Showing posts with label Korean Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Korean Food. Show all posts

Monday, December 12, 2016

Winter in Korea: From Incheon to Pyeongchang + Lepovill Pension + 그곳에가면

Hello December baby, my favourite time of the year! Oh, did I mention that my heart is still in Korea even though we have been back for almost a month? Ha, serious withdrawal symptoms. My life feels so empty recently; is this what they call mid-life crisis? To make things worse, Facebook reminded me of my winter memories from 2-3 years ago. Can I just hide in a hole and hibernate? That seems like an excellent idea now. By December, most of the ski resorts would be opened and there are several ski resorts which you can explore - Jisan, Yongpyong, Alpensia (just to name a few). Being an avid K-drama fan, Yongpyong was my top choice since this is the filming location of Winter Sonata, tsk tsk. We decided to save costs by staying at the pension instead of the resort itself, for a room within the resort could easily set you back by at least KRW200,000/night, which I will touch on later. 
Our tired faces after a long flight. After immigration, we hurried to the nearest convenience store and bought some snacks/drinks for the next leg of the trip. I'm not a coffee drinker, but somehow I always ended up drinking coffee in Korea. I think I'm more attracted to the packaging than the drink itself, ha. From Incheon airport, we headed directly to Pyeongchang where the ski resorts are located. 

How to get to Pyeongchang from Incheon Airport?
The ticketing office is located outside of the airport, opposite the arrival terminal. Hence, you will need to head outside, cross the road and look out for the office at 9C. 
The pension that we will be staying at was nearer to Alpensia ski resort (알펜시아리조트 스키장), hence we booked tickets from Incheon to Alpensia. A single trip ticket is KRW$29,000. The whole journey takes around 3 hours, with several stops along the way including one at the rest point for toilet break. We arrived at Alpensia and called Mr Kim, the owner of the pension for pick up. While waiting for Mr Kim's arrival, we booked our return journey (back to Seoul) from the concierge at KRW$17,000/pax. The bus will bring us directly to downtown Seoul, where we can then transfer to metro for the next part of the journey. 
We stayed at Lepovil pension for KRW$100,000/night, way cheaper than staying at the resort. Well, the downside is that we will have to call a cab whenever we head out or Mr Kim will give us a lift if he happened to head out at the same time. Cab rides mostly cost us around KRW$15,000 max (from city back to the pension) so it was still more affordable to stay in a pension. Plus, we had a great interaction with Mr Kim and his family/friends, hence it was a great experience for us too. 
The river flowing through the pension, which froze overnight due to the cold. We took a stroll around the compound on our last day, which I will share later in another entry. 
We were shown to our home for the next couple of days. I fell in love with the house and the surrounding, which reminded me of our Europe vacation. Mr Kim gave us a mini room tour, then left us to unpack/settle down. 
Our room came equipped with a small kitchen but we didn't cook anything apart from boiling water for cup noodles. We loved eating cup noodles whenever we travel, for it was so convenient to curb hunger pangs. Especially in cold weather, slurping up hot noodles just warms the body. 
레포빌 보드하우스 Lepovill Board House
Address: 대관령면 횡계리 14-343, 232-950 Pyeongchang, South Korea
Tel: +82 10-5755-8698
Our tummies started protesting once we settled in comfortably. We have not had a proper meal since we landed, for we were rushing from place to place. We asked Mr Kim for recommendation and he kindly drove us to this restaurant serving BBQ. 
Choice of floor or table seating; of course we had to go for floor seating - just for the fun of it. 
The standard drink for every meal. These are so cheap in Korea that it was hard to justify buying these in Singapore for personal consumption.
Check out the tray of meat; I'm so hungry looking at this.
I absolutely love the range of banchans that were served. Meanwhile, the fire is ready for cooking; can't wait to start! 
The most agonising part was waiting for the meat to be ready. Ahjumma helped us with the cooking while our duty was just to eat. 
All ready to eat, yum! I normally wrap it with half a lettuce, meat with a bit of gochujang and alternate between either kimchi or garlic (heck the smelly breathe). The meat was so tender that we devour ate pieces after pieces without stopping. 
그곳에가면
Address: 대관령면 대관령로 192
Tel: +82 033-336-9290 
Ahjumma helped us to call for a cab. With our tummies satisfied, we headed back to the pension for another round of gathering at the cafe with Mr Kim & friends; I will leave that for another time. Stay tuned for more of our adventures in Pyeongchang (^^)

