When the weather heats up to the point I’d consider it to be the temperatures of an English Summer, South Korea, very sweetly, bring out all the summer desserts. Like PatBingSu.
The Korean dessert is traditionally a mix of shaved ice, red bean paste and ddeok and sometimes ground nut powder, topped with fruit – and you can get it at pretty much every cafe during the summer months in various forms. The most common (and possibly the most welcome – once you’ve seen the price of out-of-season fresh fruit in Korea) is the mixed fruit bingsu.
Traditional base of milk ice shavings with red bean paste, fresh fruit and ice cream on top.
There are plenty of places that specialise in creating crazy flavours of patbingsu, or that are just know for having the best/tallest/largest of certain flavours available. Pop Container in Sinchon specialises in super-tall oreo bingsu, cafe bene does some of the biggest bowls I’ve ever set my eyes on, Baskin Robbins does a brilliant flavoured ice cream bingsu (they sever 31 flavours of ice cream so if it wasn’t brilliant I’d be slightly disappointed), and one of the most famous is the super traditional offering from ‘It’s Huidong’s mum’ (희동아 엄마다).
The strawberry monstrosity in the first picture (and above) is the Strawberry Bingsu by Cafe Iceberry, my second bingsu of 2014, and despite not being fresh strawberries (the staff were super apologetic about that, bless) it was usual bingsu levels of refreshing for a warm Sunday evening.
I think as the temperature heats up I’ll venture to other parts of seoul to try out all the bingsu I can before I leave~
edit: Not that you have any reason to, but if you don’t believe me with regards to how popular bingsu is, Orange Caramel, a very cutesy sub-unit of the girl group After School, just brought out a song dedicated to it.