The Best Beef Broth Korean Restaurants In Seoul
Beef broth is a Korean classic comfort food which is mainly enjoyed by the local people. Your point of view of Korean food will totally change after trying this yummy dish! Trying beef broth will also help you to better understand the past and recent times in Seoul. “Beef Broth Restaurants” is the first article in a series of Korean classic comfort food. Read on to find out more about the best beef broth Korean restaurants in Seoul.
Things To Know Before Visiting Seoul
Korean cuisine is known for its flavorful and diverse range of dishes, and meat soups are no exception. Among the popular Korean meat soup dishes, Galbitang stands out as a classic comfort food made with beef short ribs, radish, and glass noodles in a clear broth. Another popular soup is Samgyetang, a nourishing soup made with a whole chicken stuffed with garlic, jujube, and glutinous rice. Other meat soup dishes include Seolleongtang, a beef bone soup that is simmered for hours to extract the rich flavor and nutrients, and Janchi Guksu, a chicken or beef soup with thin wheat noodles, vegetables, and sometimes dumplings. These meat soups are not only delicious, but they are also highly nutritious and perfect for cold winter days.
- Restaurant Foreigner Discounts: Quite a few restaurants in Seoul have special discounts for foreigners who make a reservation online. Check out Klook, which has a wide selection of discounted restaurants.
- Restaurant Reviews: If you want discover more Korean food reviews check out my articles about Korean food and about restaurants in Seoul.
What Is Korean Beef Broth?
Most Koreans have nice memories of homemade beef broth dating back to their childhood. Whenever Korean kids were sick their mother would prepare this fresh soup and serve this to the children. Or when parents were away for the day they would leave a batch of soup for their children. At that time, most of the kids got bored of having this food. However after growing up and leaving the nest, Koreans would start to miss this comfort food.
It takes a lot of time and effort to prepare beef broth at home. So you will find a lot of beef broth restaurants in every city around Korea. There are two different types of Korean beef broth, namely Gomtang and Seolleongtang. These two soups taste so similar that people sometimes get confused. Below you can find the explanation about these two famous Korean soups.
1. What Is Gomtang?
Gomtang (곰탕) is a soup that was originally made from the beef and ox intestines. This thick soup is cooked by boiling down beef broth from certain parts of the cow like the shank, brisket, beef leg bone or an ox tail over an extended period of time. If the restaurant puts the beef and bone together, the ox bone soup becomes thick and milky white. If they put only beef and ox intestine in the soup it becomes thick and clear.
Usually Gomtang restaurants use nicer parts of the cow than Seolleongtang restaurants. So that makes Gomtang slightly more expensive than Seolleongtang. Most Gomtang restaurants serve seasoned soup which already has soy sauce in it.
You eat gomtang using flat metal Korean chopsticks and a spoon.
2. What Is Seolleongtang?
Seolleongtang (설렁탕) is basically the same procedure, boiling down a beef broth over an extended time. What makes it different from Gomtang is that Seolleongtang is cooked by boiling down beef broth mainly using beef bone like shank or tail bone together with brisket. It is basically a Korean bone marrow soup. That’s why this soup much thicker than Gomtang.
Not a single Seolleongtang restaurant puts seasoning in the soup. You will always find ground salt, black pepper, red chili paste and chopped green onion which you should use to season the soup yourself.
Recommended Beef Broth Korean Restaurants In Seoul
Because both Gomtang and Seolleongtang are the main comfort food in Korea so there are plenty of restaurants in Seoul. But below we introduce to you only the best Gomtang and Seolleongtang restaurants in Seoul.
1. The Best Seolleongtang Restaurants In Seoul
Listed below are our favourite Seolleongtang restaurants located in Seoul. Most of them are well known restaurants but there are a few hidden gems that are only known to locals.
1.1 이문 설농탕 (Imun Seolnongtang)
This restaurant opened in 1907 and has been serving Seolleongtang for over hundred years. This is a local famous Korean restaurant in Seoul.
It is one of the recommended Michelin guide restaurants in Seoul. On the table you will find two different types of kimchi, sea salt, black pepper, spicy chili paste and chopped green onions. Without seasoning this soup is quite bland, so don’t forget to season it before you start eating.
