Having debuted back in 2013, the seven-member boy band Bangtan Boys (BTS) is Korea’s hottest international sensation as of now. They received the Best New Artist prize in 2014 and had the record of over 1.5 million albums sold in 2016. Just this year came their biggest break, one that pleasantly shocked the world: BTS became the first K-pop group to win a prestigious Billboard award. Voted by fans, they won the Top Social Artist award. Now that they have gained international recognition, fans from all over the world are visiting Seoul to follow their footsteps. Let’s take a look at BTS’s favorite spots in Seoul!
Yoojung Sikdang – The Min’s – Giani’s Napoli Garosu-gil Branch – Hamkyeongdo Chapssalsundae
Course 1. The Source of BTS’s Energy, Yoojung Sikdang
Yoojung Sikdang is the restaurant that cared for the members of BTS during their days as a K-pop rookie. The restaurant is located near the dance studio at which they had their practice sessions. The BTS members usually order the grilled black pork belly with gojuchang (chili paste) sauce and dolsot (hot stone pot) bibimbap. Also on the menu are various Korean traditional dishes including cheonggukjang (fermented soybean paste soup), budae-jjigae (kimchi and sausage stew), cold bean-soup noodles and cold buckwheat noodles made with young summer radish kimchi. Yoojung Sikdang is perfect for those looking for an affordable meal, as all its menu items cost no more than 8,000 won. Visitors that come alone are recommended to get the dolsot (hot stone pot) bibimbap made with pan-seared black pork, while those who come in pairs should get the ssambap (rice wrap) course which comes with leafy vegetables, jeyuk bokkeum (sweet and spicy pork stir-fry), rice and doenjang-jjigae (soybean paste soup).
Address : 14 Dosan-daero 28-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
Hours ：Monday-Friday 08:30-21:30, Saturday-Sunday 08:30-19:00
Phone : +82-2-511-4592
Course 2. BTS’s Go-To Café, The Min’s
Run by Lee Chang-min, a member of the K-pop group 2AM and Homme, The Min’s located in Apgujeong-dong is known for frequent visits by the members of Bangtan Boys. Inside the café, visitors will be able to see a wide array of pictures and autographs of BTS, as well as hand-written letters written by the members. Some of the pictures depict Bangtan Boys drinking fresh-squeezed lemonade and cherryade, the most popular drink items on the menu. The cute and homey café is perfect place to escape the blistering summer sun and to get refreshed by some cold, fizzy fruit ade.
Address : 1F 330 Apgujeong-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
Phone : +82-2-512-1452
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Course 3. Jin’s Off-Day Hangout Spot, Giani’s Napoli Garosu-gil Branch
Giani’s Napoli located in Garosu-gil is known to be the restaurant where the BTS member Jin frequents with his friends. The eatery is famed for its traditional Italian fare and authentic wood-fired pizza made with high quality ingredients. The menu features about a dozen types of pizza including Quattro Formaggio topped with four types of Italian cheese. One bite of its delightful pizza and visitors might suspect that Jin is an undercover food critic. As the restaurant offers spacious seating, visitors can sit back and enjoy their pizza—and even spot Jin walking in on one of these evenings when he is free from his rigorous schedule.
Giani’s Napoli Garosu-gil branch
Address : 15 Dosan-daero 15-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul.
Phone : +82-2-3416-0316
Hours : Monday-Sunday 11:30-22:30 (Closed on national holidays)
Course 4. BTS’s Healthy Choice, Hamkyeongdo Chapssalsundae
The BTS members Jin and Jungkook are frequent diners at Garak-dong’s Hamkyeongdo Chapssalsundae, a restaurant specialized in sundaeguk (Korean blood sausage soup). What exactly is it about the dish that keeps bringing BTS members back to the restaurant? The secret is in the method and ingredients. The sundaeguk (Korean blood sausage soup) served at Hamkyeongdo Chapssalsundae is slow-cooked in a huge Korean traditional cauldron. After it is cooked, chili sauce is added to the broth, creating a perfect balance of the savory and spicy. The bowl comes filled with chapssal sundae (Korean blood sausages made with glutinous rice) which are made in-house, daily. Another menu item favored by Jin and Jungkook is the suyuk (steamed pork) which comes with tangy shrimp fish sauce. Thinly-sliced, the pieces of steamed pork are extremely soft and juicy.
Address : 32 Songpa-daero 28-gil, Songpa-gu, Seoul
Phone : +82-2-403-8822
Hours : 12:00-24:00
Source: Visit Seoul.net