Hello everyone to another edition of Mastication Monologues! Today I will be highlighting an expat haven in Itaewon where one can find Western quality breakfasts, burgers, and wings when they grow weary of the kimchi and non-existent Korean breakfast food. I’m talking about Richard Copycat’s All American diner located at 56-13 Itaewon-dong Yongsan-gu Seoul South Korea.
Now, I do enjoy Korean food and trying new things, but it never hurts to go back to food that is familiar to you. That what I was looking for when I walked into the diner, and I found it and then some. They have a pretty extensive menu that is filled with familiar breakfast staples like French toast, omelets, and skillets. Even though they boasted about the quality of their breakfast options in the menu, I was feeling like trying a burger since it was closer to lunch time. I ended up choosing was the wasabi burger. It had cheddar and pepper jack cheese, jalapenos, and a wasabi infused mayo. Yeah, you read that right, Japanese horseradish and mayo together in one potentially overwhelming combination.
When it came out, I was bracing myself for Western portions, but it was Korean sized which kind of wasn’t worth the 14,000 won. Plus, as most people have already commented before on the internet, the service at this restaurant is very slow. If you ask them for a refill or for free pickles, they either take twice as long as they should or forget in regard to drink refills. Qualms aside, it was a pretty funky burger in a good way. The bun was buttery and held the sandwich together quite well even with the copious amounts of wasabi mayo applied to the bottom bun. The beef patty was thick and succulent, but the cheddar cheese was pedestrian even though it was so unnaturally orange that it almost looked like I was eating a sunny-side up egg. However, I greatly enjoyed the spicy elements of this burger. The jalapenos were pickled like back home, and the wasabi mayo became more and more intense as I proceeded to munch on the burger. It wasn’t too overpowering like eating a whole mini portion of the Japanese horseradish, but I did have that burning sensation behind my nose that could send any possible congestion packing. The fries that came with it were average, but I preferred them since they were somewhat underdone and not very salted. So overall, I would recommend this burger if you’re into trying spicy things and like wasabi. They do manage to take very potent flavors and pack it into an easy to swallow package. So if you’re in Itaewon and want a little taste of home while still maintaining a foot in the Far East, try the wasabi burger at the All American Diner.