Seoldo: Premium-Aged Unlimited Beef in Wirye

Seoldo: Premium-Aged Unlimited Beef in Wirye

Seemingly hidden in a side street of an apartment complex in Wirye, Seoldo offers unlimited beef at an affordable price, making this a great go-to spot.

10 min read

Originally reviewed on August 31, 2019

Name

한글 🇰🇷 ENGLISH 🇺🇸
설도 Beef Round [Specialist]

If you're looking to take some pics for the 'gram, sit near one of two windows; otherwise, it'll be quite dark, even if you go during the day.

Price

Korean Won 🇰🇷 United States Dollar 🇺🇸
₩21,500 ~$18

For this flat rate, you get unlimited beef for one person. There are different tiers, but they may have changed recently due to COVID-19.

Drinks, sides (stews, soups, noodles), and additions are extra, but very affordable.

Operating Hours

Day Open Close
Everyday 17:00 24:00

Open daily unless stated otherwise; hours have shifted due to COVID-19 as of 2020.

Location

Seoul Seek Recommendations

  • 👑 Signature
  • ✅ Counting Calories
  • 🌶️ Spicy

 

한글 🇰🇷 English 🇺🇸 Price 💵
무한 소고기 Muhan [Unlimited] Beef Special for 2 👑 ₩43,000
소고기 된장찌개 Beef Soy Bean Stew ₩5,000
등심 Top Sirloin 👑✅ N/A
부채살 Flat Iron Steak ✅ N/A
갈비살 Tender Rib Meat N/A
살치살 Chuck Flap Tail N/A

Depending on the type of tier you get, the meat may vary; ironically, although the place is named after a bottom round cut of meat, that specific cut is not popular here. Although the yukhoe served is created from this cut.

The signature is the top sirloin, which is aged in a premium way by wet-aging it. This is common for unlimited beef restaurants, and is mostly used as a marketing tactic. Buzzwords, sort of. Sounds good though, right?

Overview

Tucked away within a side area of a planned apartment city, this establishments sits a stone's throw away from a cinema and mall, which lies adjacent to the apartments. It is in a quiet residential area where you'll be hard-pressed to ever see a foreigner.

The restaurant itself is quite spacious in the back, but narrow in the front (where the light is good for photography). Luckily, we got the front-row seat as it were, and had the ability to get some good shots off.

One of the most strange things was the addition of a tortilla-like disc of flatbread, coupled with undercooked onions and random cloves of garlic and fusion pesto.

An empty and lackluster attempt at Mexican street food, this didn't work at all. It was a strange wrap-like construct that clashed with the otherwise run of the mill Korean BBQ joint. The triangle pieces they gave were way too small, too, if you couldn't tell.

For the sake of everyone involved, I'm going to act like that didn't exist, as the rest of the meal was great.

Side Dishes

Just the usual, with some sauce; kimchi, corn salad, some onions, and a dipping sauce similar to tartar 
They also offered a unique take on yukhoe; a pasta fusion dish, which wasn't that bad, and balanced well
The rice was presented nicely in a large bowl, offering enough space to move it around if need be
The soy bean stew was very aromatic and thick; small chunks of meat lay at the bottom

The Main Event

The charcoal being dropped in and lowered slowly

You may be looking at this from a Western perspective and wonder why the charcoal is shaped like this; this is what's known in the restaurant industry as a long burn briquette, and the reason they're shaped this way is to aerate better while burning. This allows for the customer to experience a longer burn time while eating, preventing burn out.

Essentially, it keeps the meat at a higher temperature, cooking, longer. The reason this is useful, is because in Korea during BBQ sessions, between talking and drinking, they may very well last upwards of 3 hours. If you run normal-grade burn charcoal, that is usually broken up and charred, it'll lose steam after about half an hour.

You'll see unlimited beef places, and higher-end meat places usually go for the hexagonal briquettes, although there's no real correlation or hard statistic out there which supports this; just an observation.

This was right before our New York City trip
The owner slides us the goods
You're looking at the top sirloin and flat iron steak, followed by the rib meat and chuck flap
A top-down angle of the platter, with the two mushrooms and bits of corn
This meat is of a nice quality, never-frozen, and aged well
The marbling as you can see is also respectable
This is the second plate we got, with the same cuts, just different physical cuts
We're going to throw these two on first, and check out how they fair; this is the top sirloin and flat iron steak
The grill is piping hot, you need to make sure you rotate often, to avoid sticking of the grates
We decided to lob on the rib meat too, to check out how the fat reacted to the high heat
It's a good idea anytime you're given corn at a BBQ like this, to let it grill from the get-go; it takes a while
That's some nice corn, damn
The fat drips down and causes smoke to rise up; this flavors the corn stronger than if it hadn't
Cook it evenly and flip it often; roll it if you have to

Here's a pro-tip: whenever you're in a situation where you are designated as the Korean BBQ cook at a gathering, don't sweat it. Keep in mind when you have meat which has a very high fat content (check out the ratio on that picture above), you're going to have to tend to it way more. Why? Fat melts faster than the meat itself, and that changes the temperature and speed of the cook-time.

