This has been a mean and petty summer. Nearly every day since July has been blistering and it’s too hot to enjoy getting out of the apartment and brushing off the cabin fever. My school had it’s annual quick summer vacation and I took the time to go on a foodie adventure to Chuncheon, where one of my favorite Korean dishes, dak galbi, is said to have originated and pretend I was one of the castmates of my favorite Korean show, Tasty Guys. My plan was simple: eat too much and ignore the sweat beaming through my shirt.
Tasty Guys is a reality eating show where 4 loveable comedians eat more food than you ever thought was humanly possible. It’s just…wow. They can really pack it in. So I visited a city based on food and I pretended to be a host of a Korean TV show. I think that’s totally acceptable, right?
Luckily, there are several wonderful things to do in Chuncheon, which I will post about later, so we didn’t just eat all day. But, the food was the driving force and it was really special.
The Change in Itinerary
We had originally planned to go to a different, newer dak galbi restaurant. However, by chance, we picked maybe the best cab driver in all of Chuncheon. He recommended a totally different style of dak galbi, something I’ve never had. So we headed over the very picturesque Chamnamu Sutbul (Oaktree Charcoal Fire Dakgalbi and Makkuksu).
The restaurant is very eco-looking. It is all open (read: no air conditioning) and sits on a gravel floor. Hot fires are burning everywhere. If the food wasn’t so delicious I would have worried about sweating to death.
You get some sparse banchan (because it’s all about the chicken here) and you can use all of them to make ssam (food wrapped in lettuce). I particularly loved the tteok (rice cakes) that you could fry up to make them crispy on the outside but soft in the middle. The Tasty Guys could probably eat 100s of them.
Here it is. Doesn’t look like the chicken rib you are used to getting in Seoul, right? This is more like barbeque dak galbi and it’s cooked over these roaring hot black stones. The stones and sauce give it an amazing smokey and sweet flavor, it is finger licking good.
Some ssam ideas 🙂 . You’re welcome.
And like chicken and biscuits in America, this chicken has a perfect pairing as well, makguksu, a Korean buckwheat noodle dish. I have a video of me mashing this all up with my bare hands and serving it, however, my camera turns out to be extra horrible at recording. So I won’t subject you to it. There goes my hopes and dreams of being the first non-Korean speaking host of Tasty Guys. (Cries.)
They also have a self serve ice cream corner. So much perfection in one little stop. I wanted to hug that cab driver.
You really ought to try it.
Chamnamu Sutbul Chuncheon Dakgalbi & Makkuksu
Address: 64-4 Cheonjeon-ri, Sinbuk-eup, Chuncheon city, Gangwon-do
Hours: 10:30am – 8:00pm
By Cab: You can download these and show them to your cab driver.