I probably whisper the phrase “I miss Korea” to myself somewhere between three and three hundred times a day. There were so many things I loved including the people, the cities, the technology, the food, and the overall vibe. So, I was pretty excited to find an unexpected piece of Korea right outside downtown Atlanta.
I thought I’d be able to find some Korean food in Atlanta, and a Google search for Korean restaurants led me to also find a k-pop store. That was my first stop. I was totally unprepared to take the exit for Doraville and find that almost all of the businesses had signs written in Korean. I looked back and forth in amazement like I had somehow exited Atlanta and entered another universe or at least another country.
The k-pop store is called K-pop Store in the USA, and it was like a dream. I think I spent an hour and a half looking around at all of the albums and merch they had for all of my favorite artists. I was there so long that the people at the store started asking me about my favorite artists, my bias, if I have tried Korean food, and if I can speak any Korean. If you like an artist not popular in the US, it can be difficult to get any of their albums. The selection at the store, however, was outstanding. You can find plenty of BTS albums and merch (which I did), but you can also find IU and Dreamcatcher. Also, there was so much Wanna One that I felt like I was back in Korea.
I was hungry after all of that shopping, so I went to find a cafe that a friend suggested. If you ever get a chance to visit Sweet Hut Bakery and Cafe, I highly recommend it. First, walk in and pick up a try and tongs. You’ll walk around looking at all kinds of Asian breads filled with meats or sweets. I filled my basket so that I could try a little bit of everything that sounded good. Next, get in line and wait to pay for your baked goods while reviewing the selection of teas. The tea selections are just as delicious, and almost anything can be made either hot or cold and with bobba. Finally, grab a seat an enjoy your treat. It’s so good that you’ll want to get something for the road if you didn’t already buy yourself six different things like I did.
If you are visiting Atlanta and want to get a taste of Korea without the long flight across the Pacific Ocean, stop in Doraville. The suburb is about 30 minutes outside of downtown Atlanta and is worth the side trek.