I just scanned through a fluff piece in the Dong-a Ilbo where they interviewed hotel chefs on what Korean food needs to do to globalize. It’s a theme that’s recycled each month in the papers. I agreed with Chef Shim Chang-shik of the Grand Ambassador Seoul that Korean food needs to stay true to itself.
Again, the cringe-inducing catchword “well-being” found its way into the article. Yes, that works for Japan and maybe certain parts of California. But the rest of the world still cares about taste before green tea powder.
Needing to create a world-class chef to make Korean food popular? I’m still on the fence with that. I still think that Korean food is gaining popularity without–in spite of–the government’s efforts. Knowing the food du jour they’re trying to promote, I wouldn’t be surprised if the next one is dried squid.
Supposedly the government has started a program to artificially create a famous chef. Yes, we’re taking the JYP-Wondergirls approach. And this program lasts for two to three months. That’s it. Not even a college trimester.
And what aspiring young chefs are taking this course?
Mostly “‘CEOs and corporate executives,'” according to a person quoted in the article, who “struggle with the program’s purpose.”
I think we just missed a golden reality show opportunity.