With its bright yellow facade, Cafe Insadong was an immediate attention drawer for those walking past the shop at Chinatown; one victim was obviously me although its name also reminded me of the time i visited the cultural district in South Korea.
Featuring patbingsu, injeolmi toast and a retail division (no surprise for the latter), I made a mental note to check it out in the near future as i was rushing for time that day.
It didn't take me long to saw a promotional deal for the cafe at deals.com and frankly, compared to the prices i am paying at cafes elsewhere, i thought i should grab the offer without any delay!
Business wasn't roaring on the Wednesday evening although i am not complaining as this means i can shoot pictures comfortably without any fear of offending diners. p.s. i have sought separate permission from the counter.
Paintings on the wall are for sale! I thought this was a fantastic arrangement; on one hand, the boring walls would be injected with unique artwork and on the other hand, an artiste can display his/her works with potential earnings.
I was captivated by the Feng Shui fishes that cost S$488 a set!
Food beckoned as i was famished! Aside from the common cakes and ice cream, you may also relax by having a bottle of the Korean alcoholic beverage.
A scoop of ice cream would be part of our Patbingsu (basically, it is flavoured shaved ice) but our main aim was to partake on the set for two persons which included 2 mains (rice / toast), 2 drinks and 1 patbingsu.
Jujube Honey Tea
This was as good as those concentrates you can get from Korean-themed supermarket albeit at a much cheaper price since i can make many cups. The other difference is that i don't have such a nice looking spoon at home.
Yuzu Honey Tea
Likewise for this, you can get the same concentrate and make it yourself; the iced form cost S$0.50 more in the cafe! As a drink, it was refreshing and definitely welcome on a hot and stuffy day!
Bulgogi Beef Rice
Often, i lamented about the vast differences in the menu and what was eventually presented on the table. Over at Cafe Insadong, they appeared exactly the same!
The neat layering of the ingredients resulted in an amalgamation of spiciness, sweetness, sourness ad savoriness that was simple, balanced yet extremely palatable! It looked suspiciously like canned pet food though....
I cleaned it up in no time with not a speckle of rice grain to be seen!
Bulgogi Chicken Rice
Pretty nice too. I admitted the ingredients were honestly nothing to scream about as you could likely be able to prepare them yourself. However, for a person who barely knows how to fry an egg, it was a godsend!
Sweet Potato Patbingsu
It's interesting to note that i didn't have any patbingsu when i was in South Korea! I did attempt to try it but either the weather was too cold or that it was sold out!
We opted for the "jelly crush" ice cream instead of vanilla which required another top up of S$0.50. Visually, i could not wait to dig into the slabs of purplish sweet potatoes topped with almond flakes and mochis stuffed with bean pastes!
The ice was finely shaved and generally flavoured by the sweet potatoes and ice creams. It could not be compared to our local desserts like ice kacang which was much sweeter even though there was still a certain 'healthier' appeal to it.
Injeolmi Honey Butter Toast
I was still hungry and decided a toast would fill up the remaining gaps in the stomach. Looking just like normal toast, i was on the verge on smacking myself for S$6.80 for two slices of normal looking bread.
This is when the word "injeolmi" comes into play; injeolmi actually means Korean rice cake and it was placed in between the bread as filling and then toasted!
Sticky, sweet, buttery, nutty (contributed by the almond flakes) and toasted to a nice crisp, it was an apt finale to the comfortable meal we had!
279 South Bridge Road
[Opposite Chinatown Food Street]
Mondays to Thursdays - 12pm to 9.30pm
Fridays to Saturdays - 12pm to 11.30pm
Sundays - 12pm to 6pm
As appended above!
I am only appending the price for as i got a deals.com voucher for the drinks, bingsu and the two mains. Injeolmi Honey Butter Toast - S$6.80.