Where to eat in Seoul: West n East corean dessert cafe

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Our first day in Seoul was jam-packed, thanks to my sister, who wanted to fit almost all of the tourist attractions in a single day. Visiting cafe W.E. listen or West n East is actually our mid-day treat to ourselves, which was well deserved after we climbed up and down and got lost finding Bukchon Hanok Village. 

W.E. is located in Samcheongdong and just a leisurely walking pace coming from Bukchon Village. You can see the map here: W.E. listen in Google maps. Don't bother looking at Street View as it's outdated - the building that should be W.E. is still under construction.

Being surrounded by tourist spots including Bukchon Hanok Village, Gyeongbokgung Palace, and Changdeokgung Palace, the place was lined with shops, cafes, and restaurants. W.E. is just one of the many cafes in the area that tourists and locals alike can rest after a tiring hike. 

Yes, it says corean - we don't know why too
We discovered this cafe from a YouTube video of Arirang where they reviewed this cafe. The hotteok and red bean fondue looked so yummy that we decided to splurge on this meal. Splurge we did as the food was expensive. The cafe's details were so cute - like this wall design that looks like grass:

... and a see-through flexible (tarp-like material) wall that reflects the plants outside.

Here's their kitchen where they whip up their awesome dishes. Anyway, off to the food.

We ordered the red bean fondue, which costed 14,800 KRW. The fondue set comes with rice cake balls, sweet red bean sauce and healthy dips such as bean powder, maple syrup, grain syrup, and nuts. Heaven! I loved the bean powder but I didn't taste much of the syrups - maybe because the red bean sauce was already sweet. 

Red bean fondue - 14,800 KRW
You should use the stick to pick up the rice cake and dunk it on the red bean sauce. Then dab it on whatever dip you like! Yum!

The red bean sauce was sweet and hot and the rice cake balls were warm. Some of the rice cake balls were a bit cold but we're not complaining as it was so delicious! It was an awesome Korean take on the swiss fondue.

We also ordered the grilled apple hotteok, which costed us 8,500 KRW. Hotteok is a popular Korean street food made of thin batter and filled with brown sugar and nuts, which turn to syrup when fried. We saw a couple of hotteok around Myeongdong but we weren't prepared for the thickness of this one:

Grilled apple hotteok, 8,500 KRW
You can also order frozen berries or banana hotteok.

Upon slicing the hotteok, the syrup immediately oozes out, as well as the nuts inside, including almonds, peanuts, and sunflower seeds. The combination of the chewy dough, the crunch of the nuts/seeds, and the sweetness of the caramelized apple brought us to heaven. Yum!

 The dish justified its price - just look at those nuts coming out of the bread.

Needless to say, we were so full after that meal and it took a while to empty the two dishes. 

For reference, here's the YouTube video of the Arirang show where W.E. cafe was featured:

Never miss a visit to W.E. when you're going to Bukchon Hanok Village! Plus there's WiFi, so what else would you ask for. Here are more details about the cafe (yes, these are all in Korean :))):

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