  ☃☃☃ Read the rest of our Winter adventure here  ☃☃☃

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Leecher's Birthday 2014: Superstar K2 Korean BBQ and Ippudo

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It has been a long while since the last birthday post. Last month, we celebrated Leecher's birthday and it dawned on me that I have yet to document his 2014 birthday celebrations, oops! I drafted this way back in May last year, but never got around loading the pictures from camera/phone for this entry -- testimonial of my procrastinating nature.
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Before his actual birthday, we had a pre-birthday celebration with Kaiwei over Korean BBQ. Being the birthday boy, Leecher had the honour of picking the restaurant. Without any hesitation, he walked into a Korean BBQ, Super Star K2 Korean BBQ restaurant located along Amoy Street. The place was bustling with diners, despite the fact that it was almost 9PM. Almost every table was occupied and it took almost 15 min before we could grab a table. 
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Having dinner with the boys. Yanni was busy with work in office, thus she couldn't join us in this korean feast. 
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Before his butt even touched the chair, alcoholic Leecher immediately ordered 2 bottles of soju and 1 bottle of makgeolli to kick start the evening. I used to have a preference of soju over makgeolli. On this day, I decided that I should stick to makgeolli. 
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Appetizers to start the meal: Korean seafood pancake and steamed egg soon arrived. The egg was so fluffy that it looked like a gigantic yellowish cotton candy. I couldn't polish this on my own since I was saving my stomach space for other food. 
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Once charcoal is being placed, you know that it's time to start to ball rolling. The highlight of the meal arrived shortly. They have a variety of beef, pork and chicken. Price starts from $18 onwards. We had a go at 4 of their meat before deciding to order more. I much preferred spicy chicken over the other cuts/types of meat. Pork belly was awesome too.  
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We were given a metal "tray" each with 5 compartments. Leecher & Kaiwei commented that this reminded them of their army days, where they have to take the trays and queue up in  the canteen during meal times, lol! You get your own set of condiments - bean paste, garlic, salt/pepper and onions. 
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Let the feast begin (^^)
Superstar K2 Korean BBQ Restaurant
155/157 Telok Ayer Street 
Singapore 068611
Tel: 62212639
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On Leecher's actual birthday, he had cravings for Japanese food. Even though I hate going to town during weekend, we headed to Ippudo @ Mandarin Gallery for dinner. We spotted the long queue while heading up the escalator, but Leecher insisted on joining the queue. What to do, birthday boy is the "biggest" on his day. 40 min later, we finally got a table, putting an end to my misery for I was in high heels :)
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Birthday boy did the ordering: drinks, appetizers and mains.
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The huge array of sake available on display. I was pretty certain that Leecher would definitely order a bottle to go with his meal.
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Well, he proved me wrong by ordering Choya cocktails. We had Mandarino and Aranciata Rossa (Red Orange) mixed with Choya to kick start the evening. I was pretty surprised by his mild choice of drinks!
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Love the vibrant colour. I was never a fan of choya. However, I was tempted to get a bottle of choya and recreate this drink at home. If Choya is not your cup of tea, you can always head for Umeshu cocktails that comes with tonic, cranberry, sprite or soda.
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Leecher trying to get an instragram-worthy shot of the drinks, lol!
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Appetizers consisted of beef tataki and spicy shrimps. The prawns were lightly battered and deep fried to a lovely golden brown, served with home-made spicy mayonnaise dip. The dip wasn't spicy at all, it was in fact more tangy which helped to whet the appetite. 
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Akamaru chashu, topped with a tamago. This refined, modern-style ramen orginated from Hakata, where the broth is enhanced with special blended miso paste and fragnant garlic oil, served with thin noodles, pork belly, black fungus and spring onions.
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I had Spicy Black, which was a mixture of tonkotsu and miso based broth mixed with chili oil and black pepper for that extra oomph. There was a range of ramen toppings to select from, but I always think that a bowl of ramen only looks complete when there is a tamago in it. I have a personal habit of saving the tamago for the last bite too.
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Saving the last of our stomach space for Leecher's mini birthday cake. Happy birthday, my dear! 
Ippudo @ Mandarin Gallery
333A Orchard Road #04-02/03/04
Singapore 238867
Tel: 6235 2797

