Tom Donnie Jeju Grill Restaurant 제주 탐도니
It was 12 hours or thereabout when the pre-wedding photography session was finally over! The enthusiastic photographer had given Ryan and Valerie more shots than what was stipulated in the package. He was all out to woo us with his Korean humour and hospitality. In fact, he confided he does not take in clients personally anymore, letting his hired hands do the work, but because we were from overseas, he decided to get his hands dirty again. He didn’t say that of course. I did 😉
And talking about “dirty”, that’s what we had after the photo session. Jeju’s heuk-dwaeji (black pork) BBQ for dinner!
Jeju Black Pigs (Jeju Black) is also known as 똥돼지 ttong-dwaeji or “poop pigs” in English, and here’s why:
The Jeju Black is said to have a unique taste quite distinct from other breeds of pig and forms the basis of some well-known local dishes. The pork is smoked over burning hay allowing the smoke to penetrate the meat juices resulting in a flavour quite unlike regular pork and a meat that is somewhat chewier.
Until quite recent times, the pig was kept in order to dispose of human waste. They were housed in sties built below the outside latrines where their “food” was directly delivered. This practice was still current in the 1960s but has now given way to more conventional feeding. Some commentators are adamant that this change has adversely affected the taste. – Wikipedia
If you are visiting Jeju Island in South Korea, Jeju Black Pig or Jeju Black for short is a “must eat”. We were here for a few days and could not visit Jeju but we had the opportunity to taste Jeju Black right here in Seoul at Tom Donnie Jeju Grill restaurant.
The first few pieces I had was eaten without on its own so as to get the true sensation of this highly prized pig. Without masking the meat with any sauces, the true flavours were not corrupted. There’s no overpowering saltiness (no pre-marination), indeed, Jeju Black was juicy and much more chewy than the regular pork.
Although the price is almost double that of standard pork, for us, it is worth every penny spent! Ryan’s response was “Oooh, so good!” on the first
poop pop. I agree 🙂
I had a hard time locating the address for Jeju Tom Donnie as this is not a tourist spot. The locals eat here so I can safely say the taste was authentic enough even though nowadays the pigs are fed a common diet (waste-free).
We thoroughly enjoyed our Jeju Black dinner!
제주 탐도니 (literally translating Jeju Tom Donnie)
Address: 서울 강남구 역삼동 607-2.
607-2 Yeoksam-dong, Gangnam-gu,
Seoul, South Korea.
Tel: (+82) 02-542-3392
Happy eating 🙂