Our tip to make it taste better is: first season the soup with salt, black pepper and green onions without adding spicy paste or kimchi juice to the soup. Once you have finished half of the soup, add either the spicy paste or kimchi juice. This allows you to taste two different styles of soup during one visit at the Imun Seolleongtang.
Address: 38-13 Ujeongguk-ro, Gyeonji-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Price: 9,000 – 13,000
Opening times: 8:00 AM – 21:00 PM
Official Website: Check the official website here
1.2 참설농탕 (Cham Seolleongtang)
Cham Seollongtang is a 24 hour restaurant in Gangnam. Normally when people see these kind of 24 hours restaurants, they easily associate it with low quality food. But this restaurant serves a very high quality Seolleongtang alongside with 3 different types of kimchi.
The price of the soup is very reasonable compared to other restaurants in the Gangnam area. Don’t forget to season it before you start eating and once you finished half of the soup add some spicy paste or kimchi juice to mix things up.
Address: 1340, Seocho-dong, Seocho-gu, Seoul
Price: 8,000 – 12,000
Opening times: 24 hours
2. The Best Gomtang Restaurants In Seoul
One of the must-try dishes when visiting Seoul is Gomtang, a hearty beef broth soup made by simmering beef bones for hours until the rich, savory flavor is extracted. While Gomtang can be found at many restaurants throughout Seoul, there are a few spots that stand out for their exceptional taste and quality. In this article, we will explore some of the best Gomtang restaurants in Seoul that you should definitely add to your foodie bucket list. From traditional hole-in-the-wall eateries to upscale dining experiences, these restaurants offer some of the most delicious and authentic Gomtang dishes you’ll ever taste.
2.1 애성회관 한우곰탕 (Aeseong Hoegwan Hanwoo Gomtang)
This amazing restaurant is located between the Myeongdong area and Seoul City Hall. You can see the owners full name in the name of the restaurant. Which means he is so proud of his Gomtang. Actually in this Seoul Gomtang they used juicy and thick pieces of Korean A+ or A++ brisket which melts in your mouth.
Among all beef broth restaurants is Seoul, this broth is the most seasoned so you don’t need to extra herbs to it. Our tip to make taste it better is: order one extra portion of noodles (they put udon noodle inside the soup).
There is also a hidden dish on the menu namely Tuk Tuk Gomtang which has three times more pieces of meat that the regular soup.
Address: 23, Namdaemun-ro 5-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
Price: 8,000 – 14,000
Opening times: 10:00 AM – 21:00 PM break times is between 15:00 PM to 17:00 PM
2.2 하동관 (Hadong Kwan)
Hadong Kwan is over 80 years old, which makes this one of the oldest restaurants in Seoul. As this Michelin Guide restaurant became super popular in Myeongdong, they have opened 4 more branches in the rest of Seoul. If you don’t know what to eat in Myeongdong, this restaurant is a good option.
This Seoul ‘Kwan’ Korean restaurant serves Gomtang with not only slices of the brisket but also beef intestines. Our tip to make it taste better is: first add seasoning to the soup like salt, black pepper and green onions. Wait till you finished half of the bowl before adding kimchi juice to the soup. Plus, here you can order extra kimchi juice and eggs to put inside the soup!
Address: 12 Myeongdong 9-gil, Myeongdong 1(il)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul
Price: 13,000 – 25,000
Opening times: 07:00 AM – 16:00 Pm
Official Website: Click here for official website.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are several great beef broth soup restaurants in Seoul, but some of the top recommendations include Hanwoori Sogogi Gukbap, Gukbap Alley, and Dongjin Market Gomtang.
Hanwoori Sogogi Gukbap is known for its rich and flavorful broth made from beef bones, while Gukbap Alley is a street full of small restaurants specializing in beef broth soup dishes. Dongjin Market Gomtang is famous for its tender beef brisket and light yet flavorful broth.
At Hanwoori Sogogi Gukbap, the signature dish is the beef broth soup with rice (sogogi gukbap), while at Gukbap Alley, you can find a variety of beef broth soup dishes, including seolleongtang and yukgaejang. Dongjin Market Gomtang specializes in gomtang, a beef broth soup made with beef bones and brisket.