The quest for Natto

By greenteapanda

October 3, 2007

Category: Shopping

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Natto is available in Seoul. However, the only place I have seen it is in the B1 grocery section of the Lotte Department store. The cheapest 3-pack of Natto costs 3,700 won, or almost 5x the cost it would be in Japan.

I went to Ichon during the Chuseok period, which is supposed to be a Japantown of sorts in Seoul. Not many shops were Japanese, and those that were did not seem to have Natto. Perhaps I should go back on a different day, since some Japanese residents there implied in a newspaper article all the important things from Japan were available in the markets there.

In the Namdaemun area, some stairs in the market go down to basements lead to areas with some foreign foods. It is good to know I can get Japanese sesame salad dressing at cheap prices, and miso paste as well. But no Natto. Lots of sub-par foreign foods like regular Hershey’s Chocolate. The market does have Lotte and Meiji dark chocolates available, but those seem to have less cocoa content than their labels claim (up to 99%).

My shopping in Itaewon during the Chuseok period also did not turn up places selling Natto, though I have not tried a market yet that apparently has a wide range of foreign goods. I shall see.

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