Glamorous Penguin | 글래머러스 펭귄

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Glamorous Penguin is established within the expat-friendly Itaewon locale which is home to a myriad of private and national art museums, and also a walking distance from Hannamdong Cafe Street. Despite being a weekday mid-morning, Glamorous Penguin was already bustling with a caffeine-hungry crowd! Itaewon is the artsy-fartsy neighbourhood similar to Gangnam, but with less self-established private corporations. The entire Itaewon is more or less a controlled tourism district.

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Looking for somewhere to rest your feet? These cute twin penguins will definitely capture your attention!

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What looks good: cheesecakes, carrot cake, muffins, polenta, velvet cake, home-made chocolate cookies. The double-storeyed bakery cafe has plenty of seating spaces, although it can get pretty crowded.

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Ordered a strawberry latte! Plenty of fresh strawberries to chew on in the mixture of milk and juice.

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The nearest station is Hangangjin and if you keep walking along the main street in the direction of Itaewon station, keep to the right side of the road. You make to make a right turn into an alley and you’ll spot a couple of chic trendy diners. Voila!

글래머러스 펭귄
Hannam-dong, Seoul, Korea 743-41

Daily 10am – 10pm

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Thanks Nature Cafe | 양카페

Only in Seoul, you get to dine with a lamb! With the proliferation of overrated cat and dog cafes, Hongdae’s first and only sheep cafe (양카페) has been making headlines. Owner of the cafe, Kwang-Ho Lee, is spotted feeding the frisky little ones in their outdoor enclosure. Much to my surprise, the sheep didn’t smell bad! In fact, all I could smell were the aromatic scent of coffee and waffles.

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Lean over and grab a handful of wool! I got a bit excited when I got to touch the sheep, just like in a petting-zoo. See that man squatting in the corner? That’s the kind-looking boss and manager. It’s feeding time!

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Omnomnom. It’s breakfast time for us humans too.

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Thanks Nature Cafe is famous for their waffles, which they serve in a variety of styles. All of which are home-made on the spot, served fresh as you order.

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When my Berrynana Waffle arrived, I went wild at how beautiful food can actually look. Is this even edible? HELL YES!

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Strawberries are indeed in season – they’re so fresh, sweet and succulent! The waffles are crisp on the outside, soft on the inside, served with a layer of fresh cream sandwiched between the fruits and the generous scoop of vanilla ice-cream. Hands-down the best waffles I’ve had!! (beats the one I had in London’s Pure Waffle). Ordered a peppermint tea to go along.

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My goodness, I just had to snap this photo of this chubby-cheeks kid. He was speaking to the sheep, begging them to come out from their enclosure. HOW ADORABLE!! The kid I mean! Seriously, I want my future child to be plump so that I can play with his/her cheeks.

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The owner loves his sheep so much, these photos melted my heart.

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Yes I caught a snapshot of it looking at me!
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Poor disappointed kid. After the sheep had their tummies filled, they insisted on remaining behind bars.

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The cafe is on a basement level on the left-hand side of the uphill street leading up to Hongik University. Blink and you might miss it! So keep your eyes peeled for this green sign.

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Thanks Nature Cafe
마포구 서교동 486 서교푸르지오상가 B121, Seoul, Korea 121-842
Mon – Sun: 11:00 am – 11:00 pm

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Zoo Coffee | 주커피

Need I say more? The name speaks for itself. It’s a jungle in here!

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I love this wildlife, amazonian concept. There are different animals and wildlife knick knacks in each Zoo Coffee house.

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Found this chain coffee house on my walk to Yeouido and popped in for dessert! Tiramisu…my love.

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Off I go, again.

26-1 Yeoeuido-dong, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul, South Korea
+82 2-780-2482

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Deux Crèmes | 듀 크렘

Gangnam’s Garosugil is laden with patisseries, cake-shops, chocolatiers and coffeehouses. Deux Crèmes is one of the most popular and renowned pastry houses that occupies a standalone 3-storey building along the main street, drawing in a steady stream of dessert-seeking locals and foreigner everyday, and feeding this steady stream with their very special pie-tart-cake hybrids.

