©tvN <Jinny’s Kitchen> main poster

Good morning!

Hey there! It’s 민지[Minji] from 유행[Yuhaeng], here to whet your appetite with some delicious news from Korea. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have a restaurant with Choi Woo-shik from <Parasite> and V from BTS as servers? Well, the hottest reality show in Korea at the moment, <Jinny’s Kitchen>, has managed to do just that! A restaurant serving Korean street food in a small town in Mexico, Jinny’s Kitchen has managed to win over the taste buds of both locals and tourists alike. Kimbap, tteokbokki, Korean-style corn dogs, and ramyeon are the name(s) of the game, along with Korean fried chicken as a recent addition. But watch the broadcast yourself, and you’ll see that the true star of the restaurant is the ramyeon, no matter what anyone says. In that sense, the topic of today’s newsletter is none other than 라면(ramyeon) itself, a dish Koreans eat an average of 70 times a year!

©tvN <Jinny’s Kitchen>

Screenshot of actor Park Seo-joon making ramyeon that will soon be served to customers

Just remember these three things!

Shin Ramyun, Chapagetti, Hot Chicken Flavor ramyeon (buldak-bokkeum-myeon)! As their names suggest, they represent ramyeon in spicy broth, ramyeon in jjajang sauce, and spicy stir-fried ramyeon, respectively. <Jinny’s Kitchen> serves ramyeon in spicy broth and stir-fried ramyeon, but I have a sneaking suspicion that ever since V started filming jjajang ramyeon mukbangs in his dorm every night, they’ve decided to include the variant in the restaurant’s menu as well.🤣 I can’t even count the number of times I’ve cooked ramyeon while watching this show.

©tvN <Jinny’s Kitchen>

Screenshot of BTS member V eating jjajang ramyeon in his dorm

If ramyeon’s this popular,

hasn’t it surpassed ‘trend’ to become ‘culture?’

Yep, you could definitely look at it that way. After all, ramyeon’s popularity is such that it’s considered Korea’s staple food, second only to rice. At the same time, it’s also true that whenever new ramyeon products are released – extremely spicy ramyeon, mild ramyeon, ramyeon with special ingredients – they’re consumed as new trends on their own. Out of these new varieties, Hot Chicken Flavor Ramyeon (buldak-bokkeum-myeon) is a special case: after its release in 2012, it enjoyed popularity so widespread that it’s now considered one of the representative categories of ramyeon.🥳 While ramyeon as a trend is continually led and revitalized by the release of new products, creative recipes and honey (perfect) combinations popularized on SNS and other online communities are equally instrumental. There’s actually a scene in <Jinny’s Kitchen> that’s become a topic of conversation lately, where the restaurant offers customers free yakgwa to indulge in after their experience with K-spicy food (after all, sweet and spicy is a honey combination!). I’m sure those who have read 유행[Yuhaeng]’s issue on ‘yakgwa’ will feel like they have an insider’s perspective when viewing the moment. <Jinny’s Kitchen> is actually the first Korean reality show to be available on Amazon Prime, so if you’re interested, head on over!

©tvN <Jinny’s Kitchen>

Screenshot of actor Choi Woo-shik as he warns(?) a customer ordering Hot Chicken Flavor Ramyeon (buldak-bokkeum-myeon) that it’s ‘very spicy’

The title of today's issue is a combination of a very Korean way of greeting others and a really famous Korean meme. ‘Have you eaten yet’ is often used as a greeting among Koreans who are reasonably close to each other. After spending time together or when hanging up the phone, it’s quite common for people to accompany their farewell with a ‘‘let’s have a meal together next time we meet’ or ‘make sure to eat well, even if your busy.’ And there’s a simple reason for this: being mindful of another’s meals is an important sign of concern and consideration in a relationship. ‘Want some ramyeon before you leave?’ is a line from the movie <One Fine Spring Day> that became famous for the exquisite way it stimulates the Korean sensibility, combining the freshness of excitement with the familiarity of a much-loved Korean soul food. Although twenty years have passed since the release of the movie, this line continues to appear today in various situations and content as a kind of idiom you use to slyly ask someone you’re interested in to ‘come in for a little while.’ What do you think? Doesn’t the title of today’s issue feel a lil’ different now that you know the context? See you next time, and remember to eat well!

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