Gyeongridan is quickly becoming one of the trendiest places in Seoul. The outskirts of Itaewon, were known mainly as the hill that leads to HBC or the hill to Craftworks. But over the past couple of years, a few notable establishments have popped up in the area. We decided to try 5Bey because ST and I both felt like some burgers. Ahh, if only we knew it was going to be a fifty minute wait for a slab of meat on a large piece of bread, we could have headed to Left Coast Artisan for a real burger.
How to get there: The easiest way to get there is to take the subway to Noksapyeong Station (Line 6) and Depart from Exit 1 or 3. You will need to cross the street so make a left and head up and over the bridge to the other side of the road where all the shops and restaurants are located. Once you descend from the stairs, walk about 250 meters until you see Street Churros on your right. There will probably be a massive fucking line, so punch your way through the alley until you see 5Bey on your right.
Now the wait begins: When we arrived at 5BEY it was about 4pm and it was already packed. We assumed there was going to be a wait, which I honestly don’t mind if the food is exceptional. The server informed us it was going to be about a 40 minute wait, but that we could grab a table and have a couple of beers. Okay, sounds good. We select our menu items and head up to order. The server puts in the order and we head back to our table. Now, we expected that it would be a 45 minute wait for our food but not the beers. But after about 15 minutes, we realized our drinks weren’t coming. ST went up and inquired about our drinks. They said it would be out immediately; yet we did not sip on our refreshing beverages for another 8 – 10 minutes. Over twenty minutes for fucking beers and a Coke! Amateur hour.
Food and Drink: Today I ordered an Avengers Burger, Cheese Fries, a Great White beer and two Cokes. ST ordered 5BEY Works, American Fries (USA! USA!) and a Great White beer.
The Avengers Burger (15,000KRW): Two beef patties, two slices of American cheese and a two strips of bacon topped with a horseradish mayo made for an interesting burger. First, I noticed that the bun was huge. It overwhelmed the burger and took away from the flavors within. The horseradish was a little runny, but the flavor was really nice. I loved the creamy textures of the mayo with the spicy tinge of the horseradish. I nice combination and a great condiment for the burger. If I had to go back, I wouldn’t hesitate to order it again.
Cheese Fries (7,000KRW): The Cheese Fries were absolutely horrible. I don’t know what they are thinking. The are thin, flimsy, store-bought fries with liquid cheese and onions pilled on. It was truly disgusting. I didn’t even finish it. Honestly, true American cheese fries are not overly complicated to make. The first step is to buy some real American cheese, grate it over the fries, toss on some chunks of bacon, and maybe a little sour cream. That’s all you need. Keep it simple and fresh.
5BEY Works (9,000KRW): ST went with his usual. The 5BEY Works was good. The burger is topped with cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion and 1000 island dressing. Like the Avengers burger, the bun dominated the burger in so much that it took away from the flavors in the gut of the burger. There wasn’t that much meat, but it wasn’t enough to really draw too many complaints. ST has eaten here before and has been satisfied. That said, ST lives in Gyeongnidan. Personally, I wouldn’t make the trip down to Itaewon for it.
American Fries (9,500KRW): The American Fries had a lot of stuff on it. Much like America, it had many different varieties, but they do not necessarily all work together. There was 1000 Island dressing, some bacon and that liquid cheese. I had a bite of it, and it was just too many odd flavors rolled into one. It was trying too hard. Again, the cheese was liquified. Keep it simple.
Lost Coast Brewery’s Great White (8,000KRW): I love this beer. For summer it is a perfect beer to sit out on the patio with. It is light and refreshing and it has a hint of fruit to it. Perfect for the warm Seoul afternoons.
Value: My bill came to 35,000KRW and ST’s came to 26,500KRW. Honestly, it felt like I was eating at Kraze Burger. There was nothing special about the meal that would make me want to go back, and the fact that it took well over 45 minutes to receive my meal does not bode well for this place. If you are in the Itaewon area and you really need a quick bite, there are so many more options including Two Broz and Left Coast Artisan in Itaewon. As for HBC, I’ve never had a problem with Bomb’s Burger or Jacoby’s. If you are not from Itaewon, there are so many better options it’s almost mind numbing. Good luck gentle reader.
Who Should Visit 5BEY: In a pinch with a lot of time on your hands and you don’t want to head to either HBC nor Itaewon. Sure what the hell, give it a try. Saw a kid there in a stroller, so it looks kind of family friendly.
Who Should Avoid 5BEY: Very overrated and such a long fucking wait. If you are in a hurry, you really need to keep the time in mind. Also, 35 bucks for a burger, some shitty fries, a couple of Cokes and a beer is not for the budget traveller.