Last night we decided to go out for dinner and try the new gastro-pub Reilly’s . I do love a good gastro-pub back home and was very excited about the prospect of having one in Seoul, especially after checking out some of the pictures of the food on their website. As soon as we walked in I felt at home. There was a warm and friendly atmosphere, just like walking into the bar at Cheers. It’s decorated in true gastro-pub style with a long wooden bar, exposed brick and stylish yet mismatched chairs. With the rustic and modern decor it’s certainly got that country pub feeling, if they had a fireplace they would be set. Designer pubs seem to be all the rage these days but this one has got them all beat. With its cozy and relaxing atmosphere I could certainly see myself sitting here for a full on day time drinking session.
As well as the food they have an impressive number of craft beers and lagers. I’m no expert but they seemed to have quite the range of beers from around the world with the capacity for more. Niall concluded that the prices were also very reasonable. They even have Belgium bombers on the menu, for around 25,000 you can get 750ml of various beers in a giant boot shaped glass, how cool is that?
On to the food. We ordered the scotch eggs (10,000) for our starter. Niall absolutely loves scotch eggs , so he was practically giddy when he saw them on the menu. They are rarely even found outside the UK, so we were very surprised. Every now and then I do make them for Niall myself as a special treat. Personally I wouldn’t eat a scotch egg for all the tea in china, they have always repulsed me to the core. However when these turned up they looked so good I decided to try a little bite. They were exquisite, perhaps because they were hot rather than cold it made the difference but by god they were tasty. The egg inside was gloriously fresh and creamy. The mince was well seasoned and full of flavor and the outside coating was crisp and golden. They also came topped with a tomato sauce that I think worked perfectly. I ended up eating a full one.
We also ordered the Grail (25,000) a gigantic burger filled with an egg, bacon, pork, onions, cheese and a burger. It came with a choice of sides but I obviously went for the wedges. Although the burger wasn’t as tall as the ones in the promotional pictures it was still rather large. The first bite certainly warranted that Mmmm factor. The burger had a great proportion of ingredients which really complimented each other. The sauce was amazing, I’m not sure where it was in amongst the many layers but suffice to say it rocked. Niall practically inhaled his half. The burger was very good, but was it worth the hefty price-tag? I think it just about was, it is a massive burger and I think you could easily share it between two of you without feeling short-changed. I would be keen to try one or two of the less extravagant burgers on the menu too.
The last dish we ordered was the braised lamb shank (29,000). I love lamb shank and it was great to see one on a menu. The lamb was cooked perfectly and fell off the bone. It came with sweet potatoes and watercress. Although I liked the actual lamb I would have preferred it with a different sauce or gravy, Niall disagreed though and thought it was fine the way it was. Every item on the menu also comes with a recommended beer pairing which I thought was a nice touch.
Despite a rather hefty bill of 91,000 I think I will be frequenting Reilly’s on a regular basis. The waitress was friendly and knowledgeable. They have a great menu with lovely food, for me better than rivals Craftworks, The Wolfhound or Prost. They serve my beloved June Bugs (they are not on the menu but they will make them for you). They also have plenty of beer to keep the menfolk happy. All in all a great pub.
Reillys is located at 3F, 123-32 Itaewon-dong, Yongsan -gu, seoul. Take a train to Itaewon station (Line 6) come out of exit 2 and walk straight for about 100 meters, it’s next to Smoothie King. You can call them on 02-792-6590 or check out their facebook page for more details.