After being in Korea for a little over 4 months, I admit it wholeheartedly, that as much as I love Korean food – I miss the variety of international cuisines that most Westernized nations have to offer. I am especially homesick for variety as I live in a rural town of Korea. However, my hunger and thirst for food other than Korean was well met and accommodated by – yes, the foreigner’s home away from home, Itaewon.
Itaewon has many gifts to offer the homesick waygook but I was on a hunt for non-Korean, even more so, non-Asian cuisine. Don’t get me wrong, I love my school ‘lunchy’ and Korean’s have some serious skills in the kitchen. But I wanted something completely different.
We headed up to the back alley of Itaewon, where all the restaurants are – there are tonnes! Just get out of Itaewon station and head behind the Hamilton Hotel and you’ll find there’s the magical street of all good things to eat! For our chosen feasting, we fell head over heels for the Bulgarian restaurant named ‘Zelen’.
Zelen serves simply mouth-watering, amazingly tasty and good food. It’s also beautiful inside and out. You can choose to sit in either. It’s a romantic place as well as a warm and cozy spot for social gatherings. I love it there, and plan to go back with every visitor I get!
I ordered the spinach and cheese stuffed chicken. I can’t remember the Bulgarian name but it’s all translated in English. It was delicious! On my second trip, after bragging about my feast to friends, we all went back and I ordered the stuffed peppers. To die for!
So next time you are in Itaewon, look up the place! It’s a fantastic eat.
2F, 116-14, Itaewon dong, Yongsan gu (서울시 용산구 이태원동 116-14번지 2층).
Ph. +82 2 749 0600; 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. Closed Mondays
By: Ardyn Baia – EPIK Teacher