A Trip to the Tuscany of Korea

Gastro Tour Seoul’s ‘Tuscany of Korea’ Tour

The Taean Peninsula to the south-west of Seoul is a lesser-known Korean county which produces some of the country’s highest quality crab, flat fish, abalone, oysters, mackerel, rice, squash pulp, ginger and sea salt.

[All photos taken on a Tuscany of Korea tour unless otherwise stated]

The sea salt here is unique in that it is farmed using sea mud-flat farms, to create ‘ja-yeom’, or ‘boiled salt’. Ja-yeom is listed on the ‘Ark of Taste’ – Slow Food International’s catalogue of endangered heritage foods.

‘Ja-Yeom’ (자염) traditional Korean salt farming.
‘Ja-Yeom’ (자염) traditional Korean salt farming.
Modern ‘Cheonil Yeom’ (천일염) bay or sea salt farming. Photo credit: dochosalts.tistory.com
Modern ‘Cheonil Yeom’ (천일염) bay or sea salt farming. Photo credit: dochosalts.tistory.com

Gastro Tour Seoul’s trip to this area is called the Tuscany of Korea tour because the food ingredients found here are both abundant, and of extremely high quality – much like those found in Italy’s infamous Tuscany region. Taean Country is truly a food-lovers paradise, and also an ideal getaway for those craving a unique culinary and cultural experience out side of the hustle and bustle of Seoul.

The first stop on the tour is a trip to a local market located in Seosan City, where tour attendees can browse and buy from hundreds of stalls of local produce, including Taean Peninsula’s specialties – unique seafoods, vegetables, fruits and dried /semi-dried fish.

Next is a lunch stop, where guests will enjoy a feast of the freshest seafood and ingredients at a local farmer’s restaurant.

A post-lunch trip to a pure rice syrup factory allows guests to learn how this unique Korean condiment is made. Many guests choose to purchase some of the delicious syrup to take home for use in their own baking and cooking. Afterwards, it’s time for dessert at a local rice cookie factory!

During the afternoon, guests have the opportunity to enjoy a tea at the ‘Buseoksa’ mountain temple, which has a history of over 1000 years. Early evening, the group travels to a local harbor to enjoy idyllic sea views and ocean air – the perfect way to relax and unwind while escaping the city!

The day ends with a fantastic seafood dinner – guaranteed to be some of the freshest attendees have ever tasted.

The one-day Tuscany of Korea tour lasts between 10 and 12 hours and runs roughly as following:

09:00 Meet Up
11:00 Arrive in Seosan and browse market
12:00 Lunch at Farmer’s Restaurant
14:00 Rice Syrup Factory
14:30 Rice Cookie Factory
15:30 Buseoksa Temple and Tea Time
16:30 Sea Port Visit and Sun Set
18:00 Seafood Dinner
20:00 Leave for Seoul

The two-day tour includes accommodation at the Deluxe Hotel in Anmyeondo and includes additional trips to a traditional Korean salt farm.

For more information click here or to make an inquiry, email info@gastrotourseoul.com.

Veronica Kang