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Melting Monkey in Gyeongnidan

Words and shots by Grace Yu

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Grilled Cheese on a Pedestal

Sometimes, nothing can beat the delicious comfort of a grilled cheese sandwich. The mere mention of this simple pleasure is often enough to make mouths water. Now, in a little shop up an alleyway near Gyeongnidan road, a dedicated troupe is working to perfect this timeless classic. Inspired by his trips to America, the owner of this establishment is committed to bringing a combination of comfort and delicacy to the masses.

At Melting Monkey, grilled cheeses are made using a mix of four different cheeses (Swiss, Cheddar, Mozzarella, and Emmental) along a blend of chopped onions, leeks, and garlic stuffed between slices of sourdough bread. These sandwiches are then carefully pressed in a panini grill until the bread is toasty and melted cheese oozes out from the middle. The finished product is everything a great grilled cheese should be – crisp on the outside before yielding a savory gooey center. There are two choices of sandwiches here. First, we have the classic, which is then followed by an amped up “B+” version that includes bacon and jalapeño pieces. Optional but equally addicting, are the Monkey Fries, which are seasoned with secret spices before being fried to a golden crispness.

In this little food establishment, seating options are limited. You can either stand by a little counter inside or find a nice spot outside to enjoy your sandwich. Luckily, there is abundant sidewalk and infrequent car traffic for those who enjoy sitting outdoors. Open from 11 am – 10 pm, 7 days a week.

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Location: Seoul, Yongsan-gu, Itaewon-dong, 336-1

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