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Jang Won Korean Restaurant & Just Want Coffee, The Garden

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Whenever the convoy heads to JB, we'll end up going to Jang Won Korean Restaurant for a hearty meal (previous visit here). We have yet to come across another place that can rival the wide selection of banchan (반찬) at Jang Won. As usual, Joseph is our defacto order-guy, so we just need to concentrate on filling up our mouths with food while he shouts out the order list in the background. 
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The Sisters untie! You can probably tell that this is a backdated entry given that I was still spotting my bangs, lol! Seriously trying to catch up on lost time heh.  While the others went for a "break", we spent time taking pictures, lol! Joycelyn is now a mummy to a sweet baby Valerie while Eunice has upgraded to Mrs Lik :) Will blog about their overseas wedding in another post when I sort out the pictures. 
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 The mandatory group picture. As I coined it, this is attendance taking - proof of who joined for the gatherings.
Jang Won Restaurant
K3-211, 2nd Floor, Block C
Kompleks Perniagaan, Taman Stulang Laut
Jalan Ibrahim
Johor Bahru 80300
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Joseph, being the 地头蛇, brought us to a cafe to chill. Before we departed Jang Won, Joe gave his smug look that the Sisters will love this cafe. We didn't believe him initially, but when Eunice also gave her nod of approval, we became excited. Sorry bro, we have more faith in your wife's taste.
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Located in a residential estate, the cafe is housed in an actual housing unit with its own garden! As soon as we got off the car, all the phones/cameras came out and the girls kept snapping away. Eunice showed me a picture of the exterior during day-time and mentioned that this cafe reminded her of our love nest, lol! 
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Googled for the day picture (credits to owner of pic). OK, I want to go back again during day time and re-take all the pictures. Little did I know that this was just one of the JWC theme cafe outlets in JB. When I have the time to sort out pictures from the SD card, I shall blog about the JWC visit in another entry. 
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Welcome to my The Garden. Both indoor and outdoor seats are available; given that it was a rather cooling night, we decided on outdoor seats to soak in the atmosphere. What a pity Leecher didn't join us for this outing~ I snapped lots of pictures & tapped on their free wifi to send those across to Leecher. 
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 No one helped us to arrange the tables, so we had to self-service. Since too many cooks (will) spoil the broth, we decided to make ourselves useful by snapping pictures/looking at the menu first. Eye-power at its best! 
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Love the simple floral arrangement :)  
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They serve mainly desserts, pastries and beverages like coffee/tea. The sisters headed indoors to look at the cakes on display. However, there wasn't much choices left, so we can only make do with what they had to offer. Meanwhile, we spotted the hardworking barista at work. 
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 The guys mass-ordered cappuccino (RM$11) for their caffeine fix.
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 You can either order the original latte (RM$9.50) or pick a flavour from the list provided at RM$11.50 per cup. The flavour includes rose, roasted almond, masala chai and passion fruit. We didn't want to be adventurous, so we stick to the original latte.
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For the non-coffee drinkers, I had to opt for pot tea (RM$18) which contains french rose and hibiscus. There is also a weekly selection of gourmet leaf tea at RM$11.50 each.
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Blueberry scone (RM$10.50). This comes in cranberry as well, but it was sold out so we couldn't get to try. 
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Cheesecake (RM$9) which was average at best. 
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Lastly, presenting 2 of their recommended items - Tiramisu (RM$13) and homemade waffles (RM$12). Waffles was average, nothing particular caught my tastebuds. I had my own share of hit-and-misses with tiramisu. I really dislike those with extremely soggy base. The Garden's version was almost my ideal type - not-so-soggy base, the ideal proportion of coffee, mascarpone and sponge fingers. The serving is just nice for one pax, but food always taste better when shared.
Just Want Coffee, The Garden 
Jalan Persiaran Jaya Putra, 
Taman JP Perdana,  
Johor Bahru 81100
Tel: 07-2966530
Opening Hours: Closed on Mondays
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