nanny’s going-away party, so we wanted to take her somewhere special.