The Secret Korean Foodie Life > Dongdaemun

[Dongdaemun] The Secret Korean Foodie Life #77 - Taeguk-dang (태극당)

“Taeguk-dang” is the first bakery in Seoul that is opened at the same spot from 1946. It is such a famous place and after being open for a period of 70 years, quite often it is told that all three generations in a family (grandmother, mother and daughter) all had their share of the history and bread here.


For those avid Korean drama lovers, this is has been a filming spot for many Korean dramas, especially ones that were set to have a background in the 80s and 90s. And among them the most recent starring was in the drama “Reply 1988,” where the two characters “Sun-woo” and “Bo-ra” came here to date during the scene in 1988 (this is quite realistic… since my mother and father met around the mid-80s and they also told me that they dated at “Taeguk-dang” – back then “bakeries” and even “cafes” were not a common place in Korea and it was a very romantic place that the man took the woman to show-off his “trendiness…” hahaha…. my dad… a trendy man…? Hahaha…).

Anyways, they say that the breads “Taeguk-dang” has been baking for 70 years has kept their taste exactly the same arriving at today, where their old-Korean style breads are still loved by many. Now if you think of a “bakery” you probably think of and artisan one with baguettes and loaves of bread… but in Korea bakeries are places to buy a snack or a dessert, rather than a staple, so they are a little more fancy and generally the bread sold are more on the sweeter side – this is also same with the bread at “Taeguk-dang,” which has certainly had very strong influence on the “Korean” style baking.


Now the tasting part, the three most loved and famous items here are the “Castella (sponge cake made with egg, milk and honey),” “Salad Bun (morning bun with veggies mixed in mayonnaise)” and the most famous “Monaka Ice-cream (wafers filled with vanilla ice-cream).” Now that you see the three most loved menus, you clearly can see this bakery has been here for 70 years… it is quite a common usual menu today but it was something surely amazing back then. The taste itself is quite similar as, something of a very familiar, friendly and cozy taste that made me think back in my times… although it has been a short one of 30 years or so. 

“Taeguk-dang” is certainly some place I would be coming back, just because of the scent and memory it gave me going back to my childhood holding my mother’s or granny’s hand. But I guess it isn’t a place to come for taste, since the taste they sell here is now too common and done better at other ice-cream shops and bakeries. Unless you have fond memories like me or a super fan of “Reply 1988” this probably isn’t a place worth travelling for…


7, Dongho-ro 24-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
서울 중구 동호로 24길 7

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