Monday, 17 November 2014

Pre-Birthday Treats

In the ongoing series that is "My Birthday Celebrations", I will tell you about the weekend beforehand, where we went out for Korean BBQ (understandably the best thing ever and so my favourite thing to eat in Korea)

Nick and I went with Erin and Morgan and we basically had a bit of a food adventure around Hongdae. After a rather large amount of BBQ, and possibly the best I've had so far at this point in time, we headed off in search of something sweet. We grabbed some fruit Mochi, which I failed to take a photo of because we were too busy devouring it, but it was so soft and velvety and the filling of a chunk of fruit was far preferable to the usual red bean paste.

Then we decided to get something to drink, whereupon we were introduced to O'sulloc, the land of tea, tea and more tea. Everything is tea and nothing hurts.

I ordered a rather exotic sounding Tangerine tea that I think used various ingredients from the lush mystery island of Jeju. (I say mystery because I know barely anything about it other than it has Olles and it's very gorgeous)

The waitress placed the little lid on top, saying "Wait. 3 minutes. Enjoy happily."
And enjoy happily I did! It was great tea, with wonderful presentation, and a couple of little biscuits on the side that I am fairly sure were flavoured with tea. They might even have been traditional Korean tea biscuits in a bundle similar to that of the tea set we bought at the guesthouse in Fukuoka. They certainly go with herbal teas a lot better than a Rich Tea ;p

We also grabbed some (second) dessert. Nick had the Green Tea tiramisu on the left, and I had the monstrosity on the right. I'm pretty sure it was just called "roll cake" and there were a lot of interesting-sounding flavours but of course I had to go for the one that was simply named "black".

It looked like a car tyre full of ectoplasm, and when I tasted it...I was confused. The texture was really nice, but very different to what I was expecting. The green tea filling was just as expected, just the right amount of bitterness, but I couldn't work out what "black" was.

Turns out it was just very dark chocolate, hahaha. It was great!

We also got a little art card with each of our orders and I'll definitely be back for more tea!

Next on our little tour was Artbox which, to my shame, I've never actually been into before now. Possibly a good thing, this store is like a wonderful mix of Daiso, Paperchase, and Accessorize all bundled into one.

I tried on these "glasses" for a laugh and fell in love but I'll never wear them so I left my accessory heart in Hongdae.
Wandering a little more, we came across this odd-looking building. In the large windows (garishly framed with all kinds of bright lights and colours) we could see balconies that people were hanging around on, and flashing lights. My first thought went to cat cafe, then nightclub, until I finally saw the television screens in each room.

Ah. Noraebang.

We decided, why not, let's go in to the absolutely ridiculous-looking building and have a sing.

We went for an hour long session and surprisingly didn't have to wait at all. We followed the signs to our given room number, like we were in the quirkiest hotel I've ever visited.

And this was our room.

It was surprisingly lavish for a karaoke room, with big soft chairs and a chandelier, as well as tambourines and shakers for anyone not singing to join in.

One of the big problems with this is finding English songs that we both know and are singable. Not always easy, but as usual Nick and I sang TVXQ's How Are You and bossed it. As usual. 100% for a song we barely know half the words to? But then 45 for an English song we know all of? I call fishy business! :P

Oddly, Super Bass is also harder to sing without alcohol?
We finished up, I think, with a rousing chorus of Miley Cyrus before our time was up and we had to vacate the booth. Again I took the time to appreciate just how odd the decor (read: awesome) in this place was, and snap a selfie, before it was once again time to leave.

And then home? No! Of course not. It was across the road for froyo! I've missed it since coming here (not that it was easy or affordable to find a self-serve place like this at home, but you could buy the tubs and that was good enough)

We went to Snowspoon and I was impressed by the wide range of unusual flavours available, in particular the red wine one! So of course I was sensible and got some of nearly every flavour as well as possibly some of each of the toppings. Talk about complementary flavours...

The red wine was really interesting (and good!) and the mango was great as expected.
I think really my favourite flavours were the milk tea and peach, because they had subtle flavours that would mix well with other things but also tasted more unique and refreshing than the usual strawberry/chocolate/plain/etc.

But the Yuza was great as a standalone froyo (maybe with some chocolate or fruit toppings to balance out the sharp bitter sweetness) and the chocolate was a really good one.

I will say the rice flavour was really good as an alternative to the plain or vanilla flavours! Vanilla can sometimes be a little cloying, and plain can be...well...plain. The rice had just enough flavour to make it worth it, but wouldn't drown out any other flavours. If you've ever had horchata, it was like a very mild version of that. Delicious~

Crunch time: You pay by weight. We were buying so much between the four of us that they couldn't weigh them all at once, oops. I would say mine was by far the heaviest and yet it probably cost the same as a self-serve froyo half the size at home.

That's my monstrosity there on the left.
We went upstairs and pigged out in the very cute upstairs seating section (downstairs is mostly just the service area) and generally had a very fun time before it was getting late and we had to go home.

Inspirational quote. Awkward ending. Bye.

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