epicure · musings · romance · seoul life

Solo Seoul

Several years ago when I was living in New York, I promised that during my stay there I would give every guy who had the courage to ask me out, a chance. This meant brunches and lunches, happy hours and hole in the walls, street food and fancy dinners and impromptu walks exploring the wonderful city and seeing it through the eyes of the men I dated. I met some very interesting guys along the way and to this day I will always have a story to tell about my days in New York. 

Organic dating just doesn’t happen in Asia though and most of the time you will see the eyes of a friend or colleague lighting up as they declare that they have the perfect match for you. Blind dates are orchestrated affairs, with carefully coordinated questions and perfectly polished answers that put you in the best light, much like a job interview. A guy’s “spec” or his resume of birthright, family connections and future prospects are laid on the table juxtaposed with the girl’s level of beauty and charm.

A few months ago, after some back and forth, I went on a sogaeting (blind date) with a friend of a colleague who chose a fancy Italian restaurant in the posh Cheongdam district in Seoul. It went as expected but I was surprised at how many other first time couples sat at the tables, sipping on a glass of wine and picking at the cube steak and pasta. It wasn’t my intention of eavesdrop but I couldn’t help but internally roll my eyes at the text book Q&A session going on at the tables left and right of me.

After dinner, we went for a quick coffee before my date dropped me off and politely asked if he could call me again sometime (100% call back rate baby! lol).  But as I walked back to my apartment, I couldn’t help but feel exhausted by the whole ordeal. Sometimes you click, other times you don’t and at the end of the day there are things that can’t be forced. At the very least you have some delicious food and learn a little more about yourself, even if it means waiting a little longer for the right one to come along.

That being said, I recommend the seafood rose calzone (W26,400) at Aligote. I know I enjoyed it immensely.

37-12 Cheongdam-dong, Gangnam-gu
Seoul, Korea
T: +82 2 514 9973


2 thoughts on “Solo Seoul

  1. Hi! Just stumbled across your blog and I think I’m gonna stick around 🙂

    After 4 months in Seoul, I too have come to realized this truth you speak of about how approaching someone or having a natural connection are alien concepts around here. Although I haven’t gone on a songaeting, yet, I do have been interviewed about my ideal type by my Korean friends and I can tell they are mentally going through their list of possible candidates to see if they can find a match to set me up with. I’m totally dreading the moment they find one lol

    Another thing that I’ve experience a lot is someone’s friends telling me he likes me or finds me attractive but the guy in question won’t even come to say hello or introduce himself. I just don’t see the point of letting me know if he is not planning in ever exchange a word with me. Is this a Korean thing too or just my luck? O_o

    1. Thanks for visiting! I think most Korean men find it hard to approach women unless it’s in an organized setting. You’ll rarely see a guy chat you up at a bar or a coffee shop and if they do it’s not because they want to date you. I guess sometimes we girls have to make a move to get what we want!

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