In Seoul where everything changes so fast, it is not easy to find a cafe with ’60s and ’70s vibes. Hakrim Dabang is one of those few. This retro cafe opened in 1956 in Daehangno. Since then, very little has been changed.
The cafe is on the second floor of the building.
There is a narrow wooden staircase to the second floor.
It features antique decorations with the posters of musicians and the classical music is typically played as background music.
The place is not big but the space is used very efficiently with a mezzanine floor.
The name of Hakrim Dabang came from Hakrim Festival (학림제) which was organized by Seoul National University (The surrounding area was the site of Seoul National University until 1975). Dabang means “coffee shop” in Korean.
I had the regular coffee (5,000 won) and Sinyoung, co-organizer of this blog, ordered Viennese iced coffee (6,500 won).
Hakrim Dabang was favored by famous Korean writers, poets and artists including Chon Hye-Rin (전혜린) and Cheon Sang-byeong (천상병). Today, its costumers range from students to K-drama fans who have seen this place in the Korean dramas like My Love from the Star (별에서 온 그대) and The Heirs (상속자들).
I do like its retro feel and the taste of coffee. I hope this place will remain the same for long.
Address : 94-2 Myeongryoon-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Telephone : +82) (0)2 742 2877
Webpage : hakrim.pe.kr
Operating Hours: Everyday 10:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Transportation : Hyehwa Station (Seoul Subway Line 4), Exit 3. Walk straight for 10 meters.