I finally got to try Baekmidang ice cream last weekend after first discovering its existence via instagram and I am so grateful! Baekmidang is an ice cream shop that makes soft serve ice cream from both organic cow’s milk and organic soy milk here in Seoul. They also serve their ice cream in either cones OR cups which means soy milk in a cup is dairy free and gluten free! Weeeee *que happy dance* Now, I’m lactose intolerant although I have chosen not to consume dairy products for a long time anyway. It’s been about 10 years I think since I stopped drinking milk. I’m very sensitive to dairy products but I will usually still be able to eat something that is processed in the same facility as dairy products and be okay. However, be aware that if you are a strict vegan and/or against consuming products from a company because they also produce products that use animal based ingredients then Baekmidang will obviously not be okay for you since they also make cow’s milk ice cream. If that doesn’t affect you then read on because Baekmidang ice cream is so delicious and has such a unique flavour!
At first glance you may think (as I did) what’s so special about vanilla soft serve? Well, when I think of soft serve I think of the kind of powdered fast food soft serve served in cheap wafer cones that costs under $1.00. Yuck. Sorry if that offends anyone who enjoys it but to try and compare that to organic, freshly made dairy free soft serve is like trying to compare a Civic to a Rolls Royce. They’re on different playing fields. And yes, soy milk ice cream is clearly made from soy but I follow my Naturopath’s advice when it comes to this, which is that soy can be a valuable source of protein but it is best to have the organic kind as there is a lot of chemicals typically involved in turning soy beans into tofu, soy milk, and other highly processed soy products. Even if it didn’t tick the organic box for me, I would still enjoy it on occasion because it’s dairy free ice cream in Korea and the fact that it’s organic turns it into even more of a rarity.
*Update: The staff at their head office confirmed that the ice cream contains an additive that is derived from dairy, so again if you avoid dairy or animal products %100, I would not eat this ice cream. I am allergic to dairy and can consume the plain kind just fine, but I can’t speak to other’s sensitivities to it. Again it could also be cross contaminated so please make your own decision about whether to have it or not 🙂
The ice cream is thick, creamy, rich and full of flavour. It stands on it’s own very well which is why it’s served in a seemingly plain fashion but if the shoe fits wear it! It doesn’t need flash and I think the image Baekmidang presents is really represented in the product itself. Clean, simple, elegant, quality. After trying it I understood the queue of about 15 people waiting in line ahead of us and after finishing my cup I was actually full! It’s like drinking a large glass of organic soy milk which is what it should feel like if you’re eating good quality ice cream that is actually made from fresh ingredients. Kudos, Baekmidang. I will be back for many more in one of your over five locations in Seoul, including Apgujeong Hyundai Department Store, Pangyo Hyundai Department Store, Yeongduengpo Times Square, and Hyundai Department store in Coex. According to their instagram it looks like they also may have locations in Gwanghwamun and Dongdaemun but I’m not %100 sure about those ones. At the time I’m posting this Baekmidang doesn’t have a functioning website either unfortunately. If you have been to those locations by any chance, please comment below!
Some photos from the Apgujeong Hyundai location:
Directions to Apgujeong Hyundai location: Take exit 6 from Apgujeong station to enter the department store. Baekmidang is on the 5th floor.
Directions to Pangyo Hyundai location: Take exit 2 from Pangyo station and turn right at the main street. The department store will be on your right. They have a booth on B1 level as well, but they sell their icecream upstairs on the 9th floor.
If you try it, comment below and let me know what you think! 🙂