soju sunrise

The Soju Sunrise Food Awards 2015

restaurants | January 8, 2016 | By

Yes, here they are: the Korean food industry’s most coveted awards, at least since I came up with the idea in the shower fifteen minutes ago. Here are the Soju Sunrise nominations for my favourite places of 2015.

To be clear, I do mean personal favourites. Despite using the word “best” about 20 times in this post, I don’t claim these as in any sense definitively the top places in Seoul to eat the specific cuisine in each category; rather, these are my favourites, the places I’ve returned to after a good experience to try again, safe in the knowledge that I’m in good hands. There are almost certainly others out there that are better. That’s what the comments section is for!

So without further ado, here are some of my foreign food highlights of the year. Where applicable, there’s a link to my review; otherwise, Google and Naver are your friends. Get there quickly, because my recommendation is like Tasty Road to the power of 10, and there will be lines out the door within hours.

Here’s to 2016!

Best burger:


Firebell (Daechi), Gilbert Burger (Itaewon / Seocho / Sinsa) [above]

Best pizza:

IMG_0570Maddux Pizza (Itaewon) [above]

Best sandwiches:


Rye Post (Itaewon) [above]. Honourable mention: Fat Cat (HBC), Casablanca (HBC)

Best bistro:


The Beastro (Hongdae). Honourable mention: Libertine (Itaewon) [above]

Best Italian:


Brera (Beotigogae) [above]

Best Mexican:

IMG_0330Villa Guerrero (Samseong) [above]. Honourable mention: Don Charly (Gyeongnidan)

Best Indian:


Little India (Itaewon) [above]

Best Thai:


Amazing Thailand (Hongdae) [above]

Best Vietnamese:

IMG_2360Pham Thi Chinh (Wangsimni) [above]

Best American BBQ:

IMG_0320Manimal (Itaewon / Gyeongbokgung) [above]. Very, very honourable mention: Linus BBQ (Itaewon)

Best Japanese:

IMG_0383Nagomi Ramen (Hongdae)

Best brunch:

IMG_4519Guilty Pleasure (Itaewon)

Best of the Rest that doesn’t fit in any other category:


Taverna de Portugal (Hongdae, currently closed), Da Korner (Itaewon) [above]

Best Cafe:

IMG_2076Anthracite (Hongdae) [above]

Best dessert:


Cacaoboom gelato (Gyeongnidan / throughout the city). Honourable mention: Fell & Cole (Hongdae) [above]


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