When that fat hits those long-burn briquettes, it's going to flame up. The reason being is, those types of briquettes are heated to a much higher temperature than your average meat spot, so that they can maintain that heat over a longer period of time.

You'll always be given metal tongs, no different than the ones you'd get in the West to cook a steak on a grill in your backyard. Use those to roll the meat side to side after cutting (or in the case above, just as they are due to the cut). Repeat this every 10 or 15 seconds, until cooked.

Another tip is to always take the meat off when it is partially raw, if you like it medium-rare. Why? When meat rests, it cooks more. Common knowledge. What isn't necessarily common knowledge is that in Korean restaurants, there is very rarely a dedicated tray, or dish, that you plop the meat onto once it is considered done.

Watch a Korean movie or drama with an eating scene in it; almost always, people will take the meat directly off the grill and eat it, or put it out on the ends where the heat is less. Keep this in mind.

These are things people rarely take into consideration, which results in meat being overcooked. Look around, and gauge how fast people are eating; are they ready to take a bite?

Cook it a little more, almost near medium-rare. Are they talking and taking it slow? Cook it blue-rare and let it sit on the outside a bit and throw out a quick indication to them that it'll be ready in about 30 seconds.

Although it is "just a meal" to the majority of people, when you break down the craft of Korean BBQ, and the timings needed to make things flow smoothly as the designated cooker, there are many layers you can unravel to make the guests' experience better; these are just a few off the top.

Keep an eye on the sirloin
Flip it over when you poke it and it seems ready (use the palm technique)
Flip that over; you can see the fire reacting to the rib meat fat
Caught the flame
Time to flip the corn over; the meat is looking perfect
The corn is slightly charred, which is what we want; the meat looks great
Smoke always makes for a great pic if the lighting is good, but focusing is another story
Hardly better than the last shot
You can see in the last three shots how the smoke travels; the vents were very strong and efficient here
This is the rib meat; the shine made it a bit out of focus, but the outside is a tad crispy
Almost done
My wife goes ahead and cuts the meat; you always want to do this when nearing full cook-time
Doing so allows for more coverage of heat and a nicer outside char (or slight char)
You always want to me tending to the meat, whether it's flipping or trimming burnt pieces
That's a hit
I was so excited to eat it, I couldn't focus (literally)
You want to see something like this when you cut it; neat, organized, able to be flipped easily
Doesn't get much better than that; this is the flat iron steak
Strangely the rice here was very high quality; a rarity at unlimited beef spots (usually day-old is the norm)

The salt here was higher quality than I had experienced at places similar to this (unlimited beef outfits). It tasted like it had a touch of seaweed to it, but had a strong finish. As you can see by the picture, it is a sea salt that is coarse, but had the flavor profile of a finishing salt, almost one that was pure flake.

If you're a salt enthusiast like myself, you'll notice a strange pattern where the crystals which appear to be more octahedral in shape (rock salt being one of them, which checks out here) have this same flavor profile, whereas the more delicate monoclinic prism shapes tend to lean sharper (more elegant fleur de sels). Table salt is, of course, cubic.

The meat is thicker than it first appears; this is the top sirloin
Throw on the chuck flap tail
A quick zoom-in
I'm smokin'
The perfect cook
This is how the chuck flap tail looks when done
Smoked
Top it all off with a cool soup, an ice soup with yukhoe and a rich kimchi broth served with fresh cucumber
The yukhoe is made in-house and is fresh as it gets; made from bottom round

Summary

This is not a fancy place, nor is it one with many frills or flash. Seemingly catering to families that want to just chill out and have a nice lunch or dinner, Seoldo offers a relaxed atmosphere with a clear-cut and easy-to-understand structure.

The wait staff are very friendly, and offer you help if you want to learn more about any type of meat on the menu, where it is from (all Korean, if you ask), or general insight into the side dishes.

As mentioned, it would be very rare for a foreigner to ever come across this place, so there is no English support. However, with this guide, you should have no problem at all.

If a friend or family member was visiting Seoul, I would take them here, or recommend it to those wondering where a good place would be. Affordable, very clean, and great quality.

You can't ask for much more.

GO TOP

🎉 You've successfully subscribed to Seoul Seek!
OK