“It’s moving!” screamed our 2 year old while pointing at the chopped up octopus tentacles on the plate. Jeremy then proceeded to pick up a small piece, dipped it in sauce, put it in his mouth and started chewing! Everyone around the table chuckles.
A few of us then took turns eating the still moving tentacles. I have to say, it’s actually quite tasty (with the sauce) and not as bad as I expected.
This scene took place inside a restaurant within the Noryangjin Fish Market. One of the unique experience here is that you can purchase fresh seafood here at the market and proceed to hand it over to a restaurant operator within the market who will then cook the seafood for you to eat right there and then!
Here’s our experience…
Dizzying array of seafood
When we went in 2015, there was only the old market. Now, a newer expanded section has been opened. We heard it’s cleaner and that both the old and new sections are open.
1 – Walk around and survey
We recommend you first walk around the various stalls and see all the seafood that’s available to you. Ask for price but do not bargain unless you are ready to purchase. (Tip: Most of them know basic english and mandarin, so you can ask for price in those languages if you don’t know Korean. When in doubt, we would bring out a pen and paper and write down the numbers to make sure we’re not misunderstanding the cost).
2 – Bargain
Once you know what you’d like, ask for the price and then bargain. We were able to get at least 10% off the originally asked price. If you’re a great negotiator, you might get even more!
3 – Bring the seafood to a restaurant
Some stalls have restaurant “reps” waiting and can be asked to take you to their restaurant so they can cook the seafood you bought.
What we did instead was purchase a bunch of different seafood from various stalls and go to a restaurant in the market ourselves. We chose this specific restaurant because our family were here before and the chefs at this restaurant spoke fluent mandarin and food was deliciously prepared.
4 – Enjoy your meal
We probably bought at least a dozen kinds of seafood. The restaurant chefs made sure we tried various methods of cooking for all the seafood. Majority was simple steaming of the seafood though. Our favorite were the raw wriggling tentacles and the steamed king crab!
We actually ate so quickly that we forgot to take a picture of all the dishes!
The market is open 24/7 and is located at 674 Nodeul-ro, Dongjak-gu, 서울특별시 South Korea.
Noryangjin Fish Market
Have you been to Noryangjin Seafood Market? What was your experience?
Hope this helps for those who have yet to try it!