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Read: Deux Crèmes was awarded Travel CNN’s Best pie-tart-cake hybrid for their Caramel Tiramisu. I think, that Deux Crèmes should be awarded best modernist architectural design for dessert cafes.

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I tried their Muscato Tart: glazed champagne grapes cushioned with a layer of banana and custard cream on a thick crisp crust. Sounds like heaven on a slice? Tastes like heaven on a slice!

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The kind pastry chefs awarded me photographic opportunities and I snapped away at their amazing, aesthetically appealing tarts. These pastries are actually freshly baked behind the counters by talented chefs in white.

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If you’re in the area, you’ve got to seek this place out because their tarts, though pricier than the usual range, is worth every penny. There are over 100 different champagnes and wines to go with the tarts, and the in-house sommeliers can tell you exactly what wines go with the dessert you’re having! Such personalized service makes for a very awesome dessert experience.

강남구 신사동 533-11
533-11 Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
+82 2 545 7931
Daily, 10am – midnight
Free WiFi
Tarts range from ₩6,500 to ₩8,000

For Quick Reference:

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

50 Fifty No Stress Cafe | 피프티

Reminiscent of a warehouse and appearing somewhat like a garage amidst reformation, the high-ceilinged 50 Fifty Cafe in uptown Apgujeong is hip and trendy with a rustic Junk-Style appeal. Diners can choose between smoking and non-smoking seating areas to enjoy a truly stress-free meal amongst the company of friends and tasteful lounge music. Kick back with a 50 Fifty cuppa, or settle down with something off their brunch set menu!

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Brunch set: meat sauce wrap, sausages, chips and salad. A piping cup of Americano on the side. 16000₩20140323-110723.jpg

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The kitchens are on the upper floor, an open concept overlooking the dining space. You can observe your food being prepared.

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Extremely filling and satisfying brunch! Lots of artistic and media companies are within the Gangnam district, hence the abundance of cafes in this part of town for lunch meetings, tea breaks and coffee runs. 50 Fifty was pretty quiet for a Friday mid-afternoon, and I suspect it has more patrons on the weekends. For such a trendy upscale restaurant, it must attract the mid-20s and early-30s crowd.

646-1 Sinsa-Dong, Gangnam-Gu (Apgujeong)
강남구 신사동 646-1, Seoul
02-544-8050
Daily 11am – Midnight
Free WiFi

Quick Reference:

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Bloom and Goûté | 블룸 앤 구떼

“To see a World in a Grain of Sand And a Heaven in a Wild Flower.”  Nothing else better invokes purity of thoughts than innocence of youth. In this rustic foliage of greens and florals, William Blake’s Auguries of Innocence springs to mind.

Off the beaten track on Gangnam-Gu’s Garosu-Gil is my favorite cafe by a long shot. Bloom and Goûté cafe is an intimate space, tastefully decorated with bouquets of blooming flowers, oak wood tables, chic garlands and housed in exposed brick walls in an independent two-storeyed building. Downstairs, flowers are tended to, bought and sold, along with displays of cakes and other mouth-watering desserts. Upstairs is where the seating spaces run out quickly during the busiest periods.

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The concept of B&G was created by marrying the influences of European cultures. Co-owners Lee Jin-sook studied botany in London while Jo Jung-hee undertook baking in Paris. From classy table settings (one-of-a-kind floral arrangements) to the uniqueness of B&G’s sweet and savoury menu, a European bohemian charm permeates the space, blending beautifully with scents of musk and florals.

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A Maximowiczia and Mint Detox Soda – a Bloom and Goûté Special.20140323-002529.jpg

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Some of B&G’s desserts. They do have the staples such as waffles, salads, sandwiches, but I’m told their special is the homemade strawberry cheesecake.

