There’s a rumor that couples who walk together along Deoksugung Stone Wall Path, which belongs to Jungdong-gil, end up breaking up. Jungdong-gil is a street that extends from the road next to Deoksugung’s Great South Gate to Seodaemun.
Jungdong-gil has also been at the heart of Seoul’s history. Going back to the Joseon Dynasty, it was the site of Jeongneung, the royal tomb of Queen Sindeok, the second queen of King Taejo Lee Seong-gye. This historical connection led to the street being named Jungdong-gil.
In modern times, it was also where various foreign legations were stationed, and it witnessed significant events in modern Korean history.
“Old-Established Eateries in Jungdong, Seoul: Jungdong Gukshi”
At the end or entrance of Jungdong-gil, which preserves such a long history, you can find a restaurant that has been in business for a long time. It’s called “Jungdong Gukshi,” and you can even find “Jungdong” on the sign.
In the past, it used to be on the first floor, but now it’s a restaurant you can find on the basement floor, where it has been operating in Jungdong for a long time.
“Experience the Rich Flavor of Hanwoo Beef Bone Broth at Jungdong Gukshi”
The menu at Jungdong Gukshi is somewhat simple, consisting of dishes like kalguksu (knife-cut noodles), matdutguk (dumpling soup), and gukbap (rice soup). Here’s a list:
- Jungdong Kalguksu: 11,000 KRW
- Matdutguk: 11,000 KRW
- Jungdong Gukbap: 12,000 KRW
- Son Mandu (Handmade Dumplings): 9,000 KRW
- Kong Gimbap (Seaweed Rice Rolls): 1,000 KRW
- Modumjeon (Assorted Pancakes): 28,000 KRW
- Modumjeon (1/2 Size): 16,000 KRW
- Suyuk (Large): 42,000 KRW
- Suyuk (Medium): 32,000 KRW
- Dubu (Tofu in Soy Sauce): 12,000 KRW
For main dishes, you can find kalguksu, matdutguk, and gukbap. As for side dishes, they offer assorted pancakes, boiled pork slices (suyuk), and tofu, providing a straightforward menu.
However, what sets this place apart is the kalguksu, matdutguk, and gukbap made with a rich broth from boiling Hanwoo beef bones for 15 hours. The extra care taken in skimming off the excess oil during the boiling process contributes to the clean and flavorful broth.
“Jungdong Kalguksu: 11,000 KRW”
On this day, I ordered one serving each of kalguksu and gukbap. Both were characterized by a clear broth made from beef bones, and I could taste the clean flavors.
The noodles in the kalguksu had a delightfully chewy texture. It was a comforting meal, complemented by the kimchi and pickled radishes served alongside.
The restaurant exudes a warm and inviting atmosphere. It carries a nostalgic ambiance, with tables set up in the dining area and even some seating in the rooms.
Given the many office workers in the vicinity, especially during lunchtime, you’ll often see a line forming outside, attesting to its popularity.
For those looking to savor kalguksu or gukbap made with a clean Hanwoo beef bone broth, this is a great place to visit. It’s one of the long-standing eateries that have stood the test of time in Jungdong.
“Seoul Jungdong: Jungdong Gukshi”
- Address: 5 Jungdong-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
- Operating Hours: (Mon-Fri) 11:30 AM – 9:30 PM, (Sat-Sun) 11:30 AM – 8:00 PM