Well everyone here is a post that is not in the chronological order according to the time and place of where I ate, but here is a review nonetheless of the Lotteria in Geumsan. Yesterday I had a nice Don Ggass at the Kimbab house, and I took some covert video of the experience, however I also couldn't find the power chord to my video camera and as the battery died, I couldn't transfer the video from the camera to my new computer so today instead of reviewing the Kimbab house I will review the Geumsan Lotteria.
Now the Geumsan Lotteria is a rather new venue. Last summer in the location where the Lotteria is, there was a soon dubu place called "Go Ga Nae," (Go family ........Nae) Go Ga Nae, made many fine things like a really nice dol sot bibim bab that came with many sides of Kimchi, Gak Ddooki, and a lukewarm bowl of seaweed and tofu. The drawback to the place was that it was kind of dirty, and the bathroom was kind of scary. (The faucet on the sink was attached to the pipes with a mountain of electrical tape.) Luckily for me I never got sick the three times that I ate there, and the last time I went, I found the place abandoned.
Then the Lotte Company came by, fixed the place up and turned it into a Lotteria. I was there for the opening and was treated to seeing the dancing girls that christen grand openings with some undulations to popular music in neon colored clothing. That day, like today, I had a Paprika Bacon Beef Burger. Apparently a paprika is a bell pepper (I think I may have been told one time that "paprika," is the word commonly used in Australia to describe Bell Peppers, the word is generally used in my parts to talk about the spice paprika, the stuff that people put on deviled eggs. I'm also not sure that I believe that bell peppers are called paprikas in Australia I stand to be corrected though.)
My dining experience today treated me to all of the wonders of a fine dinning experience, yet left me confused. I found it to be fine because at 12:30 in the afternoon the only customers were me and two motherly looking women eating chicken sandwiches. And that is what left me confused as well. I fear for the future of this Lotteria because during a peak lunch time, there were only three customers in the establishment!!! This is only after being in business for three months.
Now both Monday and Tuesday I went to the lake in Geumsan to enjoy some kimbab, and kimbab fried rice that my wife made for me, and I stopped by the lotteria on the way back to have cappuccino on Monday, and a Latte on Tuesday during my walk back to school. On both of those days, during a prime lunch period, the Lotteria was virtually empty as well. It really makes me wonder if this place has any hopes of surviving. I have been told that in the days of old there was another Lotteria that went out of business where a GS25 stands now.
That is something that I find interesting about Lotteria. That is that Lotteria branches go out of business. I think the McDonalds has a fail safe mechanism that ensures that it's branches stay in business, there is also a lot of market research that goes into an area in order to be sure that an area sees an adequate amount of traffic before the shovels even go into the ground. I think that can be seen in the relative numbers of McDonalds and Lotterias in Jinju. Jinju only has two McDonalds branches compared to Lotteria's eight.
The scant amount of people, though, is a definite plus in my book when it comes to lotterias. I have found that lotteria French fries are frequently cold. At the Jinju, Geumsan branch though, my meal was cooked to order, and I enjoyed some nice, hot fries. The same could be said for the burger too. The burger was cooked to order with fresh vegetables and was nice and warm. Comparing this to a much more profitable Lotteria next to Jinju's city hall, and also nearby a girl's middle and highschool where I can expect to be bothered by students of all variety wanting to know what my name is where I am from. (I usually tell them I am 구준표 from 강워도) Also at the city hall branch I can usually expect uncooked and soggy fries.
So to anyone who is out for a hike on any of the two peaks of wol ah san, and fancies having a prompt and fresh ticket to an upset stomach, please visit the Geumsan Lotteria (seriously before the place goes under, I give it five months.)