Saturday, 20 September 2014

이화 | Ewha

Morgan and Nick climbing the steps of Ewha Womans University
I'll say this first, confusingly the 'E' in 'Ewha' is pronounced "ee!" rather than "eh." which is what I'd been going around saying until we got there and I read the hangeul. Oops. Someone please introduce a standardised romanisation system, please.

There are at least 2 things that I learnt on this trip.
1: you can visit universities, even if you aren't a student.
2: modern university buildings can actually be really pretty.

Apparently a lot of people visit the university grounds because of its beautiful gardens and dramatic architecture. Erin also mentioned some people get their wedding photos done here, which to me is unheard of. But I can see why! It's a lovely place, and surprisingly quiet.

I did some reading about Ewha Womans University before I went, and I really like the sound of it. It's currently the world's largest female educational institute and one of the most prestigious universities in South Korea (thank you Wikipedia). Its alumni include company Presidents and Vice-Presidents, First Ladies, Prime Ministers, CEOs, athletes, doctors, lawyers and judges. It's just constantly churning out a long list of really impressive women.

I also like the fact that they use "womans" rather than "women's" because apparently this is to respect each individual, rather than a collective lumped together by gender. It's also quite old, founded in 1886, so they've been doing great things even throughout the wars.

(I will say, in the name of equality, I think they do also admit some male students now.)

No filters, just pure sky.
Anyway, after a nice wander, we headed towards our next destination, which was a dakgalbi place nearby. Ewha seems to be full of cute little boutiques and cafes, all very classy and trendy to suit the locals.

At some point, the sunset happened and it was incredible.

Also incredible was the dakgalbi. Not too spicy and really delicious. It's really interesting, they just plonk it all in and cook it up for you, running around to different tables as and when needed. It was PACKED in there, and I'm not really surprised.

I think we actually walked to Hongdae from there, because although I usually get the subway everywhere because I think everything's miles away, a lot of places are only a 30-45 minute walk.

In Hongdae we grabbed dessert at Molly's Pops, where they make special fancy ice lollies in flavours like makgeolli (Korean rice wine) and...erm...cheese.

The alcoholic flavours are 19+, and I can see why! I could really taste the makgeolli in mine, but a bit sweeter and milkier.

Following a theme, we ended up going to our first makgeolli bar. They had normal style as well as some seasonal specials, so we ordered a honey one and a watermelon one. These bars are meant to have some excellent wines, brewed themselves, and incredible food to complement it all.

I think we just ordered some pork rolls as we were already full from dinner and dessert, but they were so good. They had a great sweet and spicy sauce on them, and were freshly made and flavourful. The presentation in this place was wonderful too, so I can see why they're popular.

The watermelon was really lovely and refreshing, but I think after a while it got a bit sickly, compared to the honey which was just lovely through and through. Honey is quite expensive here, so I've missed it.

I'd love to go to some more of these makgeolli bars, just because the food is so good, so maybe you can expect to see some more posts like this in the future.

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