2.350 Agneshko po Gergiovski


21 (Wed) December 2011

Agneshko po Gergiovski


at Zelen

-Hannam, Yongsan, Seoul, Republic of Korea-

w W and DJ, MtG + gf, CJH + KKH

Zelen is a Bulgarian restaurant.

Prior to this evening, I’d never considered the existence of Bulgarian food, much less the idea of eating it.  Remarkable how so few of the culinary traditions throughout the world, even a representative dish or two, manage to go global.  Anyway, thanks to MtG’s knack for finding good eats of any kind, a Bulgarian restaurant has suddenly become my new favorite dining destination in the city.

Bulgarian cuisine is representative of Southeastern Europe, essentially South Slavic, sharing characteristics of other Balkans cuisines and demonstrating strong Greek and Turkish influences.  Owing to the relatively warm climate and geography affording excellent growth conditions for a variety of vegetables, fruits, and herbs, the food is diverse.  Pork is the most common meat, along with chicken and fish and lamb.  Most dishes are baked, steamed, grilled, or stewed.

The food at Zelen was along the lines of what might be considered “typical” European fare. Most of the dishes were meat-and-potatoes, both literally and figuratively in the sense that everything was simple and hearty and tasty.

For example, the featured dish – Agneshko po Gergiovski = Lamb of St George – was roast leg of lamb and boiled potatoes in gravy.  At 26,000 won, it was the most expensive item that we had.  It was also the most mundane and least satisfying dish of the meal – the lamb was somewhat stringy and a bit too gamy for my tastes – but I’m using it for the post despite the mere 2.5 rating because it was the dish that I ordered for myself, and I’m sure that the other dishes will someday soon have their moment in the spotlight.

Beyond the good food and friendly service at reasonable prices, what I like about Zelen is that it offers the opportunity to try something new, though not too radically new.  And conveniently for me, it’s located in Hannam, a 2-minute drive from home (the original location is in Itaewon).

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