My first full day in Daegu was exhausting. Mostly because we spent the entire day downtown shopping. Summer has snuck up on me and I’ve begun to look a bit like a cartoon character. With a limited wardrobe and wearing the same thing every week. It helps that my friend loves shopping so she had plenty of places for us to go through during our morning and afternoon. We were so determined to find things that were business professional, light weight and appopriate for teaching elementary in Korea that we lost track of time and didn’t end up stopping for lunch until 3pm. Where we both collapsed into chairs at a handmade riceball and beef over rice shop. I ordered udon. We tried a little bit more shopping afterwards but were pretty burnt out and just utterly exhausted. So we made our way to the cafe I’d been telling my friend about. Hogsmede wasn’t close to where we were and required about an hour bus ride to get to since it’s technically in Gyeongsan-si at 호그스미드 카페, 경북 경산시 성암로12길 36-11 . (It took 2 buses at least) But I’d say it was worth it.
Out of all the Harry Potter themed cafes or places I’ve been to in Korea so far (Muggles Cafe, Bulldogs) this one is the best. From their menu being a book that looks like a little spells book and the back of which is filled with guest comments to the cozy common room feel (a bit dungeon-y) to the fact that the menu actually has Harry Potter themed items. Muggles Cafe rocked the theme but not the menu and Bulldogs only had butterbeer. Hogsmeade outpaces both. Not to mention their take on butterbeer is physics defying magical in itself.
At first when we saw it we were a bit concerned it was closed. The blinds were shut and the place looked dark. But it was the ambiance. Hogsmede is open late from 11am until midnight. It was quiet when we went in, music playing in the background soft enough for us to chat. We picked some cozy seats by one of the windows and as soon as we made our seat selection one of the staff memembers came over to light the candle at our table. You can see which seats are the most popular to sit at by how small the candles are.
It seems the seats by the faux fireplace are the most popular. We flipped through the menu of coffees, ades, smoothies, teas and frappuccinos in search of butter beer. Then through the dessert menu which includes chocolate frogs and pumpkin tartes. I ordered butter beer and a pumpkin tarte while my friend ordered a tiramisu to go with her butterbeer.
While we waited we wandered around enjoying all the Harry Potter things. Brooms, robes, all house scarves, the sorting hat, to even a wizarding chess set. It was nice to see things from all houses represented. I was a bit surprised though when our food came. Everything I ordered was huge. My tarte was gigantic and the butterbeer took me about an hour to finish. Mind you I was focusing mostly on the tarte and a bit busy talking but it took quite awhile.
The butterbeer tasted like sprite or cider (Korea’s version of clear soda) and on top was this intense foam that just wouldn’t end. It had a couple nuts on it and a nice carmel flavor but no matter how intensly we stirred it just seemed to grow. It was so strange and kind of funny to watch my friend try and frantically stir it away. I also enjoyed my tarte with it’s chocolate and honey drizzle. It seems the owner also has plans to expand the menu in the future to include more fun things like polyjuice potions. Hogsmeade was a lot of fun to visit and just hang out. It was quiet and probably a really good place to study or even sit and read one of the books they have on the shelves.