From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival

FoodFrom Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival
From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival
Photography by Ruby Hyder

By Raza Syed

South Korea is a land of vibrant colours, cultural events, and festive excitement. As the autumn leaves turn brilliant shades of red and gold, the country comes alive with numerous food festivals that offer a unique glimpse into Korean traditions, arts, and culinary delights.From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival

In a bid to showcase these rich traditions, a team of expert Korean chefs recently arrived in London to participate in the UK’s leading food festival, ‘Taste London 2024’. This annual festival, held every June, features renowned chefs from across the globe who present their native cuisines, offering festival-goers a diverse and delectable culinary experience.From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival

The Taste of London Food Festival provides a delightful opportunity for food enthusiasts and businesses alike to indulge in an extraordinary celebration of gastronomy. Attendees can savour an array of exquisite dishes from esteemed restaurants not only from London but also from around the world, all conveniently gathered in one location. This event is a haven for those eager to explore the flavours of different cultures, with chefs passionately serving their country’s cuisine, making it a truly international feast.From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival

This week, thousands of foodies flocked to Regent’s Park London to experience the best of Korean cuisine and culture at the London Food Festival.From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival

Returning for its second appearance at the event, the Taste of Korean Culture pavilion is an initiative supported by the Korean Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

“Food is the first introduction to culture and it’s how you consume a culture, how you understand the people,” Mr. Kwon, Jae Hwan, The Team Manager of Korea Foundation for Culture and Ethics(KFCE), told London Post. “I love the curiosity I see when we have a stand. People are very curious to try … they want to learn.”From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival

Mr. Kwon explained that the initiative aims “to showcase, as Korean people, our unique and diverse culinary heritage.”

With over 4,000 visitors in the first two days, Ms. Kim do-eun, Executive Chef, expressed her delight at the turnout. “We were here last year and we loved the feel, we loved how warm and welcoming everyone was.”

Following the success of 2023, this year’s Korean pavilion is larger and has been serving a variety of national and regional dishes since the festival began on Wednesday.

From Andong to London: Korean culinary heritage shines at taste festival
Photography by Ruby Hyder

Visitors to the pavilion can also enjoy live cooking demonstrations, participate in a Korean wine ceremony, or tasty snacks.

The pavilion also aims to educate visitors about the thousands of ingredients grown across the Korea and how they are being used to transform lives. “We did Taste of Paris, now London, and we’re just showcasing what we’re doing in the region. Wherever we go, we care a lot about locality and community and we always try to bring the flavours of the area.”

For the London event, Ms. Kim Do-Eun and her team cooked several new food dishes along her own 500 year old recipe.

Talking about the story of 500 year old recipe, she told London Post that In the past, many books were vulnerable to fire, so our ancestors buried numerous books underground to protect them. Over time, these buried books were forgotten. However, one day, a significant flood occurred in Andong, uncovering the buried books. During this time, 30,000 books were discovered, including the Soowoon Japbang. Subsequently, our ancestors took great care of this book, and it has been passed down through generations, eventually coming into my possession, including my mother-in-law’s.

Mr. Kwon remarked, “London is a huge melting pot of a city. People come from different cultures, different backgrounds. And what better backdrop to showcase cuisine and heritage? We have so much to offer, from traditional foods to all the high-end restaurants, but honestly, the home grown traditional foods are some of the best in the world.”

Visitor Experiences

The ؒLondon Food Festival has garnered rave reviews from visitors, both local and international. Many are captivated by the sheer variety of food and the immersive cultural experiences offered. Maria, a tourist from Spain, remarked, “The festival is an explosion of flavors and colors. I’ve never tasted anything like Korean food.

Local visitors also appreciate the festival’s role in preserving and promoting Korean culinary traditions. Ji-hoon, a resident of Seoul, shared, “The festival is a wonderful reminder of our rich heritage. It’s a chance for people of all ages to come together and celebrate our food and culture.”

The festival’s atmosphere is often described as lively and welcoming, with a strong sense of community. Families, friends, and solo travelers alike find themselves bonding over shared meals and cultural activities. The vibrant market stalls, the sound of laughter and music, and the sight of chefs at work all contribute to an unforgettable experience.


Note: The above piece was originally published by London Post on June 16, 2024.

Mati-Ullah is the Online Editor For DND. He is the real man to handle the team around the Country and get news from them and provide to you instantly.

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