Goldfish Point Cafe

I love Goldfish Point Cafe. It’s almost a second home to me. I should confess, I used to work here while studying at UCSD, and so my review is coated with  many wonderful memories, all enriched by nostalgia. Management was lenient, to put it kindly, and I’d often take the solo night shift so I could sit and drink wine and read on the patio. I’d keep the place open late and extend my stay well into the night. After living in Korea where it’s only viable to sit on a patio around 3 months of the year, I’ve come to appreciate these patios much more since I’ve returned. One New Years when some friends and I couldn’t decide what to do I opened the place up and had a mini party here.

I love Goldfish. It’s warm and welcoming here. But by far the best part of Goldfish is the view. It’s location on La Jolla’s historic Goldfish Point has kept me coming back here for at least a decade. Goldfish won’t wow you with their coffee or food, but the view and friendly staff will intoxicate you. And if you’re foolish enough to come here to study, best of luck. That’s not to say the food and drinks aren’t good, they are, but they’re nothing to write about. They’re merely complements to a perfect afternoon with a book or a walk on the beach with a special friend.

1255 Coast Blvd
La Jolla, CA 92037
Open 6a-8p.


Rakiraki Ramen & Tsukemen

As my friends were mostly asian while growing up, and as convoy is a very central location, I spent much too much time floating around convoy. For me convoy carries heavy associations of just slightly grimy tea cafes with young thugz, and old korean ladies grocery shopping. Things in convoy seem to constantly change, but never evolve; its constantly stuck in 10 years ago. I see the same lowered rice rockets and the same drunk old men stumbling out of karoake. Is Morning Glory still in this plaza? 15 years ago it was a Sunday ritual to get tea at Tapioca Express and then head over to Morning Glory to read the lately Engrish failures.

Rakiraki is a very welcome addition to the scene. Its pursuit of modern design extends to every part of its business. The food holds down the fundamentals with some amazing ramen while still pushing the bar with its unique ramen burger (where ramen serves as the bread section). It’s interior has a beautiful industrial design with an open kitchen and zinc countertops. And it’s website is… damn sexy, with minimalistic design and large beautiful photos. Even their social media team is rocking it. It’s refreshing to see a business care for every corner of their brand strategy.

But on to the important part, how’s the food? Well… it’s phenomenal. But first, here’s my buddy Daniel explaining to me the importance of pure alkalized water. Thanks Dan. Also Dan is Japanese, so this restaurant is Japanese approved.

Spicy Premium Hot Ramen $9.40

As this was my first visit I had to stick with the basics. They have a wide selection of ramen varieties including original, premium, tonkotsu, miso, shoyutonjotsu, rikimaru, and with choices for spiciness level. Check out their menu for the full list. Apparently their hot sauce is pricey because they charge an additional $1.25 for it.

Rakiraki uses a chicken based soup as opposed to a typical pork base. This gives a cleaner composure while somehow maintaining a complex and oil-rich texture. Every ramen is also given the choice of aburi chasiu (pork) or chicken. I myself went with the aburi chasiu, and Dan opted for the chicken. This ramen is perfection. I dare say it might rival my long-standing favorite place in LA: Daikokuya. I haven’t had Daikokuya in almost 4 years though so it’s hard to judge at the moment. Every component feels perfectly crafted together. The noodles are al-dente; the egg is soft and bouncy with an almost runny yolk; the broth is piping hot; and the ingredients are smoothly blended with no single overpowering notes. The pork and chicken are moist and generously portioned, and the broth is rich and creamy.

Premium Chicken Ramen $8.75

I just may have to come back sometime for that ramen burger. It looks kind of disgusting, but also kind of wonderful. Here’s a pic from their website:


Rakiraki Ramen & Tsukemen
4646 Convoy St. #102
San Diego, CA 92111
sun-thurs 11a-3p 5p-11p
fri-sat 11a-3p 5p-12a


Daniel Kiyotomo OzekiMarch 4, 2014 - 12:50 AM

yaaay i made it on your website!!! ^^

Daniel GrayJune 17, 2014 - 6:24 PM

dude, this site is gorgeous. I am glad you are keeping it up.

Coreanos Kitchen 코레아노스키친 – The Best Mexican Food in Seoul

My brother in law, okay actually my brother’s wife’s brother (a distinction we have to make much too often), treated me out to an amazing Mexican restaurant this week. If you follow this blog you know I’m not a fan of Mexican food in Korea. Nothing has yet come close to the real stuff. Coreanos, I’m glad to say, has become my new favorite Mexican spot in Seoul. It’s still a bit pricey, but finally the quality matches the price.

Coreanos started in a food truck on the streets of Austin, Texas in 2010. After winning numerous awards for their street fare they literally went in the exact opposite direction and opened a flagship store in one of the highest priced areas in Seoul, on Apgujeong’s famous-10-years-ago Rodeo Street. Though Rodeo doesn’t claim quite the foot traffic and prestige it did 10 years ago, it’s still a hot spot with some of the best fashion retailers and restaurants in Seoul. Coreanos somehow fits in well. We went on a lazy Wednesday afternoon, and while the streets were sparsely populated, there was a nice buzz down in Coreanos Kitchen.

I knew we were in for something great when the nachos landed. The nachos were typically delicious, as nachos are, but the salsa was incredible. Flavorful, fresh, and best of all, SPICY. While red salsa is typically more spicy, here the green takes the heat. When I asked for more they generously gave me one  bottle of each, which I lavishly flooded over each item.




Now let’s get into the food. For the full menu check out their FOOD MENU and DRINK MENU.


