‘All you do in San Diego is eat,’ I complained to my best friend who is currently living the tai tai lifestyle in sunny California.
‘Look who’s talking,’ she countered while perusing the photos of the meal I had at Libertine Bar and Kitchen last week.
Ehhhhh, okay fine, true… the ‘Epicure’ category in this blog is getting pretty hefty but there are some decent eateries popping up all over Seoul and I have been gone for almost two months so it makes sense that my tummy is catching up with the Seoul restaurant scene.
The latest and soon to be greatest is Libertine Bar and Kitchen, the brainchild of my oenophile friend Sean and some of his buddies. Located a stone’s throw away from the Hamilton Hotel, the location and space are ideal for a classy meal before getting down and dirty in Itaewon (cos you know, we gotta be highbrow/lowbrow like that). With black and white tile floors, ambient lighting and a brick bar with a full shelf of alcoholic goodness, the place has an understated, relaxed vibe reminiscent of your favourites eateries in New York and Sydney (or so I was told by my dining companions).
Libertine had a three day soft opening last week and I arrived as the second official guest (after the gentleman who designed the place). Everything went superbly well save for a few hiccups here and there… growing pains, I understand, but nothing too major that set anything back, especially with Sean running around making sure things went smoothly.
Sean has a penchant for Speyside scotches and Tuscan super reds so we get along pretty well and I knew the drinks would be pretty awesome. A bottle of wine will set you back between W55000-W190,000 (for a Brunello di Montalcino) and there is a whole slew of cocktails available – I suggest the old fashioned.
Now the food… everything about that meal was memorable, from the green bread (crostini with pesto served with a fresh tomato salad), the clam chowder with sundried tomatoes, asparagus with hollandaise sauce and ham crumble and the highlight of the meal which was the duck (which was a little small for my liking – tasting menu or not). I ended up stealing a bite of other friend’s plates because it was so good. I’ve said time and time again that I’m not much of a dessert person but that chocolate pie with BACON (yes bacon!) was so good.
Obviously, there is a reason why I am fat.
Official opening is Saturday May 3rd, 2014 so call them and make a reservation.
Libertine Bar & Kitchen
141-8 Itaewon-dong, Yongsan-gu
T: 82 2 790 9477