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For Contributing Editor Matt Rodbard, the food of Korea has been on his mind as of late — and he wasn't going to miss a chance to eat on native soil. He recently wrote a guidebook detailing the top 40 restaurants in New York City, so he was eager to visit what he jokingly calls “the motherland” (he's not Korean, but pretty damn excited about the cuisine).

On the way back from my recent trip to Vietnam I had a long layover in Seoul, South Korea. I was tired, no doubt, after sweating through my shirt at the steamy Hanoi airport and catching little sleep during my overnight flight to Incheon International. But the food of Korea has been on my mind as of late, and I wasn’t going to miss a chance to eat on native soil. I recently wrote a guidebook detailing the top 40 restaurants in New York City, which can now be downloaded as a free app. So I was eager to visit what my wife now calls “the motherland” (she was on many of our visits to barbecue joints and jjigae sellers and knows my growing passion).

I was lucky enough to have Minsang Shin to show me around. Shin is an editorial director at Essen, one of Korea’s largest publishers of cookbook and food magazines. Here’s what I ate with her while we dashed around town.

Also see: 7 Korean Restaurants In NYC That Think Outside The Lettuce Wrap