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Korean BBQ | © Thomas Sauzedde / Flickr
Korean BBQ | © Thomas Sauzedde / Flickr
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The 8 Best Korean BBQ Spots in Seoul

Picture of Mimsie Ladner
Updated: 9 April 2018
With a gogi-jip (‘meat house’) on just about every corner, it can be an undeniably daunting task to choose the right place to dine in Seoul. Nevertheless, trying Korean BBQ is a must-do activity on any visit to South Korea, whether it’s a casual dinner after a long day of sightseeing or a 4am pit stop on a night out on the town. Here are the best restaurants in Seoul to grill up tasty BBQ dishes such as galbi and samgyeopsal.

Wangbijib (왕비집)

Restaurant, Korean, $$$
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For the first timer looking to delve into the delicious world of Korean BBQ, there’s no better place to start than Wangbijib. Here, waitstaff grill the meat for hungry diners so all you have to do is sit back and watch the magic unfold. Furthermore, the restaurant chain is known for having excellent ventilation systems in place so you can enjoy your meal without smelling like gogi upon your departure. Of course, the real beauty of Wangbijib lies in the quality of their melt-in-your-mouth meat, which is served lightly seasoned with salt. ‘Snowflake’ marbling, which refers to the veins of white that adorn especially prized cuts, ensures a buttery richness without too much fattiness. Jal meokkesseumnida! (Bon appetit!)
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Baetjang (뱃장)

Restaurant, Korean, BBQ, $$$
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Although it was once unheard of to be able to walk into a Korean BBQ restaurant and order a meal for one, numerous restaurants are starting to cater to people dining alone. Baetjang, for example, boasts a long bar perfectly suited for solo travelers and introverts, who are able to cook their own meat on miniature grills. What about the meat, you ask? It’s among the best you can get in the city. The restaurant’s all-Hanu (Korean beef) menu includes skirt meat, sirloin, and short loin, and while the minimum order starts at 30,000 won, you won’t be sorry for paying a little extra for this incredible flavor experience. Just go easy on the soju so you can fully enjoy the flavor experience that awaits you.
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Palsaek Samgyeopsal (팔색삼겹살)

Restaurant, Korean, BBQ, $$$
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If pork is more of your thing, save plenty of room for copious amounts of fresh, local samgyeopsal (pork belly) at Palsaek Samgyeopsal. Here, thick, fatty slices of meat are seasoned with eight types of sauces including traditional soybean paste and pepper paste, along with more unique options like ginger, ginseng, pine leaves, herbs, curry, and wine. Copious portions are served with an array of all-you-can-eat fresh veggies, and prices are reasonable. For these reasons, Palsaek Samgyeopsal is a popular go-to for large groups. In fact, it’s popularity has even prompted expansion to Melbourne, Australia, where the restaurant chain promotes the dynamic flavors of Korean cuisine.
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Mapo Sutbul Galbi (마포숯불갈비)

Restaurant, Korean, BBQ, $$$
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Don’t let the unassuming interior of Sutbul Mapo Galbi fool you. What it lacks in décor, it makes up for in its exquisite marinated galbi, or short ribs. The secret to the tasty dish is the restaurant’s special marinade recipe, which utilizes plums in place of the more traditional brown sugar that creates a natural sweetness, taking the sauce to an entirely new level. Friendly servers are also willing to help you cook the meat, and explain how to pair the galbi with the different dips that are provided. As an added bonus, Sutbul Mapo Galbi never closes, so you can enjoy BBQ at any hour of the day.
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WooSung Galbi (우성갈비)

Restaurant, Korean, BBQ, $$$
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Tucked into an alley of the bustling Yaksu Market, WooSung Galbi is a perfect place for the visitor seeking a more authentic, old-school Korean dining experience. The BBQ joint is furnished with plastic chairs and boasts a rustic interior; its simple aesthetic is mirrored in its menu, which consists of only two items, pork galbi and pork rinds, which are both executed flawlessly. A favorite of local food critics and bloggers, WooSung Galbi is also affordable. For just 12,000 won a serving, you can fill up on galbi without burning a hole in your wallet.
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Seocho Myeonok (서초면옥)

Restaurant, Korean, BBQ, $$$
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While Korean galbi is most often cooked over an open grill, it can also be served in galbi jjim, an addictive dish of quality beef short ribs seasoned in soy sauce, garlic, sugar, and other spices, and simmered and slow-cooked in a beef broth. Perhaps no place is better to try this specialty than Seocho Myeonok, which serves up generous portions of galbi jjim in scorching clay pots. Mushrooms and peppers further flavor the restaurant’s famous broth, adding just the right amount of sweetness and spiciness to create a dish that’s as memorable as it gets.
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Maple Tree House (단풍나무집)

Restaurant, Korean, BBQ, $$$
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Yongsan doesn’t only have superb foreign restaurants. Maple Tree House, for example, offers delicious Korean BBQ in a modern venue. Guests at Maple Tree House should try their perfectly aged hanu (Korean beef) that is cut in thin stripes and tenderly cooked on the grill on your table.
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Mon - Fri:
11:30 am - 10:30 pm
Sat - Sun:
11:30 am - 12:00 am

Tuppul Deungshim (투뿔등심)

Restaurant, Korean, BBQ, $$$
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Not all Korean BBQ is created equal, and this quickly becomes apparent at Tuppul Deungshim. Serving up some of the the highest quality, hardest-to-find Hanu cuts, the restaurant’s prized meats, like its aged sirloin, are top-notch, and pair beautifully with the wines on offer. Unsurprisingly, prices are fairly high, but the restaurant does offer a more affordable lunch menu (with items priced as low as 10,000 won) so that diners on a budget can still enjoy the unique tastes of Tuppul Deungshim.
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