Grilled Shrimp, Carne Asada, and Citrus Chicken 3,300w each

I think the pictures speak for themselves here. Wrapped in fresh corn tortillas, each taco was hand crafted with fresh and vibrant ingredients. I personally only had the citrus chicken and it was great. The chicken was nicely marinated and cooked just right. The tomatoes, herbs, and salsa were spot on. And best of all, jalapeños were served on the side. Perfect.



OG Burrito 9,000w

Okay, the OG burrito was the one item I didn’t care for. Actually I didn’t care for it at all and it almost ruined my palette. Sweetened galbi and caramelized kimchi just didn’t fit with the rest of the items in our meal. It was overly sweetened and the flavors didn’t mesh together in my opinion. There were no technical faults here, and perhaps other people like this, but it didn’t seem right to me. Fusion fail.



Three Wise Fries 12,000w

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.

Menu description is all that’s needed: Voted Best Fries in America. Chicken, Beef, and Pork + three different hot sauces served on fries, with pico de gallo and grilled onion.

Just… be wary of heart attack. This thing is big, and probably not good for the heart, or liver, or stomach, or intestines. Basically anything but the tongue.



Meat Quesadilla 9,500w

Quesadillas are generally small and overpriced, and no exception here. But at least it was good. Fresh ingredients, nice sauce, nice crisp on the tortilla. Overall deliciousness.



Coreanos Coronarita 13,000w

I’m not sure what’s with this obsession at Korean Mexican restaurants to throw a beer in their margaritas. But two cute Korean-American girls were drinking them next to us so we thought we’d join the party. As usual, where the hell is the tequila? We asked if they had included some, and they insisted so. But I just tasted watery corona. But this is par for the course here in Korea, so can’t complain too much. Nonetheless, they look fun and make the girls happy.


And make the Sam and Dustins happy.



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Coreanos Kitchen – 코레아노스키친
강남구 신사동 657-11 B1
657-11 B1 Shinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu
Open 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, till 11 p.m. Fridays; 12:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays; 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sundays; closed Mondays

David Press-DawsonSeptember 1, 2014 - 11:30 AM

You got to try B’Mucho Cantina in Hongdae. Go there when you don’t want fusion stuff. The most authentic Mexican food in South Korea.

Gusto Taco – Another Mexican Place

Yeah the title isn’t all that inspiring. But that’s because the food isn’t either. It’s good, but not inspiringly so. But for Korea, it’s good. This is my grief with Korea, there is no good Mexican food to be found on this bloody peninsula. Of course I am spoiled, coming from San Diego where I ate Mexican food regularly and on occasion would drive 40 minutes over the Mexican border for some street tacos. ($20 of gas for $5 of street tacos seemed like a good idea at the time.)

But Mexican food in Korea just can’t hit the spot for me. But with that said, there are a handful of decent options, and Gusto Taco is one of them. Gusto Taco started as a tiny location in a remote part of Hongdae and recently moved to this brand new location right next to exit 1 of Sanso Station (상수역).

The new interior is quite sexy. The design is nice and modern with brick and most importantly it’s airy and open. One wall is removed, windows line the other wall, and part of the roof is removed. Even the kitchen is exposed.

The food is quite good. Standard style stuff you’ll find in Korea. Nothing really to scream praises about but nothing to complain about either. The meat was tender, it was spiced well, and all the ingredients seemed fresh enough. But my main complaint with it is the size. I went with three friends, and after we finished our meals we were all hungry. So we went back and ordered more, and then we ordered more. And my three friends were all petite Korean girls. In all we spent about 20,000w each… quite unacceptable in my opinion for Mexican “street food”.

Another complaint… their only hot sauce for offer was one bottle of spiced vinegar that gets passed from table to table. They really need to offer some real salsa.

Chipotle Pork Tacos 5,700w

Chipotle Pork Burrito 9,500w

Fish Tacos 7,500

Thanks for waiting Toby. Toby always has company when he’s waiting for me outside restaurants.


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Hongdae 홍대점 Location
서울시 마포구 서교동 342-16
342Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul Korea

Sangsu 상수점 Location
서울시 마포구 상수동 146-6
146-6 Sangsu-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, Korea


Fell+Cole Gastronomic Ice Cream

Fell+Cole! Besides having an awesome name (my last name is Cole), Fell+Cole is an amazing and unique ice cream shop. There are surprisingly few places to find boutique ice cream here in Seoul. In a city with cake and desert shops on every corner, I can’t think of any that specialize in ice cream. That’s why Fell+Cole is so cool. They really push the standards of ice cream norms with their wild flavors. Being a generally risk adverse person I’ve yet to try the more exciting Basil or Cilantro flavors, but I’ve definitely enjoyed Vanilla and Cherry+Almond. Check it out yourself. I think their description is quite accurate: “Korea’s first artisanal gastronomic ice cream made with all natural ingredients in small batches.”


Edit: I originally though the Hongdae location was set to close. Thankfully I was mistaken, because it is such a beautiful location!

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Tristan ChoiNovember 16, 2013 - 10:22 AM

Fell+Cole Hongdae location is being moved to a new location in June 2013. The address is 310-11 Sangsu-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul

Sarah KrasleyNovember 16, 2013 - 11:30 AM

Hi there! I had some amazing ice cream at F+C last week and I’m pretty sure the Hongdae location is not closing…maybe give them a call to get the details?

Tristan ChoiNovember 16, 2013 - 11:32 AM

Thanks for the great shout-out. Would you kindly correct the info on the Hongdae main store since it’s not closing any time soon. :) By the way, I am the creator of Fell+Cole. :) so great to meet you.