drinking in korea

1, 2, Cha, Cha, Cha: The Rounds of Korean Nightlife

It's no secret that Koreans are some of the hardest workers in the world.  From a young age, one spends his or her school days buried in books, memorizing endless pages of material, and hopping from math to English to art academy.  There's very little time for play, or childhood even.  Things don't change much by the time one reaches the workplace.  Of the cities across the globe, those working in Seoul put in the most working hours per week on average. Efficiency has nothing to do with it, but because of their propensity to work hard, they find it necessary to play hard, too.  And very few can play as hard as Koreans do.

Mixin' It Up at Chef's Night In with Bacardi Korea

The following post is a piece I wrote for KoreaBites.com and Bridge Magazine.

There's no doubt that La Cuisine Cooking Academy's Chef Night In is the event of the summer. Already in full swing, the series of dinner parties features international chefs that prepare a hand-selected three course menu all the while sharing stories of their pasts and their passions for food. Chef's Night In has created quite a buzz amongst Seoulites, as it has successfully achieved the trifecta for the perfect summertime soiree: tasty food, promising entertainment, and exceptional socializing. But, let's be honest. A party isn't a party without a bit of booze and the event's mixologists have guaranteed that this essential element not be excluded.

Wine Party (in the park)

There’s a park in Victoria, my Canada home, called Beacon Hill.  It’s huge and beautiful. Weeping willows and cherry blossoms and peacocks and families of fat ducks floating on ponds.  Baby goats in a petting zoo.  Stone bridges crossing water.  Miles of grass. My mom took my brother and I there to feed the ducks when we were kids, breaking off crumbs from old loaves of bread she saved for the outings in our freezer. I know, you’re not supposed to feed animals in parks, but it was common then (I think?), and my mom loved to toss the crumbs on the ground and let the ducks swarm the feast at our feet, listening to their quacks and the west-coast wind that gusted off the Pacific at the edge of the park.  Those days were shortly after we moved to Victoria from Saskatoon, to be closer to the ocean, my mom said, and the artists there.


7 Things About Korea: Drinking Culture

Much like the neighboring Japanese, the Koreans have a rich drinking culture to go along with their near suicidal work ethic. But hey, if I worked as hard as the average Korean did - I'd be driven to drink copious amounts of alcohol too. I barely work half as much and I'm already borderline.

 

If you like a good drink, Korea is going to feel like a welcome homecoming to you. Not only is the stuff both cheap and readily available, but a large part of being a part of the foreigner crowd is getting out and socializing at the many bars, clubs, and... well... anywhere. Korea has no open bottle law, so you can roam the street with a 1.5 liter pitcher of Hite (Korean beer) and nobody will say boo. I wouldn't advise it though. We foreigners already have a bad enough reputation in this country.

 


Surviving Your First Month in Korea

 

That first month after taking a new job in South Korea can be one of the hardest. It's not just that you're adjusting to a new country and a new job, but you're also going to be living on whatever meager savings you brought with you until that magical first pay check comes in. If you've been responsible and saved some cash for the occasion - your $1500 or so will be more than enough. If you're like me and come over on a whim, you might be trying to stretch $800 or so. That's definitely doable, but here are a few tips for making that money last while still having a good time.

Most Korean jobs pay monthly, so you're going to need to make that money last for at least four weeks. Thankfully Korea is a really cheap place to live, so with the tips below you'll be right.


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