18 Sep Coffee Libre
Coffee Libre in Seoul’s Yeonnam-dong is coffee worth the trip. It’s near some of my favorite restaurants in Seoul (Lie Lie Lie for your Banh Mi fix), and a thriving weekend crafts market. You can easily spend the day in Yeonnam-dong, but I would visit Coffee Libre even if it was at the bottom of a well because they have such incredible coffee. Their Mexican Cup of Excellence was a transformative experience where I tasted such delicate citric and floral notes I couldn’t go back to enjoying dark or all-city roasts in the same way.
Coffee Libre’s cafe space is lit dim with interesting filiments, making it seem cozy rather than small. It’s got bar-style stool seating across from a single table low to the ground next to a traditional medicine cabinet. Whole beans and brewing accessories rest on the drawers. I’d guess you could fit about 12 people including those waiting on a bench for their coffee to be made so it’s more of a stop-in shop worth visiting to buy beans. Once upon a time they had a location in Hangangjin with more space, but sadly the building was sold.
I would highly recommend their cold brew, which needs a bit of time for the ice to melt before it reached its peak flavor. Their Cup of Excellence in all of their international iterations have been… excellent although about double the price of what you would pay for 200g of coffee elsewhere. Still, it’s worth it every now and then to drink something special. They do have coffees in between the $12 blends and $25 cup of excellence and at around $17 for the quality they are a steal. If you’d like to try a bunch of coffee at once I’d recommend going to a public cupping. They are free and when I went the barista did the entire lecture in both Korean and English so you will be in good hands.
Beans: Roasted in Seoul
Price: $, $$ whole beans
227-15 Yeonnam-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul
서울시 마포구 연남동 227-15