Having an hour to spare before meeting a friend I decided to drop by COFFEE LEC (Limited Edition Coffee), a franchise which was neatly tucked away from the busy streets of Seoul. What caught my eye were the banners which boasted championship titles like ‘KNBC Champion’ and ‘World Barista’. Whilst my eyes were filled with golden coffee beans, I quickly went in to see whether the coffee made here really lives up to the title.
The founder of this franchise, Ahn Jae-Hyuk is a famous and highly respected Barista in Korea, winning the Korean National Championships (KNBC)back in 2005. Since then he opened up his very own small shop, trained many apprentices in which one (Ryu Yeon-Joo) recently became a Barista Champion of Korea, and even written his own book ‘Men Who Roast Coffee for You’.
The aroma of freshly roasted coffee beans wafts until it grabs the hairs of your nostrils pulling you into the cafe. You are here at potentially one of the best coffee shops in Seoul, so what is the recommendation? Well, the ‘Competition set’ which consists of an espresso and a Cappuccino was the recipe which made Ryu Yeon Joo the Barista Champion of Korea 2012. Another recommendation is the Black Series which is straight up black coffee with strawberry, milk cream, or blueberry flavourings. Strange combo I’ll say…
The competition set was flawless. Both the espresso and the cappuccino had strong aroma and a distinct taste which was very unique. The Black series however was too strong! The coffee and blueberry flavouring merged well, but I needed to bite on a piece of Twix bar every few gulps as it was a so bitter >_<
Overall I definitely recommend coming back here. The competition set alone is worth paying a visit and it’s only 10 dollars (remember you get a world class espresso AND a cappuccino! Good price!). It is a small enough coffee shop where you can just sit by yourself and just appreciate the taste while waiting for a friend. It was a little amusing as while I was taste testing I decided to eavesdrop on a blind date going on next to me. I remember hearing awkward questions and statements from the guy which made my fingers curl and maybe it was the sole cause of my Blueberry Black Series taste extra bitter. BLESS HIM FOR TRYING!
I’ve tasted and drank so much coffee….I need to pee.
HOW TO GET THERE
Seoul Subway Station
(Orange line) Sinsa exit 8 – Garosugil
As well as being a tiny little shop, it is also not on the main road of Garosugil which can make it a little tricky to find. So here’s a map!