On 13 October 2022, the MICHELIN Guide Seoul 2023 was published. Many chefs and restaurants participated in the official publication event and gala dinner, which held in-person for the first time in three years since COVID-19. And with everybody's joyful disposition, it became a more meaningful event and party for the Seoul gourmet scene.
This year, in particular, there were several changes, including the new special award, the Sommelier Award, which gathered more attention. Five new restaurants entered the list with one MICHELIN Star. Restaurants spanning various cuisines, from Korean to Western, and even styles such as Teppanyaki, were added to the list. The MICHELIN Guide Seoul 2023 captures the diverse aspects of Seoul more vividly. Today, we introduce the five new one-MICHELIN-Starred restaurants and find out what wowed our MICHELIN Guide inspectors.
KANG MINCHUL Restaurant
B1F, 18 Dosan-daero 68-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
Chef Kang Min-chul has been greatly inspired by time spent with master chefs, instilling in him a pride and passion for cuisine and culinary philosophy. It's also helped him find his own direction and the fare at this namesake restaurant genuinely reflects his attitude toward gastronomy. The menu comprises dishes offering a kaleidoscope of flavours, while highlighting the diversity of refined French cuisine. The restaurant’s small space makes reservations a challenge, but once you secure a table, prepare to be rewarded with an unforgettable dining experience.
2F Center field EAST E205, 231 Teheran-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul,
Chef Allen Suh has opened a restaurant named after his name. The chef and his veteran culinary team create dishes, based on seasonal ingredients, that illustrate the beauty of Korea’s four seasons. His mastery in utilising a wide variety of tableware for the art of plating adds visual delight to the restaurant’s delicate flavours. In particular, diverse amuse-bouches served on a wooden tray, such as a small pie topped with caviar and smoked sturgeon, beetroot hardened with gelatin, and flavourful horse mackerel aged with kelp, are amongst the gastronomic wonders that change seasonally. Ice cream made with 24 month-aged Parmigiano-Reggiano, blue cheese puree, and other scrumptious dishes are dinner-only specialties. Chef Suh’s new culinary venue is roomier than his previous one, has a wine bar, and offers a pasta menu. Be sure to check it out!
B1F, 35 Sinheung-ro 26-gil, Yongsan-gu, Seoul,
Located in a quaint part of Seoul, this operation is Chef Yun Dae-hyun’s bold experiment in stylish fine dining. Here, the diverse culinary traditions and ingredients one may encounter in modern-day Korea converge with the familiar tastes found in everyday life to form unique fusion creations. Among the many connotations of the establishment’s name is the chef’s desire to serve soul-filled food, and this is palpable in every dish. Along with his wife, Chef Kim Hee-eun, this husband-and-wife duo have partitioned their establishment into several distinct sections, creating impeccable dining spaces for disparate cuisines.
4F, 6 Dosan-daero 37-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
Visit Solbam to enjoy modern cuisine that offers an outstanding balance of tastes, aromas and flavours. Here, Chef Eom Tae-jun’s wide range of culinary experience and expertise meet Korean elements. His study of local ingredients (guided by his respect for nature and Korea’s four seasons) and his knowledge of Korean cooking techniques culminate in an uncanny synergy that gives rise to the restaurant’s unique modern dishes. With each course, the chef’s passion and exemplary effort delivers singularly rewarding gastronomic experience to guests.
2F Cheongdam square B side, 420 Dosan-daero, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
a restaurant where cooking at precise temperatures meets visual delight, resulting in ultimate culinary pleasure. Using Korean, Japanese, and Western cooking techniques, the chef creates a multitude of menu items. Since every section of the counter has its own griddle, each diner can enjoy their meal at their own tempo. From the chef’s pre-dining introduction of ingredients to his cooking unfolding right in front of you, each step of the culinary process at Ilpan makes your gastronomic journey that much more adventurous.