On a rainy morning, my Korean colleague suggested we try IL PUM, a new Korean restaurant at Amara Hotel. As a soybean enthusiast, I couldn’t resist the invitation to join them for lunch when they mentioned that the restaurant serves freshly made tofu stew and Ssambap Jeongsik daily.
We were surprised by the reasonable prices of the food, especially given that the restaurant was on the 2nd floor of the Amara Hotel. Since there were 5 of us, we decided to order some additional dishes alongside those from the Ssambap Jeongsik.
Banchan (Side dishes are refillable)
We chatted with the boss while waiting for our food, where he explained that every tofu dish at IL PUM is a labor of love by Chef Park Seong-won & his team. Everyday begins with the meticulous grinding of soybeans and careful oversight of every step.
Soondubu Jjigae 순두부찌개 ($16)
The original tofu stew (white) has a sweet, fresh taste while the seafood tofu spicy stew has a more robust flavor. We all agreed that it might be a tad mild for spicy lovers.
일품 수제두부 +묵은지 + 제육볶음
(IL Pum Suje Tofu + Aged Kimchi w Stir-fried Pork)
If you’re a fan of kimchi (sour ones in particular), this dish is an absolute must-try. According to the owner, the chef uses only fermented kimchi that’s been lovingly fermented for at least three years. It was because the time frame of fermentation for the well-aged kimchi stir-fried with thinly sliced pork would definitely blend well in flavors that complimented the soft firm tofu.
The dish is best enjoyed with beer or rice wine, making it an ideal choice for those looking for something lighter yet still satisfying.
Ssambap Jeongsik [Spicy(left), Soy Sauce (Right)]
Those pork bulgogi were tender and soft and well-marinated, with a good balance of sweetness and spice. There was a generous portion of veggies, including purple cabbage, which is rare in Korean restaurants.
(PS: Please note that this dish requires a minimum order for 2 people!)
Honestly, I can’t say enough good things about this dish – it’s not only delicious but also refreshing in our hot weather! The soymilk broth adds a unique twist, making it lighter and more enjoyable.I had this dish together with the spicy bulgogi and it has become an instant favorite, I totally see myself returning for it~
With a Google review rating of 4.8 stars, you can rest assured that you’re in for a treat. Overall, the food at IL PUM is simply fantastic. We were worried there might be a dent in our wallets, but it turned out to be quite a reasonable price in the end.
Plus, they currently offer a 10% discount, which is a pretty good deal! So don’t hesitate to give it a try and go experience it yourself!