What to eat in Jeju Island: Local food – Black Pork on Black Pork (Heuk Dwaeji) Street

What better post to start off my Jeju adventures if not for food? And this particular delicacy is a Jeju specialty; aptly named the Jeju Black Pig, a breed of domestic pig found on the Korean island.

The Jeju Black Pig is a small pig with black skin (hence the name) with smooth coat of hair. It has erect, unfolded ears and a narrow snout.

black pig

Luckily for us we stayed a mere 10 mins walk away from the famous Black Pork (Heuk Dwaeji) Street. Coming out from our hotel (Ocean Suites), take a right turn and walk towards McD. The Black Pork Street is one of the adjacent roads, and if you’re unsure, just make sure the street has this signboard/arch with the little pig on it.
So cute right? 🙂

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There are a few of these specialty restaurants in a row. I walked up and down to read the descriptions and posters at the entrance.

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Most of them had been featured on many TV shows and papers, adding credibility to their business.

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While wondering around I saw a Korean guy having a smoke nearby where I stood. Since he look like a local I gestured to him with a thumbs up sign and pointed at the row of restaurants. He got my meaning and happily pointed at one outlet (Hwaro Hyang) in particular.
It was a good choice; the outlet was packed, the owners were friendly and the whole place was filled with the delicious smell of grill pork.

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Though I was alone the owner welcomed me warmly and gave me a table as soon as one became available. I had expected perhaps I would be made to wait for a smaller table since there were other big groups of diner waiting as well.
But no, it was fairly based on first come, first served. I must say that made an impression on me.

Once seated I was handed a menu. The menu is really straightforward. I opted for the pork though the pork belly is understandably a more popular choice. I didn’t really like too much fat between my meat.

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There were not much other options other than 2 types of rice – fried or non fried. As a lady took my order, I did point to her for a bowl of fried rice. She put up a finger to indicate number one (if I was alone) and I nodded. She immediately shook her head, saying something in Korean which I don’t understand but I guessed that she was discouraging me from ordering the rice. She went on gesturing that I won’t be able to finish so much food on my own. I smiled my thanks for her honesty.

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Service was quick too. The grill was switched on and left to heat up as she left with my order. She came back with a bottle of water and a cup. This is complimentary. When she returned again, she bought with her an array of bachan (starters/sides) – raw garlic, mushrooms,  dwejeong (red bean paste), garlic/sesame oil mix, bean sprouts, kimchi, seaweed with red spicy sauce, a kind of coleslaw dish, large pieces of something crunchy and pink and a small spring onions salad with dressing.

Then she went back to the kitchen for a tray of 2 pork necks (presumably 100g each since my order is 200g) and proceed to grease the grill with a big cube of pork fat.

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Then she placed the pork neck on the grill. I had thought that was all, but no, she added the sides of kimchi, mushrooms and beansprouts to the grill as well.

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Then she left me with all that food on the table. I happily munched away at the sides and waited for my pork necks to cook. Cooking is DIY so I flipped and cut up my meat as I wish. I poured my own drink and was pretty much left alone for the evening.

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Just like your usual Korean BBQ, you can choose to eat it with the green leaves or Perilla leaves (sesame leaves of Korea). Perilla leaves are commonly used for wrapping meat in Korea. Other leafy greens can be romaine lettuce, red leaf lettuce, mustard greens, etc.
In this container below I had 2 options; lettuce (the ones peeking out at the back of the perilla leaves) or Perilla leaves.

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Hmmm… delicious pork! Tender with a firm bite and though it was grilled without any marination, the meat was good to eat on its own. It certainly didn’t have any of the ‘porky’ or strong smell pretty prevalent in our local pork.

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I thought that was all but as I worked my way though all the food on the table a bowl of tofu soup and steamed egg was served. As you can imagine I had a very satisfying dinner!

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So remember, if you’re in Jeju Island, make sure you try the black pork! 🙂
** For Muslims, there are plenty of seafood restaurants around (but non -halal) and there is a halal restaurant in the city called Bagdad Cafe. 

Hwaro Hyang Restaurant
Black Pork (Heuk Dwaeji) Street
Jeju City
GPS:  N33° 30′ 56.6″ E126° 31′ 36.4″

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*This wonderful experience wasn’t part of our itinerary during our Jeju media familiarization trip organized by AirAsia X, but I went to the black pork street during our free + easy time. However our meals are covered by Air Asia X. Thank you AAX!

* AirAsia X flies 7 times a week from Seoul, Korea to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
* AirAsia X flies 4 times a week from Busan, Korea to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

FLIGHT SCHEDULE FOR KUALA LUMPUR- SEOUL, KOREA

Flights From

Departure/ Arrival

Flight No.

Frequency

Kuala Lumpur to Seoul

08:50/16:10

01:45/08:20

D7 0504

D7 0506

1,3,5

2,4,6,7

Seoul to Kuala Lumpur

17:35/23:20

09:35/15:20

D7 0505

D7 0507

1,3,5

2,4,6,7

  • 1- Monday, 2- Tuesday, 3- Wednesday, 4- Thursday, 5- Friday, 6-Saturday, 7-Sunday

FLIGHT SCHEDULE FOR KUALA LUMPUR- BUSAN, KOREA

Flights From

Departure/ Arrival

Flight No.

Frequency

Kuala Lumpur to Busan

08:30 / 15:45

D7 512

4,7

Busan to Kuala Lumpur

17:00 / 22:20

D7 513

4,7

Kuala Lumpur to Busan

01:15/08:30

D7 518

1,5

Busan to Kuala Lumpur

10:35/15:55

D7 519

1,5

Days: 1-Monday, 4- Thursday, 5- Friday, 7- Sunday