After a night of heavy drinking comes the inevitable – Hangovers, 숙취 sukchwi in Korean . Koreans, known for their spirit of resistance, found ways to chase away the unwelcome guest.
WHAT KOREANS EAT TO CURE HANGOVERS
Haejang 해장 literally means “to soothe the stomach,” and Koreans firmly believe in a bowl of hearty, nutrition-packed soup to rejuvenate their dehydrated, aching bodies. For this reason, any soups eaten to cure a hangover are called haejangguk 해장국 (guk means “soup,” so they are commonly known as “hangover cure soup”). The following are among the popular choices. Try them all and see what works best for you! (It’s a good excuse to drink, right?)
No time to sit down for a bowl of haejangguk? No worries! Your hung-over Korean friends invented a variety of ready-to-drink hangover cure products you can grab at a convenience store near you (As of 2019, South Korea’s hangover-relieving product market, which has various formulations such as beverages, pills, and jelly, is a 250 billion won (213 million USD) industry). They contain ingredients such as dihydromyricetin extracted from the raisin trees in Gangwon Province, milk thistle, red ginseng, and medicinal herbs that are proven to help relieve, as well as prevent hangover symptoms. Try them all and see what works for you! (Hey, another good excuse to drink!)
Found them on Amazon. Fight hangovers Korean way.
Another product that deserves an honorable mention is the Garamandeun Bae 갈아만든 배(“crushed pear (juice),” more popularly known among the non-Koreans as the “ldh” drink, for that the Korean word “배” looks like the alphabet “ldh.” This sweet crushed-pear juice found itself in the limelight when GQ magazine published an article introducing the Korean crushed-pear juice as a legitimate potion to prevent hangovers if taken beforehand.
Does Amazon also have them? Yes they do! Maybe stock them up before going out on this Friday night?
When Korean people go out, they go out-out, and won’t settle in just one place. Rather, they would let their party spirit guide them and visit a series of places for continued entertainment. Each changing of place/stage is called cha 차 (“order, number, turn”), and the 1-cha (il cha, “first stage”) typically starts at a restaurant to have dinner and drinks (samgyeopsal 삼겹살 (pork belly) and soju is a popular combo). When people start to feel the effect of alcohol, someone will shout out “let’s go 2-cha,” (i cha) and begin the bar-hopping sequence! Usually, they move on to a bar or pub suited for more intense drinking. By the time they are done paying respects to Dionysus, the omnipotent God of alcohol, everybody is in the right atmosphere for 3-cha (sam cha), to meet Apollo, the God of music. That’s right! It’s noraebang 노래방 (karaoke) time! Here, the main purpose is not singing but relieving all your stress because if you’ve made it to this stage, you’re too drunk to care what the lyrics are. Better yet, or adding fuel to the fire, most noraebangs serve alcohol, so you can stay tipsy throughout the session.
In case you missed – Types of Korean drinking games! Sam-yuk-gu 삼육구 (“3,6,9”) / Son Byung Ho 손병호 / Image Game 이미지 게임 / Nunchi Game 눈치 게임 / Baskin Robbins 31! Learn how to play them like a native Korean!