It is hot summer and we lose appetite. I’ve been searching for summer specialty in here and found that the lobster is in season. The lobster season in Korea is from May through August. I didn’t want to lose the chance so decided to go to Noryangjin fish market with friends. Norayngjin fish market is the biggest fish market in Seoul and it has been recently renovated.
It was Sunday, but there weren’t too many people. Since it has been a long time for me to go there, I wanted to look around the renovated market and check the prices as well.
After a few visits to some stores, I realized that the prices of merchants are mostly the same. (KRW 35,000 / kg (USD 30.00) for lobsters and KRW 20,000 / kg (USD 17.00) for prawns)
Someone told me that it is better not to negotiate the price, but to ask for additional free seafood, so I decided to buy where the best measure is offered.
We were 3 people and didn’t know what size to buy. all merchants gave us different advice. one of them even told us that “If you are 3, you want to eat 5 kg lobster.”
We wanted to eat a lobster, prawns, and a few abalones, so we bought a 2.5 kg lobster and 1 kg prawns and asked for “free give a way seafood”. They agreed to give us 3 abalones, 3 turban shells, 3 sea urchins, and a few seashells.
The picture above is a 5 kg lobster. It is almost the size of the upper body of the lady and a claw can cover her face. It was really fresh and lively.
The restaurants provide cooking services and dining areas.
They charge KRW 3,000 (USD 2.60) per person for a table, utensils, and simple sauces, such as soy sauce, wasabi, and bean paste sauce. They also provide lettuce, garlic, and chilly peppers.
And there will be additional cooking charges depends on how you would like to have the food cooked.
The menu above is about the cooking services they offer. They make it sashimi, steamed, pan fried, etc.
We wanted to have it in different ways, so ordered as below.
* lobster tail – sashimi and steamed
* lobster body – steamed and grilled
* prawns – grilled on salt
* abalones – 1 sashimi, 1 grilled, and 1 steamed
* sea urchins – sashimi
* turban shells – steamed
If you order different ways, there will be additional charges for each way.
We ordered a bottle of rice wine, a soft drink, and a fried rice as well.
The restaurant charged us slightly more then KRW 70,000.
Including the seafood price we paid in the market (KRW 100,000), to total price became KRW 170,000 (USD 150.00)
The seafood price sounds good, but the restaurant service is a little expensive that we thought.
So here comes the lobster tail sashimi. It was my first time to have a lobster sashimi. It is sweet and surprisingly a little fruity. Normally fish sashimi is chewy, but the lobster tail is softer the fish and you can also have the filling of cutting soft fiber. It was a delicious and new experience. You need a rice wine at this moment.
And here are the abalone and sea urchin sashimis with full of sea flavor.
One more shot of rice wine. Kya~~ (that’s the sound Koreans make after a shot of liquor)
My Canadian friend told me that a sea urchin smells like a sewer for westerners, so whenever his Canadian friends visits Korea, he takes them to sushi restaurants and have them eat sea urchins for fun. (Is that true? a sewer?)
Now we have steamed shells. they go well with Chojang (spicy and sour chilly sauce).
And we have grilled prawns and abalones. Red prawns were savorier than white ones.
After we finished the tail sashimi, they took the tail and steamed and brought it back.
It looked like a new steamed tail and had a lot of meat.
And here are halves of the body, half steamed and half grilled. It would have been a lot better if they put more butter in it. steamed one was good, but I liked the grilled one much more.
We didn’t expect a lot about the fried rice, but it was super delicious. It was a fried the rice with sesame oil, seaweed, and fish eggs and I liked it better than the steamed part of the lobster.
After the meal, all 3 of us were fully stuffed. 2.5 kg was good enough for 2 guys and 1 girl.
If you go to a sashimi restaurant in Korea, they provide many different kinds of side dishes, but it is either more expensive or smaller size main dish.
If you want to enjoy seafood for a good price, the fish market can be a good answer.
Big John’s Rating:
Taste of food: 4/5
Restaurant Ambiance: 3/5
Noryangjin Fish Market
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