#K-Food: Is This Actually a Dessert?

by Anna Do

We've spotted a new type of dessert in Korea, where fashion and art are uniquely merging together. It’s a new type of fusion and it’s one that’s not just with the flavours or cuisine. Instead, these cafes serve the most creative confection from the menu to the display and even the interior design. This gives you a whole new experience of dessert for all your senses, just like you’re visiting an art exhibition.

Nudake |  50 Apgujeong-ro 46-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul

Gentle Monster, a famous Korean sunglasses brand, brings its eccentric style to the Korean cafe industry with the opening of NUDAKE, short for “New Different Cake” (NU-DA-KE). As the name suggests, this dessert place presents cake in a whole different way, by displaying it like a work of art. Items are shown with an information card forefront making the visual even more spectacular! Not only is it visually appealing, but the ingredients are also one of a kind. You’ll find carrot cake presented with raw cauliflower and an asparagus topping, bread in the form of a face, and even a chocolate and cheddar burger. Instead of going to an art museum, NUDAKE is the place to visit instead to elevate all your senses! 

Tongue Planet | 2nd floor, 82 Seongsui-ro, Seongdong-gu, Seoul

Have you ever been to a themed cafe before? You’ll find countless cafes with all sorts of different themes in Korea giving you all the entertainment you could ever need! However, who knew there would be a tongue-themed cafe making waves in Korea 👅? Tongue Planet may seem like a unique concept with everything being themed around the tongue from the decor to the coffee and the desserts. But with it being presented in different shapes, colours, and textures, it makes it a fun escape. And of course, with all these cafes, you won’t just find the food interesting but the interior too! The Tongue Planet cafe’s eccentric interior is what completes it with unconventionally shaped lights, even cooler art displays, and vibrant colours that for sure stand out. Earlier this year, Tongue Planet Cafe even held a collaboration with the luxury accessories brand, Mulberry, through an interpretation of Mulberry’s “Softie” bag collection. The cake looks so realistic that it’s hard to tell which one is the actual bag 😮 A playful and quirky aesthetic, this place will give you all the creative inspiration! 

Un’icon | 395-40 Dangsandong 3(sam)-ga, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul

One place to check out during the warm seasons in Korea has to be  Un’icon coffee! You’ll find drinks packaged in perfume bottles that not only smell good but taste delicious too! Each “Tea Perfume” features fruity flavours with beautiful colours to go with it too 😍 For sure an aesthetically pleasing Insta-story to upload! Un’icon even elevates it's summer offerings by pairing each drink with a ton-sur-ton (colours with matching tones) dessert. A pair that visually goes well together but with flavours that enhance each other too! A must-eat is their abundance of fruity desserts! You’ll find every treat from cakes, tarts, and even waffles made all topped with seasonal Korean fruits and fresh cream. With all their bright colours in the menu items, it’s a cool contrast from the dark monochromatic interior design that makes the food stand out even more! 

Although prices are on the expensive side, these cafes don’t just offer incredibly executed dessert but give you all the visuals too, which to me makes it all worth it 👏🏻 Definitely unique cafes that you won’t find in New Zealand…yet! Till then, I'm going to get my favourite treat - an almond croissant 🥐

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