From the hopping music to flashing lights, Blue Ketchup (블루게찹) appears to be the hottest nightclub in Seoul. Instead of dancing however, guys and girls get together to dine and drink.
Immediately upon entrance, my friends and I noticed suspicious glances being thrown all over the room. We observed the tables around us, shrugged, and ordered some drinks and dishes. Strangely however, our waiter kept trying to snatch our menu away before we were finished. As our food and drink arrived one by one, we talked and laughed the night away, high from the blaring music and flashing lights. The thrilling music, romantic ambiance, and excellent food created the perfect experience. We noticed sneaky whispers from the tables around us and figured it was because we were the only foreigners.
A couple of guys from the table to our right made eye contact with us and handed the waiter a card. Suddenly, a couple of young Korean men invited themselves to our table. One of them said he was a doctor, but looked a bit young. We made small talk and joked with them that we were tourists and leaving Korea tomorrow. Meanwhile, the odd guys from the table to our right stared at us, even shuffling seats to get a better look. Apparently upset, they stood up and left the restaurant. Back at our table, rather than exchanging numbers, our entertaining conversation ended in a gracious goodbye.
Back in our suite, my friends and I were quite pleased with our discovery of the coolest restaurant in town. While browsing other locations for next time, we discovered that we were actually at a booking club! At Blue Ketchup, guests can send Cupid Cards for $1 to those they are interested in talking with. If the invitation is accepted, the potential partners get together to talk, eat, or drink. For those who feel a simple invitation isn't enough, the club features a 'booking menu' offering a $5 Cupid Cocktail, $10 Cupid Fondue, and a $29 Cupid Absolut Vodka. Apparently, since we all ordered food and drink, guests were gossiping about our "popularity" and the guys to our right were inspecting the only men we "accepted" to our table. By the time they had decided to send us a Cupid Card, it was too late!
1318-2 Seochu-gu, Seocho-dong, Seoul
Hours: Monday-Thursday 5:00pm-2:00am, Friday-Saturday 5:00pm-5:00am, Sunday 5:00pm-12:00am
Blue Ketchup operates many locations across South Korea.