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I want to lie in a bed of roses and love flowers forever.

534-6 Sinsa-dong Gangnam-gu Seoul
서울 신사동 강남구 545-24
02-545-6659
DAILY 11AM – Midnight

Quick reference:

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Coffee Chu | 커피츄

What’s good here? Blueberry and peanut churros! A churros specialty cafe  was exactly what I was keeping an eye out for. Opened by the CEO of Pledis Entertainment (Afterschool, NU’EST, Son Dambi), the cafe is decked out in signed paraphernalia from their artistes.

If you’re looking for a particular cafe on Sinsa-dong, blink and you might miss it. I very nearly looked past Coffee Chu until the huge CHURROS sign caught a glint of the afternoon sun.

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Very Berry – churros with a flood of injected jam. Not sickly sweet, just adequately flavoured! Yummy ^^20140323-005124.jpg

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커피츄
가로수길 커피츄
or
682-10, Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
(7 Itaewon-ro 54-gil)
+82 2 790 6821
Hangangjin

Was planning to visit the one at Itaewon but it seems like I’ve found Garosu-gil branch. Will be heading to Itaewon tomorrow and this leaves more time for me to check out the other cafes over there!
Ciao ^^

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

A Twosome Place | 투썸플레이스

Exploring Apgujeong Rodeo Street led me to CGV Cinema at Sinsa-Dong, Gangnam-Gu. This dessert cafe used to be A Twosome Place by 51k, owned by actor So Ji Sub, until the 1st of January this year when this was turned into a normal Twosome Place cafe. Linked directly to the cinema, you can purchase coffee and movie tickets at the same place.

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My strawberry macarons cake…watch as I dissect it slowly till I’ve cured my boredom.

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The TWOSOME is a piece of yummy edible chocolate.20140322-233521.jpg

The top half is my favourite part! The macaron shell.20140322-233528.jpg

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투썸플레이스
1F 602 Sinsa-Dong
Gangnam-Gu, Seoul
Level 1 CGV Cinema

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Kona Beans | 코나빈스

Hot Chocolate before heading homewards – ain’t I glad Kona Beans Cafe (as well as many coffee chains along Hongdae) are open 24hrs to keep us well-fed on coffee and happiness.

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Kona Beans is heavy on the Hawaiian theme, considering they use a premium Hawaiian roast. There are actual trees in the middle of the cafe, for god’s sake!

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Loving how huge this cafe is, and my piping hot chocolate is slightly salty like salted caramel and dark chocolate. So frickin’ yummy!

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코나빈스 홍대점
353-2 Seogyo-dong Mapo-gu, Seoul
+82 2-322-1777
or
640-9, Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea
+82 2-543-0070

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Cafe Organic | 카페오가닉

Junk and instant food is the bane of my existence and yet I’m a sucker for anything that’s quick, ready-to-eat and hence highly-preserved. In a bid to have something less artery-clogging for a change, I had been eyeing this beautiful cafe at its Hongdae location all afternoon. Cafe Organic is a double-storeyed healthy alternative to cafe-style waffles, honeyed bread and fresh-cream pancakes.

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Love these quotes ^^

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With its all-organic coffees and freshly-squeezed juices, its beverages range from 7000KRW to 13000KRW – slightly pricier than the other coffeehouses. The service was excellent though – as I’ve also noticed of most stand-alone cafes as opposed to chain-store coffeehouses.

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My fresh shrimp salad with orange dressing! A really yummy mix of tasty fresh greens and zesty tangerine. It was pretty filling considering the huge portion (but as usual I got hungry pretty quickly again afterwards).

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The salad costs 16000KRW – pretty affordable considering its portions. Would definitely LOVE to come back to try their almond nuts and chicken caesar salad (it was soldout that evening!)

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카페오가닉
마포구 서교동 339-1
339-1 Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul
Tel: 02-332-4650

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean