Let’s talk about my dining experience at the Jagalchi fish market. I’ve heard so many positive things about this place. People say that the fish is high-quality and super fresh and that the price is reasonable compared to Seoul. The praise just goes on and on..But when we arrived at Jagalchi market, it was totally chaotic. Some of the restaurants were so desperate for costumers that they started to pull us in different directions which made us feel slightly uncomfortable. But when we got deeper into the building, some restaurants were so busy they just ignored their costumers. After walking back and forth a thousand times, we finally found a restaurant that we were comfortable with. They had an English menu and the waitress did understand some basic English. It was, however, easier just to point at the items and nod.
The seafood was incredibly fresh. So fresh me and L almost didn’t have the heart to eat it. We ordered grilled shrimp, seafood soup, and grilled eel. When I ordered the eel, I somehow imagined it was going to be cooked Japanese style where the eel is perfectly grilled over charcoal and served with this delicious barbecue sauce on. But Korean style is entirely different. The eel was so fresh, we could see it still moving around when the heat was turned on. It was terrifying sight to behold. The eel looked like it was in so much pain which totally killed our appetite. We didn’t want to waste the food, so we tried to eat as much as possible. The soup tasted and smelled like the sea and little else. I don’t know how else to describe it. I felt like it lacked some seasoning. The shrimp was overcooked and a little bit dry. The eel was very spicy and they hadn’t cleaned it thoroughly so we could still see some of entrails and a lot of bones. I tried to chew some eel meat and then spit out the bones, but in the end I just swallowed everything..because I’m an amateur.
When the bill came, it was pricier then what we expected. The meal wasn’t worth the price and the whole thing felt a little bit like a scam. But I’ve heard that it’s recommended to bring a Korean friend to these kinds of places, because then someone can bargain for you and choose from the “secret” items that aren’t included in the English menu.
Would I recommend this place?
Yes and no. Yes, because you need to see the awesome fish selection they have there. You will discover some sea creatures you didn’t even know existed and probably won’t see at an aquarium. No, because you shouldn’t eat a meal there. But if you still wanna try, try to bring a local friend so he/she can bargain for you because the food we got was not that impressive considering the high price.