In Hannam-Dong, a few steps away from UN Village, a well-established player in the Seoul coffee scene can be found: Under Pressure.
Naver maps link: Under Pressure – 언더프레셔
The two-story building is usually pretty busy and the few seats they have are quickly filled and not given up so fast – so come prepared to wait, or to take your coffee out with you. Under Pressure has a small selection of desserts and baked goods, too – and the smell of freshly baked things fills the air (a nice welcome!).
The coffee menu for hand-drip is really extensive. But the menu was more of an empty shell, since only 3 of the 9 listed single origins were actually available (I am consciously ignoring the 2 blends due to clear preference of single origin). We chose the Colombian and also the Nicaraguan, which was promised as a good alternative to the Ethiopian which wasn’t available.
The preparation was a bit of a mixed bag. Beans were not really weighed, but rather measured by volume in small tin boxes, as far as I was able to see. All componentes were heated up and filters were flushed to ensure no nasty paper taste dilutes the experience. Integrated scales and timers assisted at all times, but the pouring itself was very quick. In my humble opinion, bean/water-ratio and infusion time may have been fine, but instead of actually ‘dripping’ the water in multiple rounds, the majority went into the dripper straight away – not ideal (but a question of style and preference).
Regardless, the result was pleasant. Especially the Nicaraguan was a really flowery cup of coffee that we very much liked. The Colombian was promised to be ‘balanced’, and balanced it was. But in my view it was a little boring and didn’t have taste highlights.
All in all, Under Pressure is a solid recommendation for pour-over fans in the area, but in terms of technique potentially still has room to extract even more tastefulness out of the beans they offer. And they should probably not show beans they don’t actually have available – especially on a digital menu.