When people visit Seoul one question they have in mind is "what should I eat?" Here are three different dishes you should definitely try if you are looking for something to eat in South Korea (and one dish to avoid). If you really want to try Kimchi, don't worry: all of these dishes will come with kimchi.
1. Ja Jang Myeon (ìì¥ë©´)
This dish is made up of wheat noodles, and a dark soybean-based sauce, consisting of diced onions, pork or beef, and a variety of other vegetables (depending on where you visit). You can eat Ja Jang Myeon at a restaurant in Seoul, or you could order it for delivery. One great thing about ordering for delivery is that you won't have to pay a tip, and the deliverer will actually come back to your house to pick up the dishes when you are done!
One interesting thing about Ja Jang Myeon is that it is served in "Chinese Restaraunts" in Korea. Why is this so? Ja Jang Myeon was originally a Chinese dish brought over to Korea many years back. But because so many years have passed since Ja Jang Myeon was brought to Korea, the noodles by now have a distinctively Korean taste.
2. Gam Ja Tang (ê°ìí)
Gam Ja Tang is a thick, spicy soup made up of pork (from the spine), onions, potato, and other vegetables. This is always served with rice. The literal meaning of this word is "potato soup." But this could be misleading, because although there is a large piece of potato in the soup, Gam Ja Tang gets most of its flavor from pork and spices.
One warning: Gam Ja Tang is quite spicy. But if you are up for a challenge, it is definitely a great meal. This one is my personal favorite. Although Gam Ja Tang is more famous in Incheon, there are plenty of Gam Ja Tang restaraunts in Seoul as well.
3. Boo Dae JJigae (ë¶ëì°ê°)
Boo Dae Jjigae is a great thing to eat with a group of friends (everyone eats out of the same dish). This is a spicy soup consisting of ramen noodles, vegetables, beans, and different meats (beef, hot dog, spam). This is also very spicy, but not quite as spicy as Gam Ja Tang.
One interesting fact about Boo Dae JJigae is that it is a relatively modern dish. It originated sometime after the Korean War, when Koreans first had access to American foods like hot dogs and spam. By the way, Koreans for some reason absolutely LOVE spam.
One thing to avoid is Bo Shin Tang (ë³´ì í)! I would say that a general rule to follow is to try just about everything. But why do I list this as an exception? Bo Shin Tang is dog soup. So unless if you want to brag to your friends that you've tried dog, you don't want to eat this.
As time passes, Bo Shin Tang is becoming less and less popular, so your chances of running into a restaraunt serving this will become fewer and far between.