“The Korean teacher says Bongchu Jjimdak is better,” which was why we made our way to this jjimdak restaurant. Better than which one – she didn’t announce, but we assumed it is the popular Andong Zzimdak (with the ‘Z’). Even my tour guide says so “Bongchu”.
Andong jjimdak is a chicken dish mixed with vegetables marinated in a ganjang Korean soy sauce based sauce, originated from Andong City. The name literally means “Andong’s steamed chicken.”
To make things a little more complicated, this restaurant was first called Andong Jjim-Dak when it first started in 2000 at DaeHak-ro, but was forced to change its name to “Bongchu”.
The menu is lean and simple – Braised Chicken is sizes of large (39,000 Won for 4 pax SGD$46), medium (31,000 Won, SGD$37) and small (22,000 Won, SGD$26). The version without bones cos 2,000 Won extra for each sizing.
Ah-huh, the entire restaurant serves just this one dish – jjimdak with dong chi mee cold radish kimchi as accompaniment.
After about a 10 minutes wait, the ENORMOUS white plate of pre-cooked braised chicken, mushroom, soft potatoes, sweet carrots and sweet potato noodles arrived in this dark gooey sauce of spicy peppers and soy. Talk about having this dish during winter.
A pair of scissors would be presented to cut up the meat and noodles into biteable portions.
My favourite component was the flat translucent cellophane-like sweet potato noodles – slippery, smooth and flavoursome after absorbing the scrumptious sauce.
Comparing to the other brand, this sauce comes across being lighter, cleaner and less spicy (not saying it is not, but at least it was not that tongue-scorching.)
One who has lower tolerance for spice and wants to appreciate more of the chicken flavour would appreciate Bongchu better.
While we initially said “So big, cannot finish,” those words were taken back after a few minutes. Just couldn’t stop slurping and slurping.
It was not THAT easy to find Bongchu Jjimdak at Meyong-dong. We asked the tourist information centre who gave a prompt response “Turn right, turn left, walk, its above Innisfree.” (We searched Google Maps which gave us Andong instead.)
Bongchu Jjimdak 봉추찜닭
33-9, Myeong-dong 2-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul
Opening Hours: 11am – 11pm