Hailing from Japan, Manten-Boshi specializes in juicy hamburg steaks doused in a velvety demi-glace sauce. The key is in the sauce, which takes a week to make.
Yet, the best part about this restaurant is the fact that it makes excellent puddings. Quivering, soft and covered in golden, clear caramel sauce, each spoonful of custard imparts a sweet moment of bliss.
Manten-Boshi is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. daily. Hamburg steak dishes cost 15,000 won to 21,000 won. For more information call (02) 6353-8943. Teuscher-Seoul
Boasting nearly 80 years of history, this Swiss chocolatier creates mouthwatering morsels so tempting, so beautiful, they are hard to resist, none more so than Teuscher’s famed Champagne truffles crafted with Dom Perignon.
“People who know about Teuscher only order the Champagne truffles,” said Teuscher-Seoul CEO Shi Sung-jin.
Indeed, the upscale truffle is an ideal marriage of fragrant aromas and rich creamy textures. The kick at the end, more an elegant tap than a kick, is a pleasant reminder of its Champagne cream center.
Teuscher is open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and is closed Sundays. Chocolates cost 240 won per gram. Solid chocolates cost 200 won per gram. For more information call (02) 755-5004.Hanilkwan
The historic hansik restaurant, which first opened in 1939, saddened many a loyal patron when it moved from its original Jongno spot to Sinsa-dong in 2008. In November, Hanilkwan opened a third outlet in Ferrum Tower, a location strikingly close to its old spot.
“Lots of customers missed us so we chose to open here,” said advisor Kim Dong-wol.
The menu is a bit more simplified than the main store in Sinsa-dong and there is a new walk-through area where customers in a rush can get food to-go.
“We offer complementary traditional Korean tea while you wait for your order,” said Kim.
Hanilkwan is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Popular half-course meals cost 11,000 won to 14,000 won. Korean donburi to-go costs 8,000 won to 9,000 won. For more information call (02) 1577-9963.Yamaya
Yamaya specializes in motsunabe. Essentially a soup made from beef offal, motsunabe is considered a traditional dish of Fukuoka, Japan.
In a tatami-clad space that resembles an izakaya, customers can dip into steaming hot pots of authentic soup made from one out of three broths ― soy sauce, miso or ponzu sauce.
Yamaya is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. daily. Motsunabe per person costs 13,900 won. Lunch sets cost 13,000 won. For more information call (02) 6353-8946.Paul Bassett
World Barista Championship 2003 winner Paul Bassett opened his first namesake cafe in Ginza, Tokyo, in 2005, serving up perfectly roasted brews to a nation responsible for the development of hand-drip coffee.
Here, at Bassett’s second South Korean outlet, espresso aficionados can tip back strong, full-bodied macchiatos or sip at intense yet creamy cappuccinos.
Paul Bassett is open from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. weekdays, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturdays, till 6 p.m. Sundays. Coffee-based drinks cost 3,500 won to 5,000 won. For more information call (02) 6353-8991. Ferrum Tower
To get there, go to Euljiro 1-ga Subway Station Line 2, Exit 3. Ferrum Tower will be to your right. Teuscher and Paul Bassett are located on the first floor. Restaurants are on the first basement floor.
By Jean Oh (email@example.com