I discovered a new cafe in my neighborhood! It’s called ‘Harunohee‘ and it’s literally about the size of someone’s bedroom. But as they say, good things come in small packages, and like most other miniature things in Korea, every inch of space here has been cute-ified and every ornament has been placed with great intentionality.
For the majority of the time I was there, I was the only customer…. I guess they aren’t getting much business yet. Since it was so empty, the owner lady and I got to talking, and we ended up chatting (well, trying to chat with my broken Korean) about lots of different things, such as what it’s like running a cafe (she’s only 26 or 27 years old- impressively young to own a cafe!), what I’m doing in Korea, and even how I’m vegan. When I first walked in there, I asked if they had soymilk (they don’t), so then later she asked me why I don’t drink milk, and that’s how we got onto the topic of me being vegan. Then she said that next time I visit the cafe, she’ll get soymilk for me! See, it pays to make friends with cafe owners…
Their menu also didn’t have many tea options, which was surprising. The only tea they had was green tea, which I’m sorry to say, tasted unusually bitter and almost ‘seaweedy’. Bleh. But she did ask me what teas I like, and hopefully she will take some of my suggestions (English breakfast & chai, all the way!).
Later on though, she surprised me by bringing a hot mug of sweet lemon tea that she had just made on the spot with fresh lemon juice. On the house! Seriously, have I met my new best friend? ha. It was delicious~~ waaay better than the green tea, so hopefully she will put that on the menu too.
I also got to show her my art website (www.mipalee.com), and she really liked my work. So then I gave her one of my postcards and she hung it on the cafe wall! How awesome is that! (It’s the postcard on the very left of the photo; ‘Tree Hugger‘.) So the next time you’re in the Gunja area, stop by this cafe to enjoy the peaceful ambiance, wireless Internet, friendly service, and most importantly, my art on the wall! Even though there is room for improvement on their menu, this tiny cafe is a refreshing ray of independent sunshine in my neighborhood that is gradually being taken over by corporate giants.
Directions: Gunja Station, Line 5 & 7, Exit #6. When you come out the stairs, walk straight for a few blocks, towards Children’s Grand Park. Harunohee will be on your left.