2.362 Hanbang Jaengeo


2 (Mon) January 2012

Hanbang Jaengeo


at Jangsucheon

-Geumgok, Bundang, Seongnam, Gyeonggi, Republic of Korea-

with Mom and Dad, PMS, TW

Jangsucheon (장수천) is a Korean restaurant.  Specializes in one dish: grilled freshwater eel (jangeo).

For whatever reason, the restaurant doesn’t serve alcohol.  But customers can buy booze from a small convenience store next door and take it into the restaurant, which could be a hassle but marginally cheaper in the end.  Curiously, given that the restaurant is located in the middle of nowhere without any expectation of foot traffic, the existence of the convenience store would appear to be for the primary purpose of selling booze to the restaurant’s customers.

The self-service sides were simple, fresh, perfectly suited for the grilled eels, especially the mugeunji (extra fermented kimchi).

The eels were the largest and juiciest eels that I’ve experienced.  Each one weighed around 250 grams and measured as long as the distance from my fingertips to elbow.

Over oak coals, they were grilled to perfection: crispy on the outside, soft and chewy inside.  Unseasoned except for a sprinkle of coarse sea salt applied on the grill, the pure flavor of the eel was explosive.

The restaurant’s proprietary hanbang sauce – supposedly patented – a bit of soy tinged with the distinctive flavor of Korean traditional medicine, provided a slightly bitter punch that paired perfectly with the oily richness of the meat.

At 25,000 won per eel, it’s the most expensive that I’ve encountered but worth every won.

(See also FOODS)

(See also PLACES)

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