Food + Soju + Good Times
Ssam-Da-Yun (삼다연) is a Korean BBQ restaurant in Apgu-jung and their claim to fame is Jeju-do island black pig. Native to Jeju-do island is a small breed of pig with black skin, hence the name 흑돼지 (pronounced heuk-doe-ji) that literally translates to black pig. The meat is smoked over burning hay resulting in a unique flavor and chewy texture.
It’s a little pricier than normal pork BBQ prices but still much cheaper than beef in Korea.
The interior was big, the side dish setup was concise, the ingredients looked fresh, and the service was good.
Above pictures were 2 orders of the 목살 (pronounced mok-sal), which is the meat from the neck area. They were big, thick, hearty cuts, with a nice meat to fat ratio; except for those chunks of fat at the ends which we just cut off. Moksal is not as greasy as you might expect, kind of like eating steak. Delicious!
The cheong-guk-jang jjigae (청국장), a thick soybean paste stew, was really good. Its more hearty and spicier than your normal doen-jang jjigae (된장찌개).
Above was 1 order of the 오겹살 (pronounced o-gyeop-sal), which is also pork belly, but has 5 layers of flesh as opposed to 3 layers in samgyeopsal. A nice thick slab with a lot of fat, it almost melts away in your mouth. It was good but you definitely feel guilty.
Above was 1 order of the 항정살 (pronounced hang-jeong-sal), which is meat from the back of the neck. Hangjeongsal is a very chewy cut and the fat is marbled throughout the meat, notice the pink color. But again fat = flavor, so it was very good.
I really liked the thick, quality cuts of meat. They also gave legit portions, i.e. if I had a food scale it would probably go over the stated grams on the menu. One huge negative was that none of the meats had the smokey flavor of Jeju-do black pig, it just tasted like regular pork. If you’re looking to eat pork BBQ in the Apgu-jung area, I would definitely recommend this place, but not if you’re looking for the unique flavor of Jeju-do black pig.
Rating: 7 out of 10
Ssamdayun (삼다연): 02-511-9283, located in between Apgu-jung and Sinsa-dong stations.