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Last Friday night I ventured to HBC’s latest and greatest acquisition XII. That’s twelve in roman numerals for those that skipped that class in school. Armed with a motley assortment of my closest friends we hit the bar hard.

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Located at the end of the main street of Haebangchon, it’s a blink and miss it affair. What adds to the allure of the bar is that it only has seating for a precious few, 12 to be exact, hence the name. With its fake secret door you have to slide the panel to the left of the fake door to gain entry.

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The bar has a whisky collection to rival no other. I’m no connoisseur myself but I recognised plenty of well respected names on the menu. This one is a Yamazaki 12 Year old (15,000). It also came with a disco ball shaped ice cube which I thought was ingenious.

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After a good old read of the amply sized menu I ordered my good old friend the Moscow Mule (15,000). Served in a traditional copper cup with a a large wedge of lime and a cinnamon stick. I didn’t know if I would find one to rival the one at Southside, but this one certainly gives it a run for it’s money. Though the fact that the Southside ones are only 10,000 probably gives them the edge for me.

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My best friend Sue ordered her very first Caipirinha cocktail (14,000). She asked for it extra strong which I think might have soured a bit, as the balance of lime, sugar, and rum was slightly out. I used to drink an abundance of these in youth so it was good to at least see it on the menu. I’d also be interested in trying their mojitos.

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We also got a Manhattan (14,000), strong enough to put hairs on your chest. A well made drink if ever there was one. The exact balance of flavours of this one elude me somewhat, as I was three sheets to the wind by the time I gave it a go. But my drinking companions assured me it was very good indeed.

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I definitely plan to go to XII again soon, and not just because its stumbling distance from my home. The drinks aren’t cheap with the average being around 15,000, but they are well made and worthy of the price tag. The bar also has a warm and inviting atmosphere. It’s definitely the place to be seen drinking in the ‘chon. It really classes up the joint, and there wasn’t a selfie stick to be seen anywhere in the room.

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XII is located at 45-1, Yongsan 2-ga, , Yongsan-dong, Seoul. To get there take a train to Noksapyeong station and come out of exit 2. Walk straight to the end of the road, then bare left and walk along the road with the kimchi pots. Keep walking straight past Bonny’s, Phillies, and Casablanca, etc., until you reach the end of the road. XII is on the right hand side across from Paris Baguette.  For more information you can call them on 010-9419-9693 or check out their facebook page.

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