15 MINIMALISTIC WHITE INSTAGRAMMABLE CAFES IN SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA


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I’ve traveled to South Korea a couple of times and have stayed there for an overall very long span. I’ve always wanted to make an ‘Instagrammable cafes’’ list of Seoul to add to the Singapore and Taipei ones, but cafe culture in South Korea is on a whole other level. It’s practically insane: almost every cafe you step in looks gorgeous and unique, and more often than not, the food and drinks they offer are also on that level. After some inner debate, I’ve decided to group these cafes by colors and themes. There will be many lists of cafes in Seoul, because there are many wonderful cafes in this city. Here is the first theme of many: Minimalistic and white. While the degrees of white and minimalism vary and differ in both tone and substance, I think that all 15 cafes on this list embody this theme well.

+I have tried to display the locations and opening hours as accurately as possible, but please keep in mind that most Koreans use Naver (kind of like what google is to the western world), as such, some of the cafe that are newer might not be displayed on google maps correctly (might be a few meters off only, but going to an altogether different neighborhood has happened to me in the past), or their opening time might change from one day to the next, I’d recommend checking out locations (whose addresses don’t feature the name of the cafe) up on map.naver.com (just copy and paste the name of the cafe on the search bar and use your chrome translation tool) and checking out their opening time through instagram (if they close they usually post about it). Alternatively if they have a geotag on instagram it tends to be as accurate as possible. Good cafe hunt.

1.YTAN

This cafe hidden in an alley in the Yeonnam-dong area features a white curved aesthetic space. The place looks tasteful and nice, but as time goes on, you start getting a bit uncomfortable sitting on what is essentially concrete. I’d spend a maximum of one hour, enjoy my coffee and delicious cream pudding and call it a day if I were you. Alternatively, suggest them to add pillows to their decor?

Instagram: @ytan_kafe

Menu: Here’s a link to their Mangoplate page with a picture of their Menu.

Opening hours: Wednesday to Monday from 1:00pm to 9pm. Closed on Tuesday.




 


2.cafe jogyok

Jogyok means ‘foot bathing’ in Korean, hence the name of this footbath cafe. There are different kinds of bath to choose from and they all smell wonderful and are very refreshing, however you need to make a reservation in advance (contact them through a Dm on Instagram) because they need to prepare it beforehand. They also sell their salts in packets that you can bring home if you want to. The price of service for one footbath + any drink is 12 000 won (9.88$). Even if you don’t particularly like footbaths, you should still check out this cafe: their drinks and Dango desserts are pretty good.

Instagram: @cafe jogyok

Menu: On this blog post, scroll down to the section where they talk about this cafe and the last picture is one of that of their menu.

Opening hours: Everyday from 11:00am to 10:00pm.



 


3.c.through

Before visiting this cafe, it’s important to note that the colorful and complex designs you see displayed above are only available on cold drinks (Lee Gang-bin -owner and creator of the cafe- says that the color formulas he uses would change a hot beverage taste, and he cares about the taste, not just the look, of what he sells). Also, before getting excited about the Van Gogh latte, keep in mind that it costs 30 000 won to execute (24.75$), regular latte art is around 8 000 won (6.60$) so you might want to opt for that instead. If you’re still keen on the Van Gogh design, try to Dm them on Instagram before going: only the owner produces it and he might not be at the cafe when you’re there. Yes, there are a lot of variables, but even if you don’t particularly like latte art, I would still recommend checking this cafe out: their desserts and other drink items are also interesting (And their interior is white! … Well… mostly).

Instagram: @c.through

Menu: On this blog post, just search for ‘menu’.

Opening hours: Everyday from 12:00pm to 10:00pm.




 

4.Vacant Shop CAFE

This is a studio that sells minimalist furnitures, specifically lamps and chairs, but also the occasional table. Artsy white props are randomly placed all over the studio: notably a good number of white egg-like candles and a couple of stray oranges and lemons here and there. The overall atmosphere is that of sophistication, but the drinks -depending on what you chose- might not necessarily match it.

Instagram: @shop_vacant

Menu: On this blog post, just search for ‘menu’.

Opening hours: Everyday from 12:00pm to 8:00pm.




 

5.pert coffee

Fine, quiet and fresh, Pert Coffee is a no-bullshit kind of place, but does greet a fair number of people throughout the day, so if you’d rather visit the cafe when it’s not full, head there close to their opening time.

Instagram: @pert_coffee

Menu: Here’s their Menu, be sure to use the automatic translating tool of your web browser if it’s showing up in korean.

Opening hours: Wednesday to Monday from 12:00pm to 9pm. Closed on Tuesday.


 

6.cafemula

Cafe Mula is packed with natural light and greenery, coffee and dessert are delightful, and there are even yoga classes offered sporadically throughout the months (as well as a small yoga attire boutique near their counter). Understandably, the cafe is full of people during the weekends, but don’t give up on it, weekdays are relatively less full and their tiramisu is worth the wait.

