Nearby Eulji-ro Bangsan Marketplace, there is a small restaurant next to U.S Army Corp of Engineers FED’s exit 2.  Won Bossam was written on a standing signboard, but this store is also called Jang Soo Bossam. The entrance’s style looked  in the 70s. They have plenty of menus; Baekban (meal with a bowl of rice, soup, and side dishes), Naengmyeon (Korean cold noodles), Bossam (boiled pork eaten with a salty sauce and wrapped in greens) with rice, and kimchi stew. This place became famous through the Internet.

Food service industry in Korea is influenced by franchise. From chicken to coffee, franchise stores have lots of food industry, which increases fierce competition. Bossam franchises are no exception. Among them this 'Won' Bossam is known for its numerous stores. There is a rumor that the owner of Jang Soo Bossam is related to Won Bossam's franchise, but no one knows exactly.

One thing that is certain is that both restaurants have delicious food. There are four tables in the hall and you can also seat on the second floor. Even though it was not dinner time, a half of the tables were booked with middle-aged gentlemen who were drinking.

I ordered 'one bossam package' and the owner said bluntly, "sure, you should order one. No reason to order two bossam." if I had not known the rumor that the owner is unkind, I would have leave. But truth is she is not that kind of person. It is just her way influenced by years of experience; people would not leave because of her blunt words and they would not think she is a bad person. She is confident of her food. Anyways, she served savory kimchi with oyster. Expectably, it was well-ripened and very delicious. 

Oyster is very expensive in these days. So maybe this kimchi full with oysters is more pricey than main dish, bossam. In general, most restaurants have Geotjeori (fresh vegetable salad dressed with garlic and chili powder Kimchi). Some people like well-ripened kimchi but others don't like its unique smell. It is hard to store kimchi inside of the restaurant and then wait until they ripe. That's why most restaurants don't have savory when they serve kimchi. But this store was different. They were well-ripened and it was just the way Koreans like. 

Bean sprouts soup goes well with bossam. Also, salted shrimp is a perfect partner with pork. Finally, bossam was served. But I was really disappointed by its tiny size. I was thinking about posting this place as a failure in finding famous restaurants.  I looked the owner. She was smiling.

But my thought was changed immediately. I was wired into eating bossam and in ten minutes, ate all. Before I eat them, I was pretty sure that the portion of food was too small, but I was really full. Unlike bossam in franchise which spread the meat widely on the dish, this bossam was piled up. Soft and chewy boiled pork with oyster-kimchi was literally melt away in the mouth. As I said, the portion of the food was very different from what it looked like. It was really large in quantity. 

One of my companies ordered a bowl of rice. It was just a bowl, but the owner set five more side dishes. Her strategy was rare in this barren world. She kept taking care of customers and giving more side dishes and bowl of rice. She asked "you want more?" to the last.Unlike its shabby exterior, it does have a reason for its popularity. Even though they are small and only have a few tables, it gave an impression of big fancy restaurant. I feel like finding some cultural properties in Seoul.

Location : Dong Ho-ro 378-2 (Bangsan-dong 84-1), Jung-gu, Seoul . Tel : 82-2-2272-2971 

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서울특별시 중구 을지로동 | Jang Soo Bossam
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