Refreshing desserts the whole family can agree upon

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Refreshing desserts the whole family can agree upon


Grapefruit sorbet. By Ser Myo-ja

The three women in my family - my mother, my little sister and myself - have such different palates that it is nearly impossible to pick a restaurant during our rare opportunities to dine together. My mother is an absolute Korean food lover, while my little sister has a bottomless stomach when it comes to sushi. I, on the other hand, am all about sweets and desserts.

But we have one thing in common when it comes to food: a love of grapefruit. My mother has a fondness for grapefruit juice, while I like to cut the fruit in half for my breakfast. And my sister has a passion for citrus fruits of all kinds.

My sister and I recently strolled around the Samcheong-dong neighborhood on a sunny weekday afternoon. It was only a couple weeks ago, but the sun was so strong and hot that we needed to take refuge.

So we ducked into The Cafe, located on the ground floor of the Kukje Gallery. In addition to the gallery, the building is also home to a famous French eatery called The Restaurant and a wine bar as well as the cafe.


Grapefruit jelly

As soon as we walked in, a showcase of gorgeous cakes welcomed us. I have frequently visited the cafe, because I love the coffee and the variation of cakes. But during our recent visit, we settled for two rare desserts we knew we could agree upon, the grapefruit sorbet (7,000 won, $5.62) and grapefruit jelly (5,000 won).

The beautifully pink sorbet came in a clear martini glass, and the portion was generous enough for both of us to enjoy it. The icy texture of the sorbet and the bitterness and sourness of the grapefruit were so refreshing. It felt really relaxing to sit by the window and look outside at the streets baking under the summer heat while enjoying frosty spoonfuls of sorbet.

The grapefruit jelly was even more delightful. The pink jelly was topped with peeled grapefruit and mint leaves. While the sorbet had more of the bitterness of the fruit, the jelly did a better job at capturing its sweetness. The silky texture of the jelly and the tang of the grapefruit flesh worked so well together in my mouth.

“These are perhaps the best grapefruit desserts I have come by so far,” my little sister, a New Yorker who is quite picky when it comes to food, said with satisfaction. I agreed.

The cafe’s menu features a wide variety of other sorbets and ice cream including espresso, green tea and caramel. It also serves good coffee and tea, as well as light meals that are a step above casual in both presentation and taste.

The Cafe

Location: 59-1 Sogyeok-dong, Jongno District

Hours: 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Telephone: (02) 735-8441

by Seo Myo ja []

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