There is a jaecheop (small freshwater marsh clams) street in Samnak-dong where restaurants used to collect the little clams at the Nakdonggang River clustered around the Sasang Industrial Complex.
While Nakdonggang jaecheop has since disappeared, some of these restaurants still offer this uniquely Busan dish.
Hadong Jaecheopguk, points to its 33-year history with timeworn tables and numerous picture frames featuring celebrities who have praised their food.
A pungent fishy scent might deter newcomers. However, jaecheop is rich in calcium and iron and blends beautifully in a rich soup. Hadong Jaecheopguk, in particular, is faithful to the origins of this dish, which runs 6,000 won a person.
They use only natural, fleshy jaecheop from the Seomjingang River in Jeollanam-do (province) that is finished with chopped chives atop the milky-white broth. Wild vegetables and sauce are provided to mix with rice, as well.
Like many older Korean restaurants, Hadong Jaecheopguk’s menu is sparse, so sparse there’s no need to order. As soon as your server knows how many customers are at the table, the meal is served.
In addition to the cooked version, jaecheophoe (raw clam, 10,000 won) is also popular among customers. Chewy jaecheop harmonize well with crunchy cucumbers and carrots and a not-too-spicy sauce agrees with just about everybody.
Address: 33, Nakdong-daero 1518beon-gil, Sasang-gu
How to get there: Mora Station (Metro line 2), exit 3. Walk straight. Turn left at the T-station alley and walk for five minutes. The restaurant is located across from a public parking lot.
Hours: 6 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. daily.