Abalone from Wando

Abalone from Wando

Nestled amidst the pristine waters off the Korean coast lies Wando Island (완도), a culinary haven celebrated for its bountiful seafood offerings, from flatfish to an array of seaweeds. At its heart lies the revered abalone—an oceanic jewel adored for its exquisite flavor and nutritional value.

Abalone, a cherished marine delicacy renowned for its tender flesh and distinct taste, holds a prestigious status in the culinary world. Revered for its nuanced flavor profile and healthful properties, this oceanic gem transcends borders, captivating palates across diverse culinary traditions. With its luxuriously smooth texture and subtle oceanic nuances, abalone imparts a touch of culinary elegance to every dish it graces.


With just 152 restaurants worldwide boasting three Michelin stars, attaining the prestigious "exceptional cuisine worth a special journey" status is no small feat. At Mosu Seoul, Korea's sole three-starred establishment, the Abalone Taco reigns supreme on the menu. Chef Sungjae Ahn, with a profound reverence for Wando abalone, seamlessly incorporates this prized ingredient into his culinary repertoire. From his pioneering days at Mosu San Francisco to the present, abalone remains a steadfast muse, infusing his menus with unparalleled versatility and quality.

Abalone taco at Mosu Seoul, a Michelin-starred restaurant

*Photo by Travels for Stars

Wando abalone, with its distinctive flavor profile and tantalizing texture, serves as a beacon of culinary excellence, captivating discerning palates and inspiring epicurean adventures worldwide. According to Chef Ahn, each bite of the Abalone Taco is a testament to coastal splendor and gastronomic innovation.

What makes Wando a special locale for abalone? The island's abundant supply of gim, kelp, and miyeok plays a significant role. With a seabed composed of granite layers, Wando's shallow waters are said to enhance the flavor of its prized seafood bounty. The island also benefits from its geographical location, which shields it from the worst impacts of typhoons.

Abalone boasts a plethora of health benefits, making it a prized addition to any diet. Rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals such as iron, selenium, and vitamin E, abalone is essential for maintaining optimal health. With its low levels of unhealthy fats and cholesterol, abalone is a wise choice for promoting heart health and reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Its high omega-3 fatty acid content, particularly EPA and DHA, offers anti-inflammatory benefits, supporting joint health and potentially mitigating the risk of chronic diseases. Additionally, abalone's antioxidant properties, including selenium and vitamin E, help combat oxidative stress, promoting overall well-being and vitality.

*Photo by Wando Mom

Abalone pricing is primarily determined by size and weight, with larger specimens fetching higher prices. Kim’C Market, renowned for its selection of epicurean delights, typically offers 100g abalones, known as "10-count-in-1kg," prized for their ideal size and tenderness, favored by discerning epicures and chefs alike.

With Kim’C Market's curated list of 20 seasonal abalone recipes, culinary enthusiasts can embark on a gastronomic journey year-round, crafting delectable dishes for themselves and their loved ones.

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