Instagram: @cafemula

Menu: On this blog post, scroll down until you find a picture of their menu.

Opening hours: Monday to Thursday from 10:00am till 9:00pm. Friday and Saturday from 10:00am till 11:00pm. Sunday from 10:00am till 9:00pm.

 




7.lightnessinsol

This is a very simple and neat environment, and as the sun falls in the evening the light gets reflected on their plexiglass seats and tables which give way to a slow and pleasant colorful show. Drinks are very refreshing, and the interior is a good reflection of minimalism.

Instagram: @lightnessinsol

Menu: On this blog post, just scroll down until you see a picture of their menu.

Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 1:00pm to 9:00pm. Saturday and Sunday from 12:00pm till 10:00pm.




 

8.vacances coffee

A refreshing surprise to find in an old building, the whole interior is white (shockers) and the bluish atmosphere due to nearby windows reflection reminds me of summer. You won’t regret coming here, even if it’s just to enjoy a quick cup of coffee and a side of waffle.

Instagram: @vacances_coffee

Menu: On this blog post, just scroll down until you see a picture of their menu.

Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 12:00pm till 9:30pm. Sunday from 12:00pm till 9:00pm. Closed on Monday.

 

9.sikmulgwan seoul

Sikmulgwan describes itself as ‘‘A distinct lounging ground for both plants and people’’ and I couldn’t give you a more accurate account of the space myself. If you like plants and art, this is it. The adult admission ticket is 10 000 won (8.25$) and also includes one drink. Stroll around the botanical garden, admire the art on the third floor gallery, or simply enjoy a normal tasting cup of coffee with plants. (Children admission ticket is 5000 won (4.12$))

Instagram: @sikmulgwan.seoul

Menu: Couldn’t find one.

Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00am to 10:00pm. Closed on Monday.

 



10.coffee at the place

Coffee at the place feels like an art gallery. Everything is black and white, including the coffee drippers and speakers, and the light and shadows reflected on their vertical partitions add a nice luminous ornamental touch to the environment. This space isn’t really wide, but it’s so white and clean that you won't even notice. Make sure to head to their rooftop terrace for a quick view of the city.

Instagram: @coffee_at_theplace

Menu: On this blog post, scroll down until you find the menu picture.

Opening hours: Everyday from 12:00am to 8:00pm.

 

11.cafe loby

Although the space isn’t that big - as the name suggests - it feels very spacious and is neatly and tidily decorated with contemporary items and isolated luscious green leafy plants. The dessert selection is adorable and drinks taste okay.

Instagram: @cafe_loby

Menu: Here’s a link to their Facebook page with pictures of their menu items.

Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 9:30pm. Saturday and Sunday from 11:30am to 8:30pm.




 

12.cafe vave

Cafe Vave has a very unique interior with sanded areas and an assortment of warm toned white decor and furniture. The music selection is pretty awesome and you might find yourself humming to the beat while enjoying a pleasant cup of coffee and a flavorsome piece of desert

Instagram: @cafe_vave

Menu: On this blog post, if you scroll down there’s a picture of their menu.

Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 11:30am to 10:00pm. Saturday and Sunday from 12:00pm to 10:00pm.

 


13.space coffeeboy

Quiet and tidy, this cafe’s interior changes to a dark red during the evening but stays bright and white the rest of the day (hence, it is added to this list). If the sunny side up egg in the pictures above looks weird, it’s because it’s actually mango pudding, but the rest of the items on the menu are pretty simple and straightforwardly good.

Instagram: @spacecoffeeboy

Menu: Here’s their Menu, be sure to use the automatic translating tool of your web browser if it’s showing up in Korean, and it’s easier to click on the ‘‘View as menu (origin) image’’ link.

Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 12:00pm to 12:00am. Saturday&Sunday from 1:00pm to 12:00am.



 

14.ush room

The curved chairs and tables as well as the floor are all wrapped in suede material, which gives way to wonderful sensory and visual gratification. Coffee and sherbet are delicious and the space is quite unique.

Instagram: @ush_room

Menu: There’s a picture of their menu on this Blog post, just scroll down until you find it.

Opening hours: Wednesday to Monday from 12:00pm to 8:30pm. Closed every Tuesday



 

15.003 archive

This cafe is full of unique props, furniture and various contemporary crafts. The floor is reflective and shiny, everything there looks like a work of art and it’s a pretty cool space. Sometimes they change their lights to something more colorful which makes the space look even more futuristic than it already does. Their drinks and food items taste good too.

Instagram: @003archive

Menu: There’s a picture of their menu on this Blog post, just scroll down until you find it.

Opening hours: Everyday from 12:00pm to 10pm.


+For some reason the address displays incorrectly when I try to link a map to my website, so here’s the direct map hyperlink which is more accurate.

COUNTRIESNour Salhab