Haebangchon, a gentrifying neighborhood adjacent to the American army base, is often called the "expat ghetto" of Seoul, and it's home to some of the city's best international cuisine. Whatever their nationality, most of the locals in this primarily residential neighborhood would agree that Casablanca, a tiny, unassuming shop on the neighborhood's main strip, sells the best sandwiches in the city. Brothers Wahid and Karim Naciri have worked hard to bring a taste of Morocco to Seoul and have done so with much success. In fact, it's the norm for the two brothers to sell out of their sought-after sandwiches on a daily basis. What makes the sandwiches so good? Some say it's the crispy, fresh bread, sourced from a nearby Syrian bakery. Others argue it's the delectable combination of Moroccan spices and preserved lemon marinade that dresses the four knock-out sandwiches on the menu. Still others swear it's the ingenuous inclusion of makooda, deep-fried mashed potatoes. Whatever the secret ingredient may be, it's certain that each item on the limited menu—from the semi-sweet carrot salad to the simple but beautifully balanced Berber omelet sandwich—is good. Darn good. As is the service. Expect a smile from the dedicated brothers, who greet each patron as if he or she were a long-lost friend. (Just be prepared to wait in line for it.)
44-7 Yongsan-dong 2ga, Yongsan-gu
Our Rating Neighborhood Haebangchon Hours Tues–Sun 5–10pm Transportation Exit 2 of Noksapyeong Station (Seoul Subway Line 6) Phone 02-797-8367 Prices Sandwiches start at ₩5,000, sides at ₩3,000 Cuisine Type Moroccan/Sandwiches Web site Casablanca
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