[WSJ] South Korea’s Latest Foodie Fad: Lobsters

January 26, 2015


(Courtesy of Korea Customs Service)

(Courtesy of Korea Customs Service)


Forget macadamias and honey butter chips, South Koreans have it bad for lobsters.

A flurry of establishments serving the crustacean have opened recently, offering platters and lobster rolls in a country where the decapod has long been seen as limited to the realms of fine dining and marbled wedding halls.

Paul Jung, co-owner of Lobster Bar in Seoul’s Itaewon district, says business has been so brisk that he had to relocate to larger premises six months after opening in May 2014.

“We wanted to introduce lobster to Koreans but it wasn’t possible before because of the prices. Many of our customers are trying lobster for the first time,” says Mr. Jung.

One reason prices have come down is because U.S. consumer belt-tightening has reduced domestic demand, forcing suppliers to lower prices, explains Oh Sang-yong, an analyst at the U.S. Trade Office in Seoul.