Sunday, March 08, 2015

Craves and Sights Seoul Edition: Leah Cafe, Tea Museum, Korean Restaurant Nammoon

When my family and I travel abroad, we usually resort to convenience store food simply because it is cheap. My parents choose to save on food because we spend most of our money on attractions and shopping resulting in budget cut on food. My siblings and I are fine with that because not only do we enjoy attractions and shopping but also because we can't be bothered to think of where and what to eat. We also enjoy eating at the comforts of our own hotel room and we get to eat breakfast buffet style so convenience store food is more than okay. But in my last trip to Seoul, I had to persuade my mom to try out various cafes and restaurants because I want to eat Korean food and because cafes in Seoul are aplenty. Since it is winter and a great season to indulge in sweets/pastries and warm tea/coffee, my mom was sold. We really wanted to try the Hello Kitty cafe this time, but as mentioned in a previous post, both branches were taken down. I don't know if there is still a Hello Kitty cafe somewhere in Seoul and if there is, I will find it on our next visit! For now, here are some that we tried:

Leah Cafe
Location: Insadong
I can't find the exact address of this cafe but you can easily spot this as it is very near the entrance to the main street of Insadong. It is also very near Ssamziegil. We did not really intend to dine in this cafe because I was eyeing one near the highway (name of cafe I forget). But because it was already dark and becoming too cold, my mom and I wanted to warm ourselves up and this is the very first cafe that caught our eyes. It was located at the second floor of a building which I don't know the name, but there is a signage downstairs that says "Leah Cafe" so it is very easy to spot. We were both glad we tried this cafe for so many reasons: 1.) there were only 2 other people the time were there (I hate chain cafes because they are too crowded and does not give you the serenity and calmness you need in a cafe); 2.) the interior is just too cute. Modern and traditional items blend so well together. The other tables have like a "mini museum" because the tables act as a storage of various items like embroidered cloth and pottery so you can look through it while eating and sipping a cup of coffee; and, 3.) delicious pastries. The staff can also speak in English and the menu comes in English making it very tourist friendly. If you are in Insadong, please make sure to check this cafe out.

Tea Museum
Location: beside Changdeokgung
My mom and I discovered this quaint cafe by accident. We were looking for the entrance to the Palace and we suddenly found ourselves to the Bukchon Hanok Village beside the palace and then we saw the sign. Because my mom and I have lately been avid drinkers of tea, we agreed we would go there after the palace tour and see what the museum is all about. We knew there would be a restaurant inside because most museums anywhere in the world actually have a restaurant beside it or inside it. So we decided we would have lunch there as well. Upon entering, we were surprised that it is not really a museum but a cafe. According to the owner, there used to be a museum but they decided to convert it to a cafe. The owner and her niece, who is the resident patissier, are very accommodating and they communicate well in English making it another tourist friendly cafe. I really love the vibe of this cafe but it is quite expensive. The pastries are tea infused and sugar-free but they are so delicious! The tea leaves they sell are also very high quality and sources from the most exotic places in the world. They will give you a very brief background on where they source their tea and also hand you a brochure so you can get to know more about what they serve you. They also have an open kitchen so you can watch the patissier as she works her magic on the cakes. They also sell tea sets that are just too dainty and adorable I want to take them all home (but expensive). This has become one of my favorite places in Seoul. I will sure to be back next time and try out their other teas. They have a huge variety that all smell so good you will want to buy everything.

Korean Restaurant Nammoon
Location: Nami Island
There are so many restaurants in Nami Island serving various international cuisines including Italian and Thai. But since we are in Korea, we want to eat authentic Korean food. We just happened to pass by this restaurant as we were looking for a place to eat. We were thinking of going to a cafe again but because it was too damn cold in Nami Island, my mom and I wanted to eat something substantial and spicy. So we ended up coming here. This is by far the most affordable and most fulfilling lunch we had in our entire trip. Beef is known to be very expensive in Korea but it was affordable in this restaurant. The Bulgogi stew and spicy beef stew are only 10,000.00 Won each. In Seoul this would have cost 25,000.00 Won each. And the great thing about this restaurant is that they didn't just put a few slices of beef - there were loads of beef slices! It was so delicious that my mom and I finished everything in just a few minutes. If it were a regular day, we would just share one pot because these are huge pots anyway and I eat more rice than meat. The staff also communicate well in English probably because Nami Island receives a high volume of foreigners so speaking in English is a necessary skill. I highly recommend this restaurant!

This concludes my winter vacation in Seoul. Now it really feels like my vacation has ended and all the memories from this vacation still remains vivid. I can't wait 'til I get back! Anyway, hope you enjoyed as I took you on a journey to winter in Seoul. I do have vacations already planned throughout the year and I hope to add more - including a trip again to Seoul. 

Have a lovely week ahead.


  1. I share the same opinion . The stripes look great with any outfit and turn out to be a complement leaving the look with more personality . :D

    InstagramFacebook Oficial PageMiguel Gouveia / Blog Pieces Of Me :D

  2. The place looks wonderful! Nice photos, too!

  3. I'm following you now on gfc.Hope you will follow me back!

  4. All of that food looks really yummy! Thanks for sharing these pics :)

    xo Azu

  5. The place looks amazing!Followed you on GFC

    xoxo The Lifer Blog

  6. Everything looks great here! ;A; I love the photos you took~
    ~Kiyomi from kokorosasa

  7. Love those cute coffee shops! Korean food never disappoints!

    xoxo, Christina

    Stray Birds and Lavender

    1. There are so many cute cafes all over Korea and yes, Korean food is always so good.


  9. Beautiful place.
    Have a lovely week :)

  10. Aw. it is such a beautiful place. I would love to visit that soon :)

    1. Beautiful indeed. Hope you get to visit soon.