Busan Bites: Gugine Nakjibokkeum

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Served hot, nakjibokkeum (stir-fried octopus) is a favorite among Koreans. Although smaller than muneo, another popular variety of octopus, nakji is favored for its taste and budget-friendly price.

Nakjibokkeum is very much a part of the city. Restaurants carrying the dish have long histories here, including Gaemijip in Gukje Market, serving patrons for 40 years. While Gugine Nakjibokkeum is far younger, it has already gained a loyal following, including the Gwangan 3-dong (neighborhood) community head.

For Gugine’s nakjibokkeum (6,000 won), choose mild (soon-han), regular (bo-tong) or spicy (mae-un). Lots of prepared nakji is put with vegetables, sauce and crushed garlic into a large casserole pot and boiled at the table before serving. Add shrimp to the dish to make naksae-bokkeum or gopchang (tripe) for nakgopbokkeum for 1,000 won more.

Ladle your stew over some rice and add chives or seaweed flakes to your taste. Some udon (thick white noodles), dangmyeon (glass noodles) or ramyeon at the end is icing on the cake (which you probably won’t have room for after this magnificent feast). Free side dish refills are available at the self-service station.

Restaurant Information

Address: 410, Yeonsu-ro, Suyeong-gu, Busan

How to get there: Suyeong Station (Metro lines 3 and 4), exit 4. The restaurant is about a three-minute walk from the exit.

Hours: 10:30 a.m. to 10:50 p.m.

Information: 051-754-7776

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