After a long day of sightseeing and night-time fun, grabbing some tasty treats is a must. Whether you want to go out or enjoy a more quiet night indoors watching soap operas with some friends, most eateries are operational 24-7, or at least late into the night, and most deliver. If fact, restaurants pride themselves on their fast delivery ser-vices. Finding restaurants that deliver is not difficult, and there are several smartphone apps that allow customers to order food: Yogiyo, Bae-dal Tong and Woowa Brothers, to name a few. The food ranges from hamburgers and pizza to an entire meal with numerous side dishes. The most popular delivery foods are fried chicken, pizza and Korea-style Chinese food.
If you don’t want to eat in, consider searching for the slightly elusive mobile food trucks. In 2014, the government loos-ened up its licensing laws to allow mobile food vendors, giving birth to the food truck. However, only certain public areas, mainly amusement parks, vacation spots and other open outdoor spaces, can be serviced by these trucks. This forces the trucks to remain largely stationary, but they offer some great eats if you happen to stumble
upon one. The three most popular trucks are the Kimchi Bus, the 100 Food Truck and 2 Man Pizza.
Korea is home to several cities that offer interesting sights, tasty food and diverse nighttime activities.
If you can’t find any of these elusive trucks, but still crave some street food, pull up a stool at an outdoor food tent (pochang-macha) for some delicious stir-fried rice cake, vegetables and fish cakes in red chili paste sauce (tteokbokki). If that’s not doing it for you, try some fish cakes on a stick, or even some grilled beef or pork with a sweetened soy sauce marinade. The owners are extremely kind and may even give some free food if you strike up a conversation with them, in Korean or even English. They usually open shortly before dusk near riversides, college districts and shopping areas. In every season, in every city, these little tents are great places to beat nighttime hunger.
While Itaewon, Seoul’s traditionally foreigner-friendly neighborhood, has street food, it is famous for the international restaurants and bars lining its alleyways. The dining is top quality, and cuisines from around the world are available. English can be heard as much as Korean in Itaewon, which makes it a great place to get your feet wet when experiencing Seoul’s nightlife. To try a more “Korean” nightlife experience, the neighborhood around Hongik University, or “Hongdae,” is a great area, filled with cheap restaurants, bars and clubs.
Since Hongdae is basically a college town, the streets are always packed with good-natured students, and drinks and food are usually inexpensive. It is also a great place to visit coffee shops and tearooms. In these artsy cafes, beverages can be pricey, but customers are actually paying for their seats and can stay as long as they like. For those who wish to drink something a bit stronger, there are numerous bars in Hongdae that serve rice beer (makgeolli).If you want to try Korea’s most popular alcohol, soju, Busan sells variations that are less-alcoholic and sweeter than other brands. People going for a macho image usually drink C1 soju, while others prefer
the “Ye” series of soju. However, a wide variety of domestic and imported spirits can be found in most of the country’s pubs and bars. Busan, being next to the sea, is also known for its fresh seafood, as well as its seed hotcakes, pork soups and pan-fried green onion “pancakes” with seafood.