Foreigners Favor Bibimbap, Bulgogi

      October 23, 2007 09:39

      Influential foreigners' favorite Korean food is bibimbap -- an assortment of vegetables and rice served with hot red pepper sauce -- and bulgogi or seasoned grilled beef. According to a survey released Monday by Corean Image Communication Institute, 60 percent of respondents said Korean food stands a good chance of going global because it is healthy and made with plenty of vegetables. But they said high sanitation standards and traditional design of restaurants is essential if that is to happen.

      The survey asked 207 foreigners in influential positions such as global company staff and professors, 78.7 percent of respondents said they like Korean food. Asked why, the vast majority or 60.2 percent said because it tastes good. Some 16.6 percent cited curiosity about new cuisine and 14.2 percent nutritional value. Respondents who did not like eating Korean food cited taste, smell, interior design of restaurants and sanitation.

      Bibimbap was the favorite Korean dish of 17 percent of respondents. Some 13.7 percent of respondents said they liked bulgogi best, while 11.5 percent favored Korean-style short ribs. Only 5.6 percent liked kimchi, Korea's signature side dish of pickled cabbage. More than half of respondents or 58.5 percent said Korean food can be globalized.

      Asked why, 36.7 percent answered because it was made with plenty of vegetables, 21.5 percent cited the rich taste and 18.9 percent said the varied range of dishes. Some 29.1 percent and 20.9 percent of surveyed people said spiciness and strong smell could be an obstacle to globalization. Some 20 percent of respondents said improved sanitation and Korean-style interior design of restaurants are imperative for globalization of Korean food.

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