While Busan has a long list of tasty local menus from Dwaeji gukbap (pork and rice soup) and milmyeon (wheat noodles) to Dongnae pajeon (Dongnae-style green onion pancake), the city offers a wide variety of international culinary choices as well. Today, let’s visit a few popular Italian restaurants in Busan.
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Kitchen Dongbaek (키친동백) – Gallery and Restaurant
Fine Dining of Italian Cuisine
85, Dalmaji-gil 117beonga-gil, Haeundae-gu, Busan, South Korea
11 a.m. – 10 p.m. (Break 3 p.m. – 5 p.m.)
- Subway: Line 2 (Green Line), get off at Jangsan station (장산/201), Exit 8 > Transfer to Bus Haeundae 2, Haeundae 7 or Haeundae 10 and get off at Haewoljeong Ipgu/Hillside Super (해월정 입구/힐사이드슈퍼) bus stop > Walk 180 meters
- Free parking available.
- Phone: +82 51-731-0022
- Instagram: @kitchendongbaek
Originally opened in 1992 as Dongbaek Art Center, Kitchen Dongbaek went through remodeling to turn into a restaurant later. When it comes to the layout and interior, the restaurant may seem somewhat unusual because it still keeps the original layout from the gallery. However, thanks to its uncommon configuration, the place offers a unique atmosphere and ample space between tables, unlike other restaurants. Besides, you can appreciate the paintings on the wall while you are enjoying your food.
Since the restaurant sits on the hillside of Dalmaji Hill, some tables in the restaurant offer a great view of Haeundae Beach and Dongbaekseom Island. However, those seats on the third floor are quite popular so you’d better make a reservation if you need window seats on the terrace.
If you are an avid fan of Korean TV shows, you would recognize the restaurant in one episode of the popular Korean TV Show, ‘The Dictionary of Useless Knowledge (알아두면 쓸데없는 신비한 잡학사전).’ One of its hosts visited Kitchen Dongbaek and praised the restaurant highly.
Kitchen Dongbaek is definitely one of the fine-dining Italian restaurants in Busan and its courses set you back between ₩42,000 and ₩122,000. If you want a la carte, it costs between ₩18,000 and ₩74,000. They roast their own coffee in-house and sell the beans at the restaurant as well. We had lunch courses including Caprese, soup, risotto, lamb racks, watermelon salad, braised mussel, pasta, and more.
Reviews of Kitchen Dongbaek
El Olive – Farm to Table Restaurant
Farm to Table Italian Restaurant
129-1, Jwasuyeong-ro, Suyeong-gu, Busan, South Korea
- Weekdays: 11:50 a.m. – 2 p.m (Lunch) 6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. (Dinner)
- Weekends: 11:50 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. (Lunch) 5:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. (Dinner)
- Bus: No. 115, get off at Suyeong Seongdang (수영성당/Suyeong Catholic Church) bus stop or No. 54, get off at Mangmi 2 dong (망미2동) bus stop
- Free parking available
- Phone: +82 51-752-7300
- Instagram: @vind.elolive
El Olive opened in 2010 when not many people were exploring upscale Italian restaurants in Busan. Even more interestingly, the restaurant settled in a neighborhood where no one expects to find an haute cuisine eatery. Although it may not be easy to locate the restaurant from the main streets, its glass-house is not easy to miss once you get there.
Not only El Olive pioneered fine Italian cuisine in Busan, but the restaurant is also one of the first eateries in Busan to bring the ‘Farm to Table’ concept to the table (no pun intended). The restaurant owns a farm of 2,900 square meters (31,000 square feet) in Yangsan-si. In order to cultivate the farm in an environment-friendly way, the owner installed a solar power system and uses only natural mineral water coming from 150 meters underground (490 feet).
The basic ingredients for the restaurant grow at the farm such as eggplants, onions, peppers, and mushrooms. In addition, they source seafood and other ingredients from local suppliers or ones in Gyeongsangnam-do. That way, they can keep their mission of providing customers with fresh local ingredients. Recently, El Olive has introduced Meal-Kit products as well.
My group and I ordered Lunch Sets including water dropwort pasta and ceviche, and other main dishes a la carte such as a lamb rack and rucola pizza. The price for courses run between ₩75,000 and ₩118,000 and entrees cost from ₩23,000 to ₩125,000.
Reviews of El Olive
Muumu (무우무) – Fusion Pizzeria
Italian Pizzeria with Fusion Twist
26, Centum dong-ro, Haeundae-gu, Busan, South Korea (Hanhwa Kkumegrin 1F A-dong 104ho)
11:30 a.m. – 12:00 a.m. (Break 3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. (weekdays), 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (weekends))
- Subway: Line 2 (Green Line), get off at Centum City station (센텀시티/206), Exit 4 > Walk 5 minutes (550 meter or 1800 feet)
- 2 hours free parking with purchase
Phone: +82 51-731-5799
Located in Centum City, Haeundae-gu, Muumu offers pizza, pasta, and other fusion-style menus. The restaurant has ample and well-spaced seating. If you visit the place with your kids, you can use school lunch trays for the children.
If you have taste buds for standard Italian cuisine, you can order traditional Italian dishes like pizza, pasta, and arancini. Do you care for a mix and match style? you can order something eccentric like Doenjang Pasta or Consigliere Tteokbokki. To complete your meal in a better mood, all entrée comes with a free cup of coffee or other drink. Don’t think of a banding machine coffee because it’s free. They serve real espresso.
We had Gamberetti Chili Pasta, Gorgonzola Pizza, and Garden Salad. Most of the main dishes are under ₩30,000, but the price of steaks goes up to ₩48,000.
Other Italian Restaurant in Busan
If you visit the Green City area (previously called Haeundae Sinsigaji), Chinnmeal is another option for Italian cuisine. You can read the post about the restaurant here: Chinnmeal.
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