Nakji Ilbeonji ~ Mia-dong, Gangbuk-gu

This was one of my favorite meals because it involved spicy seafood and cheese.

CHEESE.

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This travelling trio was very fortunate to have a friend in Korea (Malaysian by birth, Korean by blood) to bring them to this restaurant which none of us would have been able to find on our own. Searching online has rendered me with no results of this place but thanks to Google Translate’s image recognition function, I’ve managed to make up the name and bits and pieces of information on the name card.

The full address is Mia-dong Gangbuk-gu 54-211. If you’re taking the train, the station to get off is Miasageori on Line 4, Exit 2. From there, follow the image below to get to the restaurant. Their opening hours are 11.00 am – 5.00 am. Thank you Google Translate!

If the map below is not adequate, copy 낙지 일번지 and paste it in Google Maps and it will lead you to the restaurant.

Spicy squid card - Line 4 – Miasageori

Click the image to zoom in!

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This restaurant specializes in nakji bokkeum (낙지볶음), a spicy stir-fried octopus. Chili and octopus in the same word? Sign me up anytime. There’s also the option for a mixture of meat and octopus and even abalone and octopus.

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The side dishes you get are blanched bean sprouts, salad leaves, seaweed, perilla leaves, pickled onions (which are refillable) and marinated fish eggs (not refillable). My favorite was the mildly sweet and salty fish eggs. It goes incredibly well together with the spicy octopus and the crunchy seaweed.

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When the dish arrives, there were oohs and ahhs at the presentation. In the middle is marinated octopus, cabbage and scallions. On the left is shredded cheese and on the right, some seasoned egg.

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They present the octopus to you in it’s intact form – from head to tentacles then proceed to cut them into bite sized pieces so that they cook evenly on the hot plate.

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Wait while the egg bubbles and steams on the iron hot plate.

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And salivate while the cheese melts into ooey gooey goodness! I was amazed that the hot plate was made of such good quality that nothing stuck to it. The cheese and egg left no residue on the plate.

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You’re supposed to flip the egg when it’s half-cooked so that the bottom cooks as well. This is the entire dish when it’s fully cooked.

The spicy octopus had a real kick to it. This is probably the spiciest dish I’ve had in Seoul. Sweet, salty and spicy, the marinade was well balanced and the octopus, super fresh. We were taught to pick up a piece of octopus, dip it into the cheese then plop it into your mouth or wrap them in the perilla leaves or seaweed. You could do a little ensemble of cheese dipped octopus, fish eggs and beansprouts on seaweed and it tastes absolutely spectacular together.

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Feeling a little indulgent, we ordered 2 portions of cheese fried rice. Along came a big bowl of rice, seaweed and cheese.

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Some of the octopus was scooped into a smaller bowl then the rice and seaweed dumped in.

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Deliciousness about to happen.

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The cheese was dumped into the rice after it has been well mixed before  flattened to maximize it’s surface on the hot plate. This fried rice was my favorite as well as Mukshidonna‘s. It was immensely tasty and with that zing of spiciness, differentiated itself from Mukshidonna’s. The assumption for fried rice here is that if the sauce is good, the fried rice will be too.

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The closest train station is Miasageori on Line 4. Directions to the restaurant is on the name card at the beginning of this post

Please bear in mind that most of the time, we ordered 2 portions for 3 people and that some places have a minimum 2 portion policy for 2 pax or more.

Here’s a summary of what we ate during our trip, click the image below for a larger view.

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Kindly compiled by my extremely efficient travel finance manager, the excel sheet for the above image is available here.

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