One thing that makes me fall completely in love with Korea is their amazing cafes, or, to be precise; it is their cafe culture that mesmerized me. For students, study cafes are the most “legit” place if we are not studying on campus. Talking about study cafe in Seoul, one of the best find I have is Dok-dabang (독수리다방) located near Yonsei University. It has the best combination of everything a cafe fanatic could ask for: Good coffee, quality snacks, quiet ambience, huge space and ample sunlight.
Backed by its rich history backdated to 1971, Dok-dabang witnesses the development of South Korea and how the landscape of Sinchon had evolved since the 70s. It is not restricted to those who wants to study. They have a huge common area separated from the study area, catering couples or small group visitors who prefer a relatively quiet place to chit chat and relax.
The cafe offers a gracefully rustic, library-like ambience. The wooden tiles, ceiling-tall wooden shelves, wood patio doors with gold linings and classical music loops softly at the background; all sums up to this academically friendly, nostalgic hideout for visitors.
The overall atmosphere feels more like a home library to me. With the perfect lighting coming in from the huge glass windows at daytime, it is no wonder a popular study cafe among Yonsei students.
Up there on the mezzanine floor has one of the greatest sunset views in Sinchon. If you are planning a romantic date night, this is a perfect place to bring your significant other to wind down before heading off to dinner!
The strictly-no-talking reading room: Dok-bang.
Now this place feels more like real study room, with personal study lamp equipped with every single seat. It looks like a good place for some serious study, no? One strategy that Dok-dabang managed to capture its visitors is their refill policy. You can have a coffee refill once for every drink you purchase. A Good deal isn’t it ; )The cafe also has two private meeting room for hourly rental to cater different needs.
Now talking about the food and drinks here at Dok-Dabang:
Latte, Americano, Irish Coffee, Mulled Wine, etc. I have never ordered anything that disappoints me here at the cafe. Their coffee beans are of the top notch quality one can find in any coffee speciality cafe. If you’re unsure what to order, try the Dabang Coffee (Check picture somewhere at beginning of the post), a milk coffee using their speciality blend as the base. ( 3 words to describe the froth? Rich, smooth and velvety, very good!) Okay, that is 4..5 words! lol
Affogato (please refer to picture waaayyyyy above) was a piece of art itself. I did not expect affogato to look THAT pretty! The sun-dried orange chips and the strong espresso blends so well together. A delightful, must-eat dessert in Dok-dabang.
They serve good pastries and cakes to go down with your drinks. This layered hazelnut cake is one of my favourites. I can’t remember the name of the cake, but the rich, nutty hazelnut aroma was lovely.
Last but not least, if you visit the cafe in the Summer, here is what you should not miss out: The Melon Shaved Ice (Melon Bingsu!). It is a melon flavored shaved ice with melon balls and a scoop of ice-cream. This seasonal dessert is very popular here. Sometimes you might need to wait up to 20 minutes for it — I’d say it is well worth the wait. Look at the bowl made of melon, instantly Instagram-worthy already! ; D
Highly recommended! Hands Down!!! Just bring one or two of your favourite books, or your laptop and spend half a day away in this beautiful cafe. It is a gracefully rustic cafe with good coffee, delicious cakes, and beautiful scenery. Remember to check out their outdoor terrace as well! You get the hustle and bustle view of the Sinchon Rotary area on one side, and the Yonsei University campus on the other side. Simply alluring.
Seoul, Seodaemun-gu, Changcheon-dong, 31-4 Dok-suri Building (독수리빌딩), level 8.
서울시 서대문구 창천동 31-4 독수리빌딩8층
It looked quite far away from the station but trust me, it will not take more than 10 mins by walk. It is super easy to find as well!
1. Come out from Sinchon Station (line no.2) Exit no.3
2. Go all the way down the road.(towards Yonsei University Main Gate). Until you see Holly’s Coffee, a coffee chain brand with red signboard.
3. The cafe is located in the building right after Holly’s, building entrance look like this:
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