What to do in Jeonju: Eat Chocopies!

Jeonju’s main draws are the hanok village and the food. One of the popular foods is the chocopie! If you don’t already know, the chocopie is marshmallow filling surrounded by two pieces of cake dipped in chocolate. What’s not to love about that? In Jeonju there is one bakery that apparently is super famous for chocopies so we knew we had to put these chocopies to the test. PNB bakery is the go to for chocopies… at least that is according to our Korean friend Eunji. There are numerous other bakeries also selling chocopies but apparently we were holding out for the chocopies of PNB. It was pretty crazy how while we were on our quest of chocopies how many people we spotted walking around the hanok village with giant bags of chocopies…taunting us for our lack of marshmallow chocolaty goodness.

Now there is a PNB bakery within the hanok village, somehow we missed this fact and trekked a little ways away from the hanok village to the larger PNB. A plus of this walk was that the lines were much shorter in this bakery than at the tiny PNB in the hanok village.

This is the PNB that is in the hanok village

This is the PNB that is in the hanok village…those orange boxes? They were once filled with chocopies.

Inside PNB is much like any other bakery…various breads and pastries and cakes are for sale. They even have a small basket right up front with the individually packaged chocopies for sale. But don’t buy these, if you are here you’re a committed chocopie fan and you should buy at least one box.

We have found it!

We have found it!

Standard bakery fare

Standard bakery fare

In the back of the bakery you will see some ladies packaging up the infamous chocopies. Just looking at the amount of baking dishes stacked up I can only imagine how many chocopies get sold here each week…

Ladies packaging up the chocopies by hand.

Ladies packaging up the chocopies by hand.

These baking trays house the chocopies waiting to be packaged up

These baking trays house the chocopies waiting to be packaged up

I’m sure PNB has quite an array of delicious baked goods ut, let’s be honest no one is there for the croissants, they want the chocopies…which they have already pre-boxed (10/box) behind the cash register.

The good people at PNB know to pre-package the chocopies...makes the line go by much quicker

The good people at PNB know to pre-package the chocopies…makes the line go by much quicker

Success!!! I am now the proud owner of two boxes of chocopies!

Success!!! I am now the proud owner of two boxes of chocopies!

And FINALLY!!! How did it taste???? Ok ok…a little backstory to prep you for my reaction. I have only ever had the Orion chocopies….which are good, but I always feel like I’m kind of eating styrofoam, in a good way. After walking around for the good portion of an hour looking for the PNB chocopies I can tell you my first bite was….disappointing…I think Eunji said it best shorty after we started eating them when she said “It’s not THAT good.” I guess after our search and seeing the hundreds of PNB bags in the hanok village we had built them up in our minds to be amazing tasting. And they weren’t, which isn’t to say they were bad…they were just good.

Getting ready to take the first bite!

Getting ready to take the first bite!

Now, this is just my own opinion and I cannot imagine I am in the majority here since clearly these chocopies are a top seller in Jeonju. I think it is also worth mentioning the differences between say an Orion chocopie (that you can buy at any convenience store) and the PNB chcopie. The Orion chocopie (the first chocopie I ever ate so to me it will always be the quintessential chocopie) has two pieces of cake (kind of a cross between a thicker cookie and cake consistency) which house marshmallow filling (this is what reminds me of styrofoam) and is covered in chocolate. The PNB chocopie starts off with two pieces of cake (that are kind of a cross between cake and brownie) with cream, strawberry jam and nuts in the middle and then the edges are dipped in chocolate. I guess the fact that I am not a fan of strawberries or nuts could be part of the reason I didn’t love the PNB chocopie. Regardless I think that any trip to Jeonju would not be complete without a sampling of the local chocopies…..just don’t expect them to change your life (like I did).

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