Seoul, Korea: O’Sulloc Tea House, Insadong

We just came back from Seoul in late Feb (yes it was freezing cold but hey we managed!) and I must say I’m already looking forward to my next trip back to Korea! We were at the very busy Insadong on a Saturday afternoon after touring GyeongBok Palace and were looking to huddle somewhere out of the cold. As luck would have it, I spotted O’Sulloc which had been on the itinerary as a place we could drop by for post-dinner desserts in MyeongDong but since we found it at Insadong, we decided to head in. A really good decision on hindsight because we found out later from their sales staff at O’Sulloc’s Lotte supermarket space that the one in MyeongDong was undergoing major renovation.

First floor of the O’Sulloc branch on Insadong-gil sells their wide range of teas (grown on Jeju island) and crockery. It was particularly packed on the first floor since they were giving away mini tasting cups of hot green tea to everyone who walked in. You can imagine how many people wouldn’t mind something hot given it was about zero degrees celsius (or colder) outside.

On the second floor is their full-fledged tea house serving drinks and desserts. if you get the seats right by the window, you could do some people-watching. The lady who attended to us very kindly explained how the current promotional set worked in her halting English for a good 5 minutes. The promo meant we could pick two drinks and a cake. You could pick from green tea latte and/or honey apple milk tea for drinks, and for dessert, either the green tea tiramisu or the green tea cheesecake. We also ordered the SeJac (slighty more intense than the original green tea) and an earl grey cheesecake to go along.


Everything took a long time to be served but we attributed it to the fact that they were running on full house. On our second visit which was on a weekday night, service was much faster with less customers. Yes, we went back again ’cause we were in the area and we really enjoyed our first visit 🙂

I would recommend you go for the promotional set if it still is available. It’s not only value for money but the honey apple milk tea and cheesecakes were extremely yummy. The former had little soft bits of apple in the tea and the earl grey cheesecake (not on the promo set) had little specks of earl grey tea leaves in it, nothing like what we’ve had in Singapore. Everything else we had from the menu were also great but Seoul’s not the cheapest of cities, so expect to pay about 9-15USD per drink and 6-9USD for dessert. You can get a sense of the place and brand via their website here.

Interior of O’Sulloc @ Insadong

Green Tea Latte

Honey Apple Milk Tea

Se Jac Tea

Green Tea Tiramisu

On our second visit, we had the green tea ice-cream which I highly recommend you try too. A big swirl of green tea ice-cream came with a mini cup of concentrated green tea which you pour all over the ice-cream. The green tea actually froze when it came into contact with the ice-cream. We also had the roll which seemed really popular and we could see why with its soft sponge (the Japanese also seem to have an obsession with soft sponge rolls). Every drink and dessert we had was very well balanced and not-too-sweet which is right up my alley. I have to admit the presentation (read: crockery) was delicate and beautiful which definitely upped the experience.

Green Tea Roll

Green tea to pour onto the green tea ice cream

Green Tea Ice Cream

Address: 170 Gwanhun-dong Jongro-gu, Seoul

Directions: It’s on the main Insadong-gil on the end that’s closer to the GyeongBok Palace so it would be a nice tea-stop post tour. If you’re entering the street coming from GyeongBok Palace, the store would be on your right.

Open daily from 9am – 10pm (Except on Sat when they close later at 11pm)

– S