Wednesday, June 27, 2012

피맛골 (pi-mat-gol)

Right outside of exit 3 of Jongkak station is one of my favorite streets of Seoul: 피맛골. Pi means to avoid, mat is the wooden chair used to carry elite, and gol is an alleyway. During the Joseon dynasty, people would use the smaller alleys to get around and avoid noblemen (who wants to bow when you are on the way to work?). There is still a maze of side streets in the Jongno area that are wonderful to wander around with great restaurants for dinner. If you take a left right out of exit 3 and walk straight, you'll come to a covered building with tons of jeon and makkeoli places. Delicious. 
The entrance from Jongkak station
The entrance to western 피맛골  is near the backstreets of Gwanghwamun's Kyobo bookstore exit. From there, you can look out for some spicy stir-fried octopus or cut noodles. 

My favorite part, however, is near Insadong/Jongo 2 Ga. If you walk toward Insadong from Jongno 2 Ga you will find an entrance on your left. This narrow streets winds through some interesting street art and one of the best mackerel/makkeoli places that I've ever been to.
Graffiti on the way to the restaurant 
I can't tell you exactly where the restaurant is. There are a tons of different places back there and no exact addresses. Most of them will have great food. I can't even find my pictures from the restaurant's interior... Guess that means I'll have to go back. And just to tempt you ...

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