Sometimes Vice is great. Sometimes Vice is terrible. Sometimes Vice is terrible and stupid all at the same time. To wit, some of the dumbest writing I’ve ever encountered regarding Korean food, and in particular Korean breakfast:
“But traveling around the world has put this obsession even further under the spotlight for me; other people don’t do it the way us Brits do. You can wake up in any foreign town and wander sleepily down the stairs of your hotel, only to find that breakfast means a coffee and a cigarette or, even worse, some underloved pastries or reheated powdered eggs; northern Albania is in the Jim Jarmusch camp, and Equatorial Guinea is big on the lukewarm fishcakes. But those places were nothing compared to the shock of realizing that breakfast doesn’t exist as a concept in South Korea.”
The Korean word for breakfast (and also morning) is achim. So it’s quite literally a major concept in Korean culture and language, along with lunch-time and dinner-time (which can also mean evening in general).
What’s actually “strange” is the British/European/American idea of breakfast as a set of foods (usually sweet — pancakes, toast and jam, scones and cream) that are completely distinct from lunch and dinner dishes (always savory).
I’ve also travelled a lot and the norm around the world seems to be breakfast should be a smaller version of what you’ll probably have for lunch and dinner, and not the Western tradition of breakfast foods being only appropriate for consumption before noon.
And I like me some occasional Western-style breakfasts/sugar orgies, but this whole piece is stupid beyond belief.
And yes, Koreans eat something called toast-u which approximates a Western-style breakfast sandwich. But Koreans most definitely don’t eat it for breakfast, but rather as lunch or an afternoon snack.