Food & Drink

Authentic Latin Restaurants in Busan

As a Mexican living in South Korea, I often crave the flavours of Latin food. Sadly, Latin food is notoriously difficult to find. What’s more, most ‘Latin’ or ‘Mexican’ restaurants in Korea, actually sell American-style renditions. However, during my search, I have managed to find authentic Latin cuisine right here in Busan. In fact, these 3 restaurants are approved by both my Latino friends and I. So, let’s dig in…

Pendejo $

First up is Pendejo, a taqueria that recently opened at Gwangali Beach…‘Taqueria’ means ‘food stand.’ This should definitely be on your list if you’re after authentic Latin food at a more-than-reasonable price. They don’t have a large menu, but its about quality, not quantity. You can have Birria Tacos and Birria Quesadillas, both of which are traditional Mexican dishes.

The taco costs just 3,300 KRW and the quesadilla — or, quesabirria — costs 3,800 KRW. Furthermore, for 1,500 you can get a cup of consomme, the flavourful, spicy broth eaten alongside birria food. Wash down your meal with a cold soda in a glass bottle, or beer and tequila! My friend’s verdict on Pendejo: “If I could, I would marry this taco.” Need I say more?

Pendejo

Address: 25-2 Gwanganhaebyeon-ro 307beon-gil, Suyeong-gu, Busan
Operating Hours: 11:30am - 8:00pm* Mon, Tues, Thurs - Sun, closed Wed
Directions: From Busan station, take bus no. 41 to MBC Broadcasting stop. Turn right down the street by CU and walk for 2 min until you reach Pendejo.

** Break time 2:30pm - 5:00pm

Latin Party $$

This next restaurant is located near Kyungsung University. Latin Party’s menu features an exciting mix of different Latin dishes. The chefs here are Peruvian women, so you already know it is authentic. They’ve got the classic favourites like tacos, quesadillas and burritos, as well as regional specialties like flautas, salchipapas and even lomo saltado, native to Peru.

In fact, the lomo saltado was my personal favourite. For just 15,000 KRW, I highly recommend this dish. Additionally, the restaurant is the perfect setting for a relaxing meal with friends.

Latin Party

Address: Floor 7 13-1 Minraksubyeon-ro, Suyeong-gu, Busan
Operating Hours: 6:00pm - 3:00am Tues - Sun, closed Mon
Directions: From Busan Station, take bus no.41 to Minrakdong Alley Market stop. Turn around and turn left down the street next to the pharmacy. Keep straight, taking the 2nd left at the intersection and continuing for 5 min towards the beach. At Seongsam Clinic, bear right and then turn right again. At the CU, turn left again and Latin Party is in the same building as Heavenly Penthouse.

El Carnitas $$$

Also located at Gwangali Beach, El Carnitas is probably the most popular Mexican restaurant in Busan. If you’re after all the classic Mexican favourites, El Carnitas has got them all, from fajitas to margaritas! My personal favourites are their green sauce enchiladas. Furthermore, I love their salsa, of which you can have unlimited refills at their self-service bar!

I am yet to find a Latino friend who doesn’t love El Carnitas, however, we do agree it is quite expensive. Additionally, the restaurant can get a little crowded on the weekends, so best to go during the week. In the summer, you can enjoy sitting outside with a view of the whole beach.

El Carnitas

Address: 39 Gwangan-ro 62beon-gil, Suyeong-gu, Busan
Operating Hours: 11:30am - 10:00pm everyday
Directions: From Busan Station, take bus no. 41 to Seoho Hospital stop. Take the first right and turn left at the beach promenade. El Carnitas is next to Starbucks.