Fish and chips, to me, are the ultimate low brow, bad decision food. I have had plenty of greasy morsels under fluorescent lights, sporting a little black dress, squirming in my too high heels with my eyeliner creating
smokey panda eyes after a late night out. Fish and chips are not fancy. The best of the best is deep fried on the spot, wrapped in newspaper, dashed with salt and vinegar and devoured with your hands before stumbling back home.
So let’s say I was a little surprised when Battered Sole popped up in Seoul. I haven’t been to the original Shinchon location, which I hear is a little more casual but the Battered Sole Itaewon location is pretty posh. The interior is warm and inviting with low, soft lighting, the menu is beautiful too in terms of design and set up. It would definitely be a place I would recommend for a first date even.
One downside about this type of food getting fancy are the portions. My friends and I ordered the fish & chips (W14,000) but I mean look at that measly little piece of fish on the wooden board… it’s teeny tiny and I was definitely not a happy camper about that. Unlike your average fish and chips though, it cuts down on the salt and grease and is quite the elegant bite (maybe two bites).
Most of the duck board (W18,000) was fairly average save for the spicy duck wings – now that was a star with the perfect balance of flavours combining with the lean-ish meat of the duck wing but the croquette type thing and the other thing that is so unmemorable I didn’t even bother to memorize what it was; I would pass up completely. The texture was strange and it was quite bland overall.
I would definitely go back for the duck breast (W14,000) though and switch out the mash for chips if that’s even a possibility. Mashed potatoes should be light and fluffy with heaps of butter but Battered Sole’s version was quite dense and came out on the cold side. I suppose the duck redeemed the rest of the meal though and as I love places that add full peppercorns to the dish, I was very pleased with the pink variety dotting the dish.
Overall, a far cry from the chip shops back in the UK but solid food and apparently they also have an area on the roof that comes with real grass… Perfect for a little picnic at the weekend with good friends. One last pro tip? Skip out on the red wine and go for the beer. The wine selection definitely needs some work and maybe wear flats because the stairs up to the restaurant are quite steep.
9-4 Itaewon-ro 19-gil, Yongsan-gu
T: +82 2 749 6867