Budget Cafés in Wangsimni







In Korea, small cafés are increasingly becoming popular among people of all ages, especially middle/high school or undergraduate students. When you are strolling along the street in Wangsimni (왕십리), you can easily spot many of people standing or ordering their drinks outside the café. That’s because most of cafes are so small that there are very few seats to take with friends, even some having no seat at all. The representative places are listed below; Paik’s Coffee, Juicy, Kingkong juice & coffee, and EDIYA.


1. Paik’s Coffee (빽다방)

If you are so into the Korean culture including televised program, you must have heard of the business man, “Jongwon Paik”. He is officially a business man, as you look him up through online. He is the owner of 28 restaurant chains selling grilled chicken, Chinese-style food, spicy bulgogi, and etc. The total number of restaurant itself around the world is over 480, according to the research. It’s an amazing figure that one person has invented and operated various kinds of restaurant under his name. Lately, tvN has launched a new program called “Mr.Baek: The Homemade Food master“ other than “three kings by Mr. Baek”.

He has expanded his business scale into the café, “Paik’s Coffee”. He decided to go with cheap price and good quality of drinks. The cheapest drink in that cafe, which is Americano, costs 1,500 won. Considering other multinational chains such as Starbucks, it has strong price competitiveness that can attract the majority of people wanting to save money. Not only beverage like coffee or juice, they sell unique desserts for consumers. One of them is bread with salad and corn or with long sausage. I’ve never tried both of them yet, but some of the bloggers said that these two have some level of popularity among people.


2. Juicy (쥬씨)


Source: blog.naver.com/hamdohwa (Left) / blog.naver.com/rlacofls63 (Right)

You need to be careful on the name of it, because there is another similar brand, which is called “Juice”. Both of them are selling fresh juice in common, but the color of logo and sign are slightly different. In terms of “Juicy”, as you can see picture above, red is the main color. However, the other one has decorated through orange color. The difference of each flavor is not that big in my opinion, so don’t be too hesitated when choosing café brand.

쥬씨 메뉴

Source: blog.naver.com/hamdohwa

The price is depending on how many fruits you choose to put in. When selecting only one fruit, you pay 1500 won for a middle sized cup or 2800 won for an extra-large one. There are banana, kiwi, apple, tomato, orange, and pineapple on the menu. If you want to drink juice containing two fruits at a time, like mixture of strawberry and banana, the price would be 2000 or 3800 won, respectively. You can order strawberry & banana, orange & pineapple, mixed berry, and etc. Keep in mind that mango, grapefruit, blueberry, and avocado are belonged to the latter price due to the relatively high cost of ingredient. Besides fresh juice, diverse menu of coffee and lemon-ade are always sold, too.


3. Kingkong juice & coffee (킹콩쥬스)

킹콩쥬스 외관


Source: blog.naver.com/aion527

Kingkong juice is the newest one among this four. So, the things this café mainly sell are similar with “Paik’s coffee” and “Juicy”. It means that fresh juice and coffee are sold in that place, too. However, there is a big and special distinction that can differ with other ones. That is “Tiramisu Ice cream”! When I went to Hongdae lately, some people were holding a cup of ice cream added with Tiramisu, and many people were waiting in line to get that food. So, not only just beverages, this café has approached into the different aspect of food, following with the social and cultural trend. They even sell “Wine Affogato” serving in the same plastic cup! Looks so cool~


4. EDIYA (이디야)

EDIYA has been considered as one of the places you can buy a cheaper drink than other franchised ones. Most of the franchised cafes sell a cup of ice-Americano at least 4100 Won. However, it is only 2800 Won for regular size in EDIYA. Although they have strong competitors like “Paik’s coffee” in terms of cheap price, EDIYA has already amassed many customers who have visited on a regular basis. That’s because they keep making innovative and new drinks consistently.

이디야 메뉴판

Up until now, the beverages in EDIYA are categorized into three, which are “Coffee Varieties”, “Other beverages (non-caffeinated)”, and “Flatccino”. The entire number of drinks is over 45. Also, you can stay longer inside of this café, while doing homework or talking with your friends. The three cafes that I mentioned above are not available for you to remain their seats for a long time. So, you can spend a little bit longer time in EDIYA doing your own works! Wouldn’t it be good when you would like to study in café?

I hope these information give you helpful information when choosing which cafes to go, as you save money at the same time. When a specific trend like this one is coming up, I will be back with   more interesting articles. Yey!


Article by SooJung from Korea, a Junior in Business Administration

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