The past months, I am constantly on the look out for anything Korean here in the country. Something accessible, since I cannot always go to Seoul whenever I miss it (I wish lang diba!). It's not only because my blog is recently turning into a klog (Korean themed blog), but these things really interest me as of the moment. I am the type who, once I get into something, I go all-out. That's the reason why never ako nag attempt to start mag Everwing because I just know kakainin din ako ng sistema once I do! 😂
Anyway, if you're also an enthusiast for all things Korean, here are some "Korea In Manila" discoveries by yours truly or with my friends. Some are blog invites, but most are just stuff we tried on our own. If I encounter more K stuff here in the Philippines, I'll be making more posts like this in the future and hopefully turn this into a series. You can also follow our group on Instagram @KoreaInManila for our random, day-to-day finds and happenings. Kamsahamnida! ❤
Korean Food Festival in Marriott Cafe
There's an on-going Korean Food Festival at the Marriott Cafe that you should not miss! Manila Marriott, in collaboration with Korean Cultural Center of the Philippines, flew in a team of 4 esteemed chefs from one of the largest and famous resorts in Seoul, the Elysian Gangchon, to cook authentic Korean dishes for us until July 31, 2017.
During the media launch, we met the chefs and had a brief kitchen tour and cooking demo, took photos wearing the Hanbok (traditional Korean costume), and watched a cultural sword dance called Geommu, which reminded me of Scarlet Heart Ryeo!
The Korean delicacies such as bibimbap, beef bulgogi, japchae, haemul pajeon (or Korean pancakes), kimchi and other Korean side dishes and even desserts will be part of Marriott Cafe's standard buffet. Price starts at Php 1990 (lunch) to Php 2100 (dinner). Follow Manila Marriott Hotel for more info.
Kko Kko Opens in Market! Market!
To me, I finally tasted the best Korean cheese dip in town! Kko Kko, a local Korean themed restaurant partly owned by celebrity and host Grace Lee, takes pride of their original recipes from Korea. Even their kimchi and other side dishes aren't grocery bought, but original recipes by Grace's mom! They recently opened their third store in Market! Market!, and introduced more items in their menu like the snow jelly bingsu. Try it and let me know if you liked it!
Korean Grocery: Assi Fresh Plaza
I chanced upon Assi Fresh Korean convenience store on my way to an event in Taguig. It's in the same building as Relik, so I made sure to stop by after my dinner. Assi Fresh Plaza carries an assortment of Korean foods (raw and cooked), drinks, beauty products, snacks, sauces, etc. Think 7Eleven but filled with just Korean brands! They have soju, cheese ramyeun, Ghana chocolates, gochujang or Korean ketchup, and almost everything that I miss in Korea!
Just learned that they already have several branches around Metro Manila (one near me is in Commerce Center Alabang!). Follow them on Facebook for your questions!
Korean School in Manila: KCC Philippines
Also in Taguig, I discovered the Korean Cultural Center of the Philippines (or KCC) online while I was searching for a school where I can learn how to speak in Korean. Their school is very active in organizing Korean themed exhibits, contests, and other activities like film viewing or even celebrations of Korean celebs' birthdays!
When Ava and I visited the school months ago, they have an on-going art exhibit by Korean artist Han Ho called "Eternal Light". I think they have different featured artists from time to time, currently they are showing "Moving Korea" art installations. Entrance is always FREE. The staff were also kind enough to answer our inquiries regarding their classes, and even allowed us to go around the school. We went to the exhibit, and then their library which is filled with Korean books, magazines, and even Kpop and Kdrama CD collections! I can live here!
I actually tried to enroll for their Korean classes this term, but I was in Seoul during the physical enrolment, thus I missed my slot! Will just wait for their next sessions, and hopefully will get in this time! Make sure to get updates on their next projects and classes by following KCC Philippines on Facebook!
DMZ Docs Korean Film Festival
One of KCC Philippines' projects that I was able to attend to was their day 1 for DMZ Docs Korean Film Festival, which was held last May in UP Diliman. They showed two films that afternoon, one is a documentary about a North Korean woman and her struggles as she escaped their country, while the second is the life changing and unforgettable film "My Love, Don't Cross That River". I am not exaggerating when I say that everyone was crying by the end of the movie!! Will dare say that this is my top favorite foreign film as of the moment, and was able to watch it pa for free! Hope you also get to watch it yourself, and I hope KCC will have more Korean Film Fests in the future.
Seoul Train Korean BBQ
After the film fest, Ava and I decided to maximize our time in Quezon City (since we both live in the south) by having our dinner at the Insta-famous Seoul Train Korean BBQ. Every corner of this restaurant screams Seoul and Kpop! Even their restroom and hallways have a touch of Korea! Make sure to arrive early or eat light snacks before going there, they usually have long lines with small dining capacity! Food and service are both good though, so definitely worth the wait.
Korean Cafe and Bakeshop: Mr. Park's Bread & Cake
While waiting for my friends for our Molito Alabang date, I decided to waste time and have coffee in Mr. Park's Bread & Cake. Aside from the usual cakes and latte, they have at the center of their shop tables filled with breads and pastries. It's like Bread Talk but Korean version, hehe! From browsing their Facebook page, I learned that they have a lot of branches na pala around the Metro, and all their breads they make sure they bake with probiotic which helps relieve digestive discomfort, bloating, and even constipation! Wow.
Planning a Korean food trip? Mr. Park's Bread & Cake Molito is right beside two other Korean places: Chicken & Beer and Ice Flower (best bingsu for me):
Where to go next? What will you try from this list? Tweet me @anagon, let's discuss! ❤😋