Seoul Market Cafe

Hey. Hey! Korean food in GR! Korean food in GR!

I visited Seoul Market Cafe about two months ago, within their first week of opening. Located inside one of my favorite stores, Seoul Market, they put up some walls and made a tiny space into a dining area that offers a large selection of traditional Korean jjigaes (stews), soups, Korean BBQ, and stir fried foods.

So don’t hate me. Actually, if you do, I legitimately couldn’t care less. I did have a couple minor complaints about my meal.

First of all, the banchan (side dishes) were good and most importantly, fresh. The complimentary mackerel that comes with jjigaes was fantastic. It made my mind and feelings hurtle back through a portal of time to my childhood. It’s amazing when our senses do that to us, isn’t it? For my meal, I ordered the Kimchi Jjigae. Now, don’t get me wrong, it was good. But, the meat was marinated and sweet, which I didn’t like. And there was much more kimchi than anything else in the stew , so it was actually a bit too sour for me.

Do I still love this place? Yes I sure do. Overall everything was great, and  in my opinion, Grand Rapids needs more cuisine that is culturally diverse and authentic. Not to mention the fact that my opinion is based on only one visit, within their first week of them being open! I’ve only heard great things from others about the place, and the excitement of a legit little Korean restaurant opening here in town cannot be denied.

While you’re there, take the time to look around and see what the rest of the market has to offer. I highly recommend the Cuttle Fish Snacks. Trust me.

 

Advertisements

Fish Ball All Kind, 5.99. (H Mart in Chicago.)

I have a best friend, and his name is Joe. Joe lives in Chicago, and I like to try to visit him at least once a year. Our time is effortlessly focused on good talks, food, playing pool, lots of imbibing, and more food. This trip around, he was excited to take me to a new-ish Korean market called H Mart!

hmartkimchilady

Pictured above is a lady making kimchi. It’s neat to see them making it right before your eyes. Honestly, I didn’t try or buy any. Growing up in a Chinese Korean household, with your mother making damn sure that the table was never missing this fermented cabbage, I have been kimchied out for plenty of years now. (Don’t tell my mom.)

hmartexterior

hmartinterior

When we stepped inside I was quite surprised at the size of the supermarket. It’s massive, with more than plenty of fresh selections. The entire store was very organized and clean. hmartfishballs

hmartpeppers

hmartlady

A lady making a ton of banchan, traditional Korean side dishes. hmartfood

H Mart also has a food court! I was elated. There were many different restaurants, all featuring different Korean foods,  Chinese, and Japanese.

hmartwhatadump

This is what Joe was most excited for. The gentleman that owns the store called What A Dumpling makes all the dumplings he sells, and there were plenty of different kinds! He also packages them up so you can take them home. Yummy stuff, for sure. It was fun sharing several different kinds, and we each had our own favorites. I know earlier on I was inadvertently not so inadvertently dogging kimchi, but I freaking love it in dumplings.

There is also a large section of retail stores, selling everything from electronics to kitchenware to beauty products. I took a couple of photos but there were people either ducking or covering their face in each one so I opted not to post them. Shy or annoyed people not wanting to be in a total stranger’s picture, because you know, Asians just don’t take enough photographs, ever. What a bunch of jerks.

H Mart is a great market! Obviously I don’t shop there often, so the whole experience was just fun for me. The food court alone makes me want to go back the next time I’m in Chicago. Hopefully Joe’s obsession for those dumplings is true love and not just fleeting infatuation.