Located in a back street down the hill from Itaewon market, Braai Republic is casual, friendly and fun unless you’re vegetarian.
If you love a barbecue (or Braai as they are known in South Africa) then you’ll love this place. The kitchen occupies 30% of the interior. A massive gas grill and large benches are installed to prepare and barbecue homemade sausage, lamb racks, bangers and pies each afternoon.
Prices here are cheap, with lamb racks going for 6,000won each and a 500ml carafe of wine for only 9,000won!
The meat and sausage set for 30,000 is good for two people to share. Two racks of lamb, two homemade bangers, carrot coleslaw, spinach and mashed potatoes with herbs. The lamb is cooked just right, a little juicy in the center with a smokey, crunchy outer layer thanks to being chargrilled on a barbecue. The bangers are spicy and work well with the off-dry 2011 Glenwood colombard/muscat wine from South Africa.
The wine is well balanced with tropical fruit, crisp capsicums, and a spicy finish with good lift.
For the lamb, the 2009 Glenwood shiraz works adequately. There are chocolate and smokey aromas and a solid fruit core. It’s quite rich and opulent but balanced. The tannins are supple and earthy. Quite impressive complexity given this comes out of plastic bag under pressure. This is the best bag in a box wine I’ve tasted in Korea.
According to the winery, the wine is made from 11 year old vines and underwent malolactic fermentation in barrel then was matured for 18 months in second-fill French oak.
The meat pies at Braai are a proper meal, thick pastry, large chunks of meat and spicy gravy, well balanced and filling. They do lamb, mixed meat, steak and lamb curry. The pie selection varies each day as they are made on-site each afternoon, so if you’re after a certain pie call ahead to confirm they have it, or ask them to make it. Pies go for 7,000 each.
For dessert the Amarula cream cheese cake is a nice indulgence. It’s made by a local South African lady and is rich, balanced and delicous.
Sausages and biltong (cured meat) are hand made and can also be ordered online and delivered to your home.
Braai Republic is relaxed and casual with owner Chris Truter interacting with guests and telling jokes. It makes for a great atmosphere but Korean customers may find essentials of service lacking. Tables are not provided with wet handtowels or pickles; two basic things that Korean diners expect at a restaurant.
If you like a BBQ and are craving meat and wine at reasonable prices, Braai Republic is worth checking out.
Ph 070 8879 1967