A space teeming with greenness always draws in interest; if such a space were a restaurant, indeed people would step right in. When chefs personally grow herbs in the garden and display plants in the interior of the restaurant, it is safe to presume that the dishes the restaurant serves are fresh and healthy.
Near Gyeongbokgung Station is a residential area located slightly away from the main street. Gallina Daisy is an Italian restaurant that gives an impression of an old western-style house in which a sophisticated lady fond of flowers may reside. Past the main entrance and a well-organized garden with diverse herbs, flowers, and trees, visitors can see the cozy interior of restaurant at a glance. Although the restaurant exterior is reminiscent of peaceful residential homes in Seochon, the interior is tidy and sophisticated; in fact, wallpaper covers one side of the wall while glass makes up another side, together creating a comfy environment. Gallina Daisy is a traditional Italian restaurant founded by Chef Daisy who has worked as a sous-chef for nine years under Santino Sortino, one of the most celebrated chefs in the Italian food industry. Daisy aims to produce no fuss, yet simple and direct flavors with carefully selected organic ingredients; she also abides by strict in-house rules of handcrafting wholesome meals and seasonings. Vegetables, in particular, are air transported from plantations that harvest vegetables in season; Daisy, who has more than a decade of experience as a chef, personally evaluated and selected optimal farms in search of freshly picked vegetables all over the country. However, herbs like mint and rosemary are grown in the restaurant garden. In addition, Daisy is highly passionate and confident, preparing her own sausages, stocks, and cheese. With noodle dough kneaded using squid ink, scampi pasta is harmoniously seasoned with bisque sauce and served with snapping shrimps freshly caught in Jeju Island. Gallina salad, another feature dish at Gallina Daisy, is a mix of organic quinoa, asparagus, beets seasoned with red wine, and sprinkled almonds in lemon zest dressing. Weight and health conscious consumers seeking delicious and full flavored food favorably respond to Gallina Daisy’s feature dishes, Scampi pasta and Gallina salad. The desserts and juice served at Gallina Daisy do not have added sugar; for example, organic apple juice is freshly extracted from apples that arrive directly from farms and hence the continued patronage of the restaurant.
Address: 13th Street 1-4, Jahamun-ro, Jongro-Ku, Seoul
It’s like entering the dream come true dining room. The sensible chef’s well-balanced space laid out effortlessly with contemporary furniture and diverse plants; this chef ironically is a young man by the name of Tony Yoo from Kitchen Flos. Viewing Korean food as soul food, Yoo prepares each dish using fresh seasonal ingredients and marinates with traditionally preserved soy sauce. His personal philosophy is to serve honest, safe foods; to execute his philosophy, he has learned to prepare Buddhist cuisine for an entire year directly from Buddhist monks. Tony Yoo desired to prepare foods reminiscent of one’s mother’s home-cooked meal, and has come to the understanding that the basis for such a meal is fresh ingredients. Therefore, he begins each day at a grocery store to purchase fresh ingredients. Kitchen Flos may have a slightly different menu depending on the availability of fresh produce, but the food continues to remain within the boundaries of Korean cuisine. Chimchae Salad, the oldest and representative dish at Kitchen Flos, is marinated in a dressing of sweet Solomon’s seal, oriental melons, kohlrabi, papayas, and melons delivered via air transport from the eight provinces of Korea. Before red peppers were introduced to Korea, chimchae was reinterpreted as kimchi and favored by all people regardless of age and nationality. According to Tony Yoo, Kitchen Flos is, in fact, a popular alley for business meetings with overseas clients. The key to capturing the gustatory desires of foreign gourmands is through a superior dining experience with a special selection of wines and a luxurious Korean course meal. Another dish that the chef highly recommends is the slightly blanched yam seeds, a delectable appetizer. The chef first tried traditional yams on his journey to Andong and immensely enjoyed the taste; he decided to steam the yam seeds for their nutritional composition and superb taste. In addition to the aforementioned dishes, acacia flowers, bamboo shoot, and pumpkin flowers are fried using fresh oil to maintain the green and fresh flavor of vegetables. Croakers caught in Sinhan are dried in sea breeze, giving their crisp and chewy texture; after steaming the dried croakers, they can be enjoyed with a baguette and potato spread. Patrons can experience the unique and healthy recipes that Tony Yoo has personally created at Kitchen Flos.
Address: 80th Street 35 2F, Apkujung-ro, Kangnam-Ku, Seoul
Cold bean-soup noodles
Chimchae (Kimchee) Salad
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