Seoulfood: Braai Republic Itaewon

For a long time I’ve wanted to share a magical little place in Itaewon (Seoul) called Braai Republic.  Introduced to me by he who mustn’t be named back in May, I’ve now been to the restaurant at least 6 or 7 times.  This South African spot is fairly unassuming, and unless you knew where to go you might have some trouble finding it.  On my birthday, I sent a pin from Kakao Talk which seemed to do the trick.  Scroll down for a map, hours, and contact information.

Braai is the South African word for barbecue and the party which comes along with it.  From braai Republic’s open kitchen you’ll smell chicken, beef, pork, lamb, and the odd seafood dish wafting your way.  South African standards like Potjie, Bangers (proper sausages – maple, chorizo, and spicy varieties currently), Wors, Boerewors, Pap, and Biltong are all on the menu.  Meat pies are made in house, take an eternity to arrive at your table, and are well worth the wait (yes, even when it’s your birthday and your tummy’s been grumbling all morning).

We also ordered up a carafe of wine, because when at Braai Republic, do as Cabernet Sauvignon says!

The sides are a-plenty too.  The carrots, pap (polenta), coleslaw, garlic potatoes, salad, sweet potatoes, and creamy spinach are all on point.  I definitely wouldn’t suggest this place for a vegetarian, but in a pinch they’d have no problem putting together a scrumptious and satisfying meal.

Braai Republic is open Monday through Sunday.  On weekdays it opens at 5PM and weekends at 12PM (Noon).  Take the chance on an open table if you’re walking through the neighbourhood and have a hankering for Potjie.  Don’t chance it if you’re making it your brunch, lunch, or dinner destination.  Make a reservation by calling 070-8879-1967.  The lamb shank and bunny chow are only offered on the weekends.   I recommend the bunny chow, and definitely make sure you come hungry and ready to share.  The creamy spinach was away for a while (what is “rainy season”, guys?), but now it’s back and I couldn’t be more thrilled.  Seriously – the creamy spinach is what dreams are made of.

Be sure to check out Braai Republic’s website and Facebook page for more information.

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