battery park restaurant review {seoul}

If you are living in Seoul or planning on visiting, you must visit Battery Park located near Myeong Dong station.  (From exit 4, walk straight a few minutes, and you’ll see the State Building. Take the escalator down and you’ll see it across the Starbucks.)  Little did I realize that my cousin, who is a few years older than me has become a restaurant mogul  in Seoul. He has recently opened multiple restaurants, ranging from Korean, Japanese, fusion, and even an American brunch place in the works. And, I’m in the midst of convincing him to open a Korean restaurant in Singapore (of course).

During my short and unexpected visit to Seoul a month ago, I was able to finally visit two of his restaurants that are located in the Myeong Dong State Building. We had a big family dinner after my grandmother’s burial service at his two restaurants. They are actually located right next to each other. One is called Battery Park and the other one is Kobachi. The “younger” adults, went to Battery Park, a fusion place, while the “older adults” went to Kobachi, a Japanese place.

I really loved the modern and clean interior of Battery Park. I was impressed with their menu and range of choices. They even had beer from Craftworks Taphouse there. Well, I quickly learned that when your cousin is the owner, we get great service and selection of food! He ordered us appetizers and entrees from the menu. There was a delicious salad with grapes and goat cheese. I specifically asked for the fig & prosciutto pizza with pesto sauce, which was well worth it. There were also some unique fusion dishes like the spicy pasta with pigs intestine (Korean dish).  I also really recommend the black sesame cream spaghetti! That might have been my favorite after the pizza.

Battery Park also has a great selection of bar food including big hamburgers with lots of french fries! We tried another fried platter that included fried chicken, onion rings, fries, and more. At this point, I was getting pretty full as the entrees kept coming out. My cousin even sent over a few sushi platters from next door. It was quite the interesting, but delicious combo of dishes. I knew my grandmother was smiling down on us. She would have been so proud to actually come to one of my cousin’s restaurants in person. She was definitely one of the best cooks I knew.

Obviously, there’s always room for dessert! Battery Park had some unique and delicious dessert dishes including a dropped ice cream cone, banana pudding, and Oreo cheesecake. I admit at this point, I could barely shove any more food in, but I tried. I’m always a sucker for good banana pudding. They actually opened a second location of Battery Park in the new Dongdaemun Design Plaza & Park! I hope that all of my fellow foodies and bloggers (ahem, Melody, Dyanne, Elaine, Derek) in Korea will add this restaurant to their list of places to check out! 🙂

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a place called home

I walked back to my apartment and I passed by the familiar durian stand with the strong pungent smell, the seedy motel with “interesting” late at night guests, and the comforting signs of 7-11 on the corner. After a long thanksgiving weekend in Malaysia, I was glad to be back. Sure it was nice staying at the fancy Shangri-la hotel, but the minute I got to my apartment, I felt relieved to be back home.

Living abroad, it’s easy to get confused about where your “home” truly is. My permanent address is my parent’s home back in New York. Yet, I don’t really have my own room there anymore. A bunch of my winter clothes and books are stored in the basement in boxes.  Every year as I go back to visit, it feels a little less like my home and a bit more foreign.

After 4 years in Korea, it felt like my home. Now that I moved, I miss Korea terribly at times.  After 4 months of being here in Singapore, this foreign place is slowly starting to feel a bit like home. Even though they say home is where the heart is, what do you do when pieces of your heart are scattered all over?

Where is home for you? 

The Slice of Life Challenge happens every Tuesday and is hosted by the Two Writing Teachers.

Celebrating Valentine’s Day!

I’m a bit late posting this, but here are some of the heart maps & heart poems my students created. I had the students cut out hearts using the painted paper they made. One one side they put a heart map, where they map out all the things in their “heart”. Then, I had them choose one thing from their heart map to write a poem about. The poem went on the other side. After, I laminated their hearts and punched  a hole at the top. I hung the hearts up in my classroom.

Also, I made chocolate for my students and put them in little plastic baggies with other bought chocolate. It’s super easy to make the chocolate. You buy the chocolate morsels for melting and then put them in the plastic molds. After, you put the plastic molds in the fridge and it hardens in a few hours. 🙂

Simple Valentine’s Day Paper & Cards

I learned how to make painted paper from my a great co-teacher last year! So I had the kids paint red & pink painted paper and this is what we can came up with.

First, get blank paper, paint & a thick brush

Next, paint horizontal streaks across the paper.

For fun, you can have students paint dots or designs on top!

Now with all this paper, we cut out hearts where students made heart maps and put their poems on. We will be hanging them up in our room. I will try to posts some photos on Monday! Then, we also used the painted paper to make Valentine’s day cards and crafts.

quote of the week

This quote reminds me of my first year as a teacher. I thought I wouldn’t make it for year two. I remember I was so surprised when my principal asked me to come back for another year. However, I did manage to survive my first year while teaching in an urban public middle school in Manhattan.

I remember when my mentor teacher came into my class to try to model good teaching and afterwards she was like, you have a really hard class. I remember breaking up a fight between two 6th grade girls in the highway and finding chunks of hair on the floor(not mine). I remember trying really hard to not break down in front of my students.

There were good memories too! I had some really sweet students that year as well. They also taught me the milkshake song, which I quickly realized was not about drinking milkshakes.

I can definitely say though that those rough first few years of my teaching career definitely did strengthen, challenge and toughen me. I’m so thankful for going through all that because it did make me become a better teacher.