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The Best Restaurants in Seoul

With everything from street food to Michelin-starred cuisine, Seoul boasts an extensive culinary scene. Be sure to sample specialties like bulgogi (barbecued meat), japchae (stir-fried noodles), and comforting soups, all served with kimchi.
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33-1 Insadong-gil, Gwanhun-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
One of the city’s oldest teahouses, Insadong Chatjip hand-makes everything on its menu, from drinks to desserts. Unlike China’s and Japan’s traditional leaf teas, many of the Korean teas on offer here feature herbs, spices, or...
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27 Myeongdong 8ga-gil, Chungmuro 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Korean for mixed rice, the simple yet satisfying dish bibimbap was conceived as a way to use leftover side dishes before the New Year started. At locations in busy Myeongdong and Insadong, Gogung specializes in the Korean staple, serving it in a...
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2-2 Myeongdong 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Sinseon Seolleongtang is a local chain that specializes in seolleongtang soup, a milky broth that gets its subtle, soothing flavor from simmered ox bone. When combined with tender beef brisket and sliced green onions, the soup is the ultimate...
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317 Dosan-daero, Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Gaon takes diners on a fine-dining journey through Korea’s culinary heritage. For its thoughtful interpretation of traditional food, the Gangnam-based restaurant holds an elusive three-Michelin-star rating, making it more than worthy of a...
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35-4 Insadong-gil, Gwanhun-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Korean fare involves a broad array of dishes deeply rooted in agricultural tradition. To get an overview of the cuisine and sample a bit of everything, head to Seasons Table. You should arrive with an appetite—this restaurant chain has an...
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8-1 Myeongdong 10-gil, Myeongdong 2(i)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
When a restaurant has only four items on the menu, chances are good it will be an expert at preparing them. Myeongdong Kyoja is one such establishment. The restaurant’s signature dish is kalguksu, a hearty soup with chicken broth, hand-cut...
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26 Itaewon-ro 27ga-gil, Itaewon 1(il)-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul, South Korea
If there’s one thing synonymous with Korean cuisine, it’s barbecue, known as bulgogi. In Seoul, dining at a barbecue restaurant is a communal affair. Friends gather around a table and order generous portions of marinated beef or pork,...
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56 Myeongdong-gil, Myeong-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
A bowl of warm juk (Korean rice porridge) is a gratifying way to start the day. Commonly topped with vegetables or meat, the dish is believed to contain healing and nourishing properties. Though mainly eaten for breakfast, juk can be enjoyed at...
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83-24 Cheongdam-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Jungsik is the home of celebrity chef Jung Sik Yim, who is updating Korean cuisine; he’s credited as the first chef to prepare Korean ingredients with molecular-gastronomy techniques. He’s done so well with the main restaurant that he’s also...

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118-5 Banpo-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul, South Korea

Hansik Olbaan is the place to go in Seoul if you want to try a bit of everything, or just have the appetite to justify hitting a gigantic buffet. Extremely popular with South Korean families, the restaurant doesn’t really care that you don’t speak...