Olle Guksu: Sing a song of Seongbuk-dong

by Jordan Redmond
Groove Korea

Olle Guksu is a tiny shoebox of a restaurant that specializes in Jeju’s signature porky noodles. Most Korean noodles soups you’ve likely had have been either a myulchi or anchovy-based broth or sometimes sagol or beef bone-based if the dish is dubbed guksi. Jeju’s rendition of kalguksu called, bluntly, gogi-guksu or “meat noodles” features crescents of boiled pork with attached outer rims of velvety fat bobbing around in a pearly white pork bone broth. The noodles are firm but not too much so and are an able vehicle with which to carry the clean-cut broth to your mouth. Accompanying the considerable bowl of noodle soup are some wonderful vinegary side dishes.

Also, if dining with another person or if you’re just massively hungry, order a yachae-jeon as the greasy, chewy, slightly sweet pancake contrasts nicely with the gogi-guksu’s clean taste. There are all of four closely arranged tables in this restaurant as well as a couple of low-perched counter seats. The plain white space, reasonable prices, and simplicity of the food here are representative of some kind of anti-corporate, pro-slow food ethos that a number of restaurants along this corridor echo.

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