Bibimbap is one of the most popular South Korean foods. A bowl of rice topped with vegetables and often egg and slices of meat, it may seem like a simple dish, but it’s packed full of flavour and is a favourite of both locals and travellers alike. You can find hundreds of vendors offering both cold and warm bibimbap in Seoul, but these are the ones you should head for first.
Jeonju-style bibimbap is served at this restaurant in the busy fashion district of Myeongdong, as well as a vast selection of pancakes, bulgogi (Korean barbecue beef) and Jeonju-style grilled pork. Booking is only available for groups of four diners or more, so although this restaurant has seating for 100 it can get very busy at popular times.
Gogung, 27 Myeongdong 8na-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul 04537, +82 (0)2 776 3211
Jeonju Yu Bibimbap
The name of this eatery near City Hall and Deoksugung Palace translates as Grandma Yu’s bibimbap, and it has been serving traditional dishes for over 40 years. It has garnered a loyal following of locals who enjoy the restaurant’s retro feel. Samgyupsal (grilled pork belly) is also on the menu.
Jeonju Yu Bibimbap, 27-2 Sejong-daero 14-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul 04526
Ondal serves some of the best bibimbap in the city. The restaurant is on the second floor of the luxury Walkerhill hotel, where you can enjoy great views of the Han river while you sample this dish and more; the kimchi (fermented vegetables) and gujeolpan (nine-dish tasting platter) are also highly recommended.
Ondal, Walkerhill, 177 Walkerhill-ro, Gwangjin-gu, Seoul 04963, +82 (0)2 450 4518
Open round the clock, this simple 24-hour eatery offers private dining rooms and valet parking, making it quite possibly the most convenient restaurant in all of Seoul. The food is unfussy but packed full of flavour, just as you would expect from traditional Korean bibimbap.
Saebyukjib, 6 Dosan-daero 101-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul 06013