Dec 28, 2012

South Korea Year-End Celebrations

Ringing In 2013 South Korea Style

Written by: Geunjin Kim (from RPA's Seoul, South Korea Office)

How do you spend the last month of 2012? While December is always very busy with appointments, meeting friends and having parties (as we shared in our last RPA blog post about Bonenkai in Japan), in South Korea, we have our own diverse year-end party celebrations.

Enjoying concerts, theatre and musical events is very popular – especially among the women in their 20s here, with many restaurants satisfying both EYE and MOUTH with performances and wonderful meals. Great with me – killing two birds with one stone!

Apart from crowded downtown Seoul, more and more people are leaving the big city to venture countryside. Renting guest houses or cottages (also known as “pensions”) is popular among people who prefer staying with family or friends very quietly, often without alcohol!

And finally, as in many parts of the world now, Apps are often helpful to check what kinds of foods are served – and at what price – before booking a restaurant reservation during this busy celebration period. Below are typical meals for year-end party celebrations in South Korea. If you get the chance to try any, I’m sure you’d love them!

*Kimchi Sam-kyup-sal (Pork Belly with Kimchi) 
Sam-kyup-sal (pork belly) has been rated as the most delicious Korean food among foreigners … followed closely by Kimchi. So, with this dish, the best foods meet each other! Can you imagine how it tastes?

Pork Belly (with Kimchi to support it!)
Korean Pancake and Makgeolli
Makgeolli, known as “Korean rice wine”, is a milky-colored alcoholic beverage with a touch of sweetness. Rainy days this time of year make Korean people recall Makgeolli with Korean pancakes. Easy to prepare, you can cook Korean pancakes yourself (personally, I recommend adding ingredients like seafood, oysters or Kimchi). This dish is really healthy and a good late-night meal option.

Korean Pancake
Jokbal, tender and chewy, is a dish made of pigs’ feet. It tastes very good with soy or spicy sauce – as well as chilled vegetables. Jokbal is a perfect food to share as it tastes different, depending on which part people try. For added convenience, Jokbal is also available by delivery.  

So, while you may not be able to get to the South Korean countryside or take in some theatre in Seoul, you may want to consider some Korean food as options for celebrating your own year-end!

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