Jungsik & Modern Korean In Seoul

Jungsik is one of the restaurants in Seoul leading the way for new Korean cuisine.  The other would go to Ryunique, which is a few blocks away.  

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Chef Jung Sik Yim’s application of modern technique changing Korean cuisine.  He’s one of the reasons why Seoul is becoming a popular foodie destination; also, he’s bringing a different perspective to people who view Korean cuisine as nothing more than Korean BBQ and Bibimap.  He was an apprentice at the Bouley restaurants and Aquavit in New York after finishing New York’s Culinary Institute of America.

Jungsik's decor
Jungsik’s decor

Jung Sik’s current resume boasts the following accolades:

  • 2014 #20 Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants
  • 2015 #10 Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants
  • 2016 #22 Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants
  • 2015 #93 World’s 50 Best Restaurants
  • 2015 2 Michelin Stars for his New York Jungsik restaurant
  • 2016 2 Michelin Stars for his New York Jungsik restaurant
  • 2017 1 Michelin Star for his Seoul Jungsik restaurant
  • 2017 2 Michelin Stars for his New York Jungsik restaurant

But who gives a flying fuck if the food isn’t tasty, right?   We get to the bottom of it like the Russian and Trump campaign ties.

First, let’s talk about the restaurant without “alternative facts” getting in the way.  The Seoul restaurant is in Gangnam-Gu, which on the map thanks to Psy’s massive hit.  However, I’m not talking about a bong rip but for his song — Gangnam Style.  The restuarant’s decor is minimalist with its color tones and it has modern feel to it with its dark tablecloths and use of plants.  Now, it’s a little awkward for someone who is as grimy as me to be at the fancy restaurant like Jungsik.  It’s cause I’m bad and boujee.

Jungsik's Table Settings
Jungsik’s Table Settings

The service was very impressive and definitely a step up from the world’s most famous restaurant — McDonald’s.  Macca’s if you’re in Australia.  The staff barely speaks English but it’s not necessary cause all they need to do is bring the food out.  The utensils and dishes were delivered with a choreograph dance like Kendrick’s new Humble video.  There were things lost in translation but it was easy to get through thanks to Google Translate.  Technology meets fine dining, kids.

Jungsik has three different tasting menus — Choice, From Jeju and Signature.  The Choice consists of picking your courses and the other two being tasting menus.  I’m like Kanye at times in that I don’t actually like thinking.  It speaks loudly.  Literally.  I decided with the Signature tasting menu.  Here are my favorite items:

  1. Amuse-bouche – The meal started with seven amuse bouche laid across the table. It was a modern interpretation of the traditional Korean banchans.  In other words, side dishes for days, son.  The small bites were locally sourced Korean ingredients like radish and cabbage.  The amuse-bouche were very easy and light on the palate.  The Korean flavors were very fresh and bright; it set the tone of the good things were on its way like when your Tinder date says, “Wanna hook up?”
    Jungsik's Amuse Bouche or ban chans
    Jungsik’s Amuse Bouche or ban chans
  2. Truffle Eggs – The slow cooked egg laid in scallions and peas topped with Korean rice crispy treats.  The egg yolk’s silky texture consumed the crispy treat when I put my spoon in it.  It was a good display of differences like the South and North Korean conflict.  The truffle’s strong aroma was really apparent and the addition of the black truffles were decadent like a Saudi prince buying plane tickets for his 100 hawks.
    Jungsik's Truffe Egg
    Jungsik’s Truffe Egg
  3. Rose of Versailles – The Rose of Versailles was amazingly presented.  The glass plate really brought out the presentation of the dessert.  The Rose of Versailles was a blueberry dessert made of sweet longan ice cream and rich cheesecake.  A single gave my sweet tooth a cavity and my teeth were literally falling out at the table.  Well, it could be that or I need new dentures.
    Jungsik's Rose of Versailles
    Jungsik’s Rose of Versailles

Lastly, I liked my dining experience at Jungsik.  It was brought a new light to Korean cuisine like how there’s always a new controversial with the Trump Administration.  I got to meet the man of the hour after my meal.  Jungsik not Trump.  Jungsik was a very nice person and we had a conversation about New York restaurants.  Must visit while in Seoul like the DMX.  Opps I mean DMZ.

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  • 8/10
    Service - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Presentation - 8/10
  • 8.5/10
    Flavors - 8.5/10
  • 8/10
    Decor - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Ambiance - 8/10
8.1/10

Summary

Jungsik is one of the best restaurants in Seoul. It has a long list of accomplishments like the laundry list of Trump Twitter tirades. Now, it’s a little awkward for someone who is as grimy as me to be at the fancy restaurant like Jungsik, but I’m bad and boujee. The restaurant is a must stop like when a druggy has an overdose.

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