Korean Menus #1

I love translating things. Which is good, what with me being a language teacher and all ... it kind of helps to be obsessed with language ...

Anyway, one of the most important things - if not THE most important thing - you need to be able to do if you visit Korea, is read restaurant menus. Because there's soooooo much good food to try! So here are a couple of menus translated. Actually, I never took any pictures of menus inside restaurants ... these are the signs outside the restaurants ... But if anyone has any good pictures of actual menus, please send them my way and I'll put them up in my next menu post!

1. First, the sign for a  쭈꾸미 restaurant.

baby octopus



slang word that means something you 'crave' or have a craving for. (Oh yeah, I''m really craving baby octopus so bad, mm-mm)

쭈꾸미 철판구이
Baby octopus grill

This is one of my favourite 'special treat' dishes in Korea. Why? Because it's one of the very few dishes I've ever tried in Korea that was actually SPICY HOT! Like, really spicy. Not 'spicy for wimps', which is how I would describe some other so-called 'spicy' food I've had in Korea, unfortunately. No, when I had this (at a different restaurant) it was really hot hot hot. It's a big hot pan full of a mixture of yummy things in spicy sauce, the star of the dish of course being the whole mini octopi.

2. Next, a kinda retro-looking sign for a fish restaurant.

 The spacing on this sign is a bit crazy, but it does read left-right, not up-down!

Variety of fresh sashimi

각종 various

활어  live fish
(they're kept in a tank outside the restaurant, and freshly killed to order)

회 sashimi
(raw filleted sliced fish, in case you didn't know ...)

fish sushi

~ 탕
~ soup

As you can see in red on the sign, the name of this restaurant is 二鶴日式 (이학일식).

You can see something on the menu called 이학정식, so I think that must be their special course menu, as 이학 is the restaurant name and 정식 means a set course meal, or table d'hôte. Actually I don't know anything about the name '이학' really, but when I did an internet search for it a lot of Japanese style seafood restaurants came up! I think it means 'Two Cranes', which sounds quite lovely and poetic indeed, but I don't know how that relates to raw fish. Um, maybe because ... cranes ... eat fish? If you know more about this than me, please leave a comment below!


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