Sometime ago, I used to work in the glitzy and trendy land of, Cheongdam-dong. Lunch with my
team was usually at 10,000 won or less Korean places. But on a particularly sunny day, we’d stand
a little taller and stride in to one of the fancier places in the area and pretend we didn’t have to go
back to work.
We would walk past rows of designer shops and see the latest displays of silk and leather
creations at Hermès to head towards Doosan-park for its many restaurant options.
My friend is a typical annoying foodie. I consider unfollowing her on instagram every night. She
booked me for my lunch hour one weekday to try a nearby restaurant called ‘Melting Shop.’ I hadn’t
heard of the place but I knew better than to question her superiority. She's always taken me to the
We walked towards the trendy restaurant, taken aback by its beautiful exterior and once we stepped
inside the 1930s retro dining space, we were greeted with the welcoming smells of comfort
Everyone looked so relaxed lounging here on this carefree spring day. But probably because these
dressed up people didn't have jobs to get back to, we're in Cheongdam-dong, after all.
I'm just jealous.
The frazzled hostess asked for our reservation name and with her best 'I'm sorry' face, told us
the reservations had all been pushed back. We ate somewhere else, the food was bad, and my
friend went back home. I went back to work.
We tried again a few days later. And this time, I left a little earlier just in case. This time, we got in
and our lunch was perfect.
The menu consists of a handful of perfected specialties and it’s a crowd pleaser every time as
each of their dishes is impressively creative. Don't expect the usual renditions of classic dishes.
Their rigatoni bake, for example, is baked with the pasta standing upright. Spicy vodka sauce with
sausage is then poured over and into the tubes of each rigatoni pasta. Once you grab some off
they'll advise you to roll it against the cheese crust on the pan surrounding the whole thing. It's
Their wasabi soft shell crab popover with oak salad isn’t cheap at 27,200 won but it’s the star
menu item here and it's a whole crab. I'm usually not the biggest fan of wasabi but this sauce is a
dream. You won’t experience a creamy wasabi sauce like it. I looked deeper into the sauce and
found, to my surprise, tiny fish eggs. That’s attention to detail. I recommend you couple this one
with a nice cold beer.
The Caprese pasta is another favorite, if you're a pesto fan like me. The ricotta cheese subtly boots
flavor and I think they also use lemon, because each bite has a slight citrus surprise.
The pulled pork melt with spicy aoli and tomato jam is another carb-heavy one that matches my
fat, part-american taste. This dish is also an excuse to eat aioli sauce, because how can you get
enough of that stuff. Also this juicy melt is another good excuse to drink beer.
I experienced food comas I had forgotten what felt like.
With the upscale qualities of this place, (they even have stools for your purse ladies) and with the
prices, it’s a fitting place for birthdays and occasions. You must reserve, and I recommend asking
for a seat on their 2nd floor as you’ll get a tranquil view of Doosan park.
Since then, I’ve brought all my favorite people to Melting Shop. My dad is a typically Korean man and
gets anxiety if he must eat at a place that doesn't have kimchi. I’ve seen a smile turn deathly cold,
reading menus at ‘western’ places I’ve dragged him to. Once in a while, he’ll go away for business
and we have a loving tradition to eat somewhere nice before he leaves.
It amused me that on his last night in Seoul, he started putting together an outfit. He turned to me
and in his deep serious voice, he grumbled in Korean "let's go to melting shop again."
(I laugh because it's quite a girly restaurant).
Address : 55, Apgujeong-ro 46-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Korea
Melting Shop, opened in October 2014 by the owners of Tasting Room. The restaurant specializes in their homemade ricotta and classic American dishes with a Korean twist. Those with a sweet tooth flock > READ MORE
Melting Shop, opened in October 2014 by the owners of Tasting Room. The restaurant specializes in their homemade ricotta and classic American dishes with a Korean twist. Those with a sweet tooth flock here for their unique desserts. > Less more
Opening Hours: 11:00 - 24:00
(Last orders for food: 9:30pm)
Tel: 02 544 4256
647-19 Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea