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Jeju Sagye


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Jeju Sagye

  • 1095-1 Yuyuan Lu,
    near Fenggang Lu

    Changning District


    5 mins from Jiangsu Rd
    158 0056 8541
    Mon-Sat, 6pm-midnight

    Editor’s Description

    Last updated: Feb 2, 2024
    Tiny, exclusive izakaya on Yuyuan Lu just in front of Cannery, run by a handful of handsome Korean chefs. The space is intimate, the concept is cool, but the rotating menu can be hit-and-miss and the bill is substantial. Booking mandatory.

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    • Several months ago, over a dinner party, a number of the guests were regaling about a recent dining experience in Shanghai, located in a now defunct old noodle shop on Yuyuan Lu just along from the Cannery.

      Fast forward to Shanghai and Jeju Izakaya. The tiny space is not much more than eight seats at a bar with an open kitchen around what could be billed as the kitchen pass.

      My understanding is that Izakayas are essentially Japanese taverns – drinking houses with a menu of small dishes for snacking while drinking. It literally means “stay sake shop” so traditionally this was a place where you could sit and drink on the premises.

      To book for dinner atJeju Izakaya, one can only reserve via WeChat, so no walk-ins, no phone calls to book, which becomes one of those Catch 22 situations. 

      I decided to visit the restaurant and attempt to book, no go either, here is the business card and check back on WeChat from the 1st of the month.

      Luck would have it that I was able to get two spots midweek through a cancellation, so was happy as Larry, arrived for the second sitting at 20h30, with high expectations which started off well, with warm and friendly interactions and dialogue with both of the chefs, they took the time to explain each dish as they were served, and the story behind each dish, along with the pairing of the shochu and wines.

      The food was a bit hit and miss I felt, some dishes lacked adequate seasoning in my opinion, some dishes were just too simple. Price wise it didn’t break the bank when you had the set menu and the suggested beverage pairing either, came to 1,321RMB.

      Going as a couple felt it a bit boring, and believe it would have been better with a group of like-minded people ....the other three couples, all Chinese were too busy surfing their own "moments" and did not appear to be enjoying the dining experience. 

      The end result is I feel the restaurant is overhyped somewhat, coupled with the seemingly mystic of having to book via WeChat, and only from the 1st of each month, paying a deposit, having two sittings, only 8 seats etc. etc.  I would not rush back.

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