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Tranquility and Coffee at Dajung Café in Tongdosa

In these stressful times, it's nice to be able to find a peaceful place to just relax and enjoy a cup of coffee with the beauty of nature around you.

That’s why when I was enjoying the late summer weather at one of Korea’s largest and most famous Buddhist Temples, Tongdosa, I was very happy to be able to enjoy some coffee inside the area at Dajung Café.

Tongdosa is in the southern portion of the country. While there are parking lots close to the temple, the walk from the outside gate,

along an idyllic river,

and giant, ancient, trees, makes for me a much better way to get to the main buildings.

After looking at the temple, and some of the lovely flowers that they have planted,

I found myself outside Dajung Café and felt the urge to have some coffee.

Dajung Café is built in a traditional style, which is fitting given its location, and there is lots of wonderful, warm wood inside the building.

I took a look at the menu, and after a minute decided to try a Vanilla Latte and a plain black coffee (Americano).

After the barista had finished the order, I took a quick photo and headed outside to enjoy my coffee.

I found a picnic style table right next to the river, and at that moment I couldn’t imagine a better place to enjoy my coffees.

The first one I tried was the Americano. It was quite bitter, with a strong aftertaste, and a lot of acidity. There was a slight chocolate flavor to the coffee as well.

Next up was the Vanilla Latte. This was a bit sweeter, but again had bitter notes to it, much more so than many lattes will have in Korea. The vanilla flavor was quite subdued and didn’t leave as much of an aftertaste as this type of drink usually does. It also was not very sweet, which might be a very good thing as many vanilla lattes here tend to be on the very sweet side.

Dajung Café does a nice dark cup of coffee, and I think the beans are definitely dark roasted. The setting on the other hand, especially in late summer or autumn is absolutely stunning. The coffee ends up being just a wonderful bonus when you are visiting Tongdosa.

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