Food culture in DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea), commonly known as North Korea is as unique and diverse as the country itself. Despite the challenges that the country has faced over the years, its food culture has continued to evolve, and today, it is a rich and vibrant tapestry of flavours and traditions.¬†Eating out in the DPRK is an integral part of the country’s food culture. Restaurants can be found in almost every city and town, serving a variety of local dishes and international cuisines.

One of the most distinctive features of DPRK’s food culture is the emphasis on communal dining. Meals are often enjoyed with family and friends, and it is customary to share dishes and exchange stories while eating. This tradition has its roots in the country’s history and is a reflection of its socialist values, which prioritise collective experience over individual achievement. Another aspect of DPRK’s food culture is its use of locally sourced ingredients. The country’s challenging terrain and limited resources have led to a culture of self-reliance, and many of the ingredients used in DPRK’s cuisine are grown and produced locally. This focus on local ingredients has given rise to a cuisine that is uniquely DPRK, with dishes that are not found anywhere else in the world.

Making Kimchi at home is one of the most popular customs in DPRK

Despite the ongoing economic sanctions and other challenges, the DPRK has managed to develop a unique and delicious food culture. The country’s cuisine is heavily influenced by traditional Korean dishes, but it also incorporates elements from neighboring countries. In recent years, the country has seen a surge in the number of restaurants and cafes opening up, catering to both locals and tourists. These establishments offer a wide variety of dishes, from classic Korean stews and soups to international favorites like pizza, sushi or burgers.

Eating Out: Sushi Restaurant in Pyongyang

Despite the perception that the DPRK is a land of food shortages and malnutrition, the reality is that the country’s food culture is thriving. While it is true that economic sanctions have led to shortages of some goods, the country has managed to develop its own food system, relying on local agriculture and innovative farming techniques. In fact, DPRK has a long history of self-reliance in food production, dating back to the post-Korean War era.

The DPRK has a rich and diverse food culture that is often overlooked in the media. From traditional Korean dishes to international fusion cuisine, the country’s food scene is constantly evolving and adapting. Despite the challenges posed by economic sanctions, the people of DPRK have managed to create a unique and thriving food culture that is a testament to their resilience and ingenuity.