Last night I stumbled onto something I hadn’t come across in Korea before. Private Karoke rooms where you order food and alcohol over the phone thats brought to your room. Cheap good service as well. Cost my party of 4 80 dollars for 4 hours of karoke, 2 main courses followed by 6 side dishes, and bottles and bottles of soju(vodka) and beer. This leads to my post. Going out in Korea for anyone young or old means drinking soju. Its very rare to see a table without the shotglasses and empty bottles or the cheering of “chan” or “geombae” or “one shot”.
(A common sight each one of these bottles is about 7 standard drinks)
But when you hang out with young people they like to drink somaek. Somaek is when you get a middie of beer (maekju) and pour in a shot of soju and mix it with a chopstick to make sure the soju doesnt stay at the top. Then you play drinking games where you have to have your somaek in a full or half shot. Drinking in korea starts off by a “one shot”, then repeated full or half shots of soju after. After the first or second bottle of soju has been consumed someone will decide that somaek is a good idea and a jug of beer is ordered.
Drinking in korea leads to two options. One you have to get home at midnight/2 am as you have class/work the next. Usually you will stay at the one bar and maybe go to a karoke afterwards before stumbling home. Many businessmen are passed out on the streets because of this. The second option is going to one bar for dinner and drinks. Followed by another bar for snacks and drinks. Followed by karoke or another bar for drinks and snacks. Then a club. Somaek is something I wont be drinking when I return home. That is if my liver survives this deadly cocktail.
Being too drunk in Korea is not a problem. You friends will politely forget about what happened. As it could be them next.
Soju! Chann!!! Im off to get a hangover.