UPDATE: This restaurant is permanently closed 😦
If you read travel guides, you’ll definitely know MiGaBon (미가본). However, did you know that on the 1st floor, right under MiGaBon, is another famous restaurant? I didn’t actually know until I found out that people queueing outside were, in fact, queueing for this seolnongtang restaurant, and not MiGaBon! (mindblown)
Seolnongtang is one of those dishes I only eat in Korea, and I LOVE eating this in winter because it’s so warm and hearty. I don’t think I’ve seen Korean places in SG serving this, or maybe I just don’t eat at enough Korean restaurants back here, idk. The place always seems to be quite packed (with tourists), so we ended up at this counter seat with our backs facing the kitchen. It was a tad squeezy, but nothing too uncomfortable.
I was initially tempted to get Tri-Seolnongtang (I’m a sucker who always goes for dishes labelled as ‘best’, ‘chef recommended’), but in the end I decided against it
because Korea was already making me eat more than I ever did in my whole life and ordered normal seolnongtang. I am so glad I did, because the portions of meat are so generous, even in the normal bowl! Please don’t be fooled by the photo and think that all they serve in the soup is spring onion 😂
The soup can be a little bland if you veer towards a stronger flavour preference, but this can be easily resolved with a little salt (& kimchi, if that’s one way you don’t mind). I personally really liked that the taste wasn’t too overpowering because it felt like a good way to cleanse my system, after about a week of sinfully good food. It’s also served hot – not too hot that it scalds you, but gives you a bit of a homely feeling, almost like you’re enjoying this home-cooked meal in the comfort of your house.
8000 won (~ SGD 9.74) is an average price for a meal like this – actually I think you can already count your blessings that it doesn’t cost more than 10 000 won. Food in Seoul is really not that cheap, and if you consider the fact that you get free flow of kimchi and water, I thought Sinseon Seolnongtang’s price was definitely reasonable.
The customer service in this restaurant is okay, no bad experience here in my memory. The only downside is that you if come at the wrong timings, you will find yourself stranded outside in the heat/cold and queueing to get a seat in Sinseon Seolnongtang for some time. What’s also interesting is that this restaurant is open 24 hours, so you can actually hop in for an early breakfast or late night supper as well, whichever you prefer!
I definitely want to eat this particular seolnongtang again when I visit Korea again. I wouldn’t call this my favourite seolnongtang in Korea, but I can understand why there is a hype over this particular restaurant. Be sure not to miss this place if you want to have some good, warm soup in your system, especially in winter.
Address: 3-1, Myeongdong 10-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
If you stay in Skypark Central Myeongdong, you’ll be happy to know that this (together with MiGaBon) is actually nearby! Euljiro 3-ga station is also near, so that’s the station you should take to in order to reach Sinseon Seolnongtang. Coming from Myeongdong station may be a little more troublesome ~
One prominent landmark in the area that I can remember is Olive Young (it’s directly opposite this restaurant). I know there are quite a few Olive Youngs in Myeongdong, but if you are coming from Euljiro 3-ga station, there is only one. I’ll use Naver Maps to show you the route from Euljiro: