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Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup

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A restaurant devoted to one of Seoul's classic dishes Seoul  South Korea

A restaurant devoted to one of Seoul's classic dishes

We had walked by this place with the giant plastic cartoon chicken out front and the sign proclaiming "Korean Chicken Ginseng Soup" and wondered, would that really be a good place to try chicken ginseng soup, a Korean classic? Our tour guide assured us that indeed it was, and when we saw the group of 40 or so salarymen gathered around a long low table throwing back shots of soju, plus the many photos of apparent celebrities posing with the cartoon chicken, we thought, well, why not? The soup was good--definitely enlivened by the spicy side dishes. And I was lucky enough to get the one date-like jujube that was hidden in our bowl. We also got chicken rice porridge that was solid and fried chicken that was slightly spicy. The service was fast--with only a few things in the menu, they can whip it up
pretty quick--and the manager was friendly, pouring our son a Coke on the house. The fluorescent-lit space isn't exactly charming, but with the soap opera on the TV and the toasts being shouted by the businessmen, it felt like a slice of Seoul life we were lucky to see and taste.