The Best Restaurants in Seoul
Seoul is a world-class city filled with world-class restaurants. When visiting Seoul for business, hit up these establishments, which showcase both traditional Korean foods and Korean takes on meals from around the world.
1. Jyoti Restaurant Chungmuro Myeongdong
Jyoti Restaurant is a chain of Indian eating establishments in the Seoul area, and all locations consistently make lists of Seoul's best restaurants. It's a great place to go if you're craving traditional Indian or Nepali food. The restaurant serves both vegetarian and non-vegetarian cuisine and is renowned for its delicious food and excellent service. Plus, the cheerful Bollywood background music delights many reviewers.
2. JW's Grill
JW's Grill at the JW Marriott in Seoul is a standout restaurant, perfect for your business meeting in Seoul. Call ahead if you're bringing a crowd; the restaurant's private area seats 48. The grill serves daily business lunches, a Sunday brunch and dinners. JW's specializes in juicy steak, fresh salads, seafood and a high-end dessert menu.
3. Tavolo 24
Tavolo 24 is another restaurant located at the JW Marriott. This joint is more casual than JW's Grill and specializes in both Western and Asian food -- including a top-notch Korean buffet -- and excellent service. Tavolo 24 serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, but reviewers are consistently most excited about the establishment's breakfast and brunch options. It's a perfect place to eat and recharge the morning after your big client meeting in Seoul.
4. Vatos Urban Tacos
Vatos Urban Tacos is one of Seoul's best-known Mexican chains, and it prides itself on quality. Portions here are small, but reviewers agree: The tastes are amazing. Look for Korean riffs on Mexican classics, such as kimchi fries, and enjoy the establishment's abundant mixed drink menu. The establishment draws a range of tourists and locals eager to experience the restaurant's friendly, relaxed atmosphere. It's the perfect place to go when visiting Seoul for business; have a drink or two and unwind.
5. Taj - Taste of India
Taj is a high-end Indian restaurant located in the fashionable Myeongdong district. Visitors rave about the authenticity of the food here, as well as its rich, varied flavor palate, which draws from across India. The menu is loaded with both vegetarian and non-vegetarian options, and the service and high-class ambiance are excellent. The staff speaks both English and Hindi, and are happy to accommodate your needs.
Ryunique (sometimes styled as Lyunikkeu) is located in Seoul's rapidly expanding, high-end Gangnam district. Ryunique really lives up to its name: Its cuisine is a fusion of traditional Korean and Japanese fare with French cooking techniques. The result is food that's unusual in both flavors and presentation but always exceptional. The service and atmosphere are both top-notch. If you're looking for somewhere memorable to take a client, this is it.
Mingles is a restaurant so unusual and so delightful that it has made a few lists of the best restaurants not just in the country, but in the world. If you're an American with experience with Asian fusion cuisine, you have a leg up: Mingles serves Asian fusion from the other direction, making Korean food with an American twist. The restaurant's atmosphere is casual but still chic and in line with the rest of the busy Cheongdam-Dong district. If you're interested in experiencing this place, book a table well in advance: Mingles is in high demand.
8. Braai Republic
Here's something off-beat: a South African restaurant in Seoul. Braai Republic serves big helpings of South African favorites like bangers and mash, meat pie and pork chops. The staff is famously friendly and helpful and make Braai Republic a great place to go for a hearty, filling meal that's sure to rejuvenate you. It's no wonder Braai Republic has become one of the biggest culinary draws for tourists exploring the Itaewon district's revival.
9. Gusto Taco
Gusto Taco serves traditional Mexican and Latin American cuisine in a contemporary, casual atmosphere. It's a little off the beaten path, in the Itaewon district, but reviewers consistently say it offers some of the best tacos they've ever had anywhere in the world. The staff is friendly, menus are bilingual, and the portions are ample for what you pay.
Are you ready for your Seoul bleisure trip? If you're still ironing out your itinerary, check out VisitSeoul on Facebook for a list of excellent restaurants and other attractions in the city.
Where do you like to eat when traveling on business in Seoul? Share in the comments below.