tv Nomad With Carlton Mc Coy CNN May 14, 2022 11:00pm-12:00am PDT
♪> this is my first time in seoul, my first time in south korea. you never feel farther from home than landing in the country in the middle of the day. you lose track of what time it is and what time it is supposed to be. your body is like freaking out. we are actually a day ahead, which doesn't even matter. it sort of forces you to be in the present. >> driving through seoul is a sensory immersion, the smells of food cooking, signs in korean, the high rises, tiny shops. all of it super fast and forward. >> the first thing you want to do, i just landed and i'm
starving. i'm carlton mccoy, raised in inner city d.c., educated in kitchens around the globe. these days i make a living as a master sommelier. i'm a nomad, driving to move in and out of different cultures, different worlds. i celebrate diversity by embracing what makes us both unique and the same. after all, we carry our travels with us to our next destination. that's what life is all about. let's do this. ♪ >> south korea. like most people, i'm starting out in seoul, an international mega city located near the center of the korean peninsula. it is the beating heart that drives the korean economy and churns out record-breaking pop culture exports, "squid game," "parasite" and bts, the biggest band on earth. this place is fast paced and runs around the clock.
what about the rest of the country? is it super traditional, modern or both? after today i'm headed further into the country side. i want to learn about the people, the drinking culture and, most importantly, the food. >> the food is probably the one part of the culture that i'm the most well-versed in. i've been fortunate enough to have a number of korean friends that have taken me to the homes and hole-in-the-wall spaces i have been taken to. on the surface he is a teddy bear, but after a couple of bottle the tiger comes occupy. we go way back. we met at culinary school and have been friends ever since. he is one of the first koreans to become a master sommelier. i'm meeting him and gung jong market to get some food. >> hey, buddy. nice to see you. >> i'm so excited to see you.
>> me too. welcome to my home. >> what's the name of this? >> this is kwong jong market. it is one of the oldest markets in korea. it started with different types of clothing, textiles, a lot of whole sellers started the market. naturally it grew out to be a lot of food stalls. >> this is incredible. i think we're going to eat good. what is that home wrecker over there. >> oh. i'm getting it. >> what is this? >> it is blood sausage. >> i love blood sausage. >> oh, yeah. >> can we get some booze? >> okay. i'm ready to go. how old am i? 37. >> 37. >> is that how you decide how much you eat and drink. >> no, no, in korea the first conversations start with how old are you. >> what? >> because korea has a very strict social hierarchy. you have to respect the elders. >> how old are you? >> 38. >> okay. so i can't disrespect you is what you are saying. >> i will give you a welcome
drink. >> okay. >> this is soju. you have to shake it. and put it in there. so this is a korean apertif, we call it somak. >> is that moon --che cheers, buddy. >> cheers. >> it is like the korean spritz? this is a very typical -- anything that accompanies drink. this is chicken feet and pork skin in spicy sauce. it is a staple street food everyone loves. then we have a rice cake with pepper paste. >> everyone is using it everywhere. >> they use it. >> let's try the blood sausage. that's [ bleep ] good. it is actually very different. it has a similar texture like the sticky rice. it is well-balanced, delicate. >> it is one of my favorites.
oh, yeah. >> i don't know how you say that but everyone knows what this means. >> that's right. >> let me pour you some. >> i will do two hands to show respect to my elder. >> that's why you drink it with beer. >> to me it reminds me of home. everyone is talking over each other, drinking and having a good time. that's what i love about korean people. >> yes, korean people, it is hard to translate but it is a feeling that you are attached to another person. it naturally brings out the hospitality. >> like abuntu, what they call it in africa. i have it on my arm. >> maybe you can tattoo jung. >> it is hard to explain if you aren't in korea. it is more of a feeling, an attachment or a bond between people or sometimes between a person and a place. >> you ladies want a shot? she's like, i'm on the clock.
>> i think i get it though. even though i haven't seen chung moon in years we always have a blast when we do. that type of connection must be chung. >> i'm ready for it. >> i know you are. i'm a little terrified. >> as the sun sets the city comes along and we head out on the town. seoul is known for its amazing street food, but the night world class fine dining. michelin starred. one of the favorites for a traditional cuisine given a modern makeover by the head chef. >> joining us is korean-american
strategist. while my buddy moon knows food and wine, he is not necessarily what i call a cultural influencer, but she is. i need her to help me understand the korea of today. >> how long have you guys known each other? >> since i was 19. i was 19 when we met. >> 19, yeah. >> a few years. >> he's way more formal in korea than he is in the u.s.. >> his korean-ness comes out? >> big time here. cheers, guys. >> cheers. >> it was great. >> nice to meet you guys. >> so your work is essentially building brands? >> building brands, knowing what the cool kids are in to, i guess to tie brands to consumers in the best way possible. >> to do that you have to understand the culture well. >> you have to be part of it, a consumer. >> from what i understand korean culture is a bit of a paradox, at once super traditional but also super modern. i am seeing that play out in the food here. for dinner we are having galbi and the famous rice dish, beep
and bob. the chef's versions are elevated and refined to their purest form. it is clear korea is evolving, but how and where is it going next. >> walk me through the last 20 years of what happened in korea. >> basically from the 1950s after the korean war, korea was quite a poor, underdeveloped country, but ingrained were culture and basically built the economy to what it is today. there's this thing called the korean wave, how you wave. i think that has helped the country to be relevant in global popular culture, is that digital, savvy, very reactive to what is going on. as soon as like a trend pops off. >> yeah. >> koreans will take it in. they'll reinterpret it in their own way, and i think it essentially becomes korean. >> korea as it stands now, would you say it is a very traditional country or is it like a modern culture? where does it lie in that spectrum? >> i believe they're putting a lot of emphasis in kind of
like -- hougw do you say? >> individuality? >> individuality, but koreans are constantly changing. i think now they're a lot more looking in and being much more proud of korean culture, whether it is traditional or modern like k-pop, korean beauty, food. >> and also in like the korean as well as becoming more trendy, fun and interesting and people are ready to listen. >> yes, it is cool to be korean right now. ♪ >> and seoul is the apex of coolness. look around. it is electric. but things haven't always been this way. how did south korea go from one of the least developed countries on the planet to an economic and pop culture superpower? >> we sort of came to south korea hot. i mean you can tell, like this is a city filled with people who have like infinite energy. like these people go. you plop in the middle and you either like keep up or you don't, but it is definitely not the identity of the entire country. >> tomorrow we are leaving
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or at least i think it is morning. on the other side of the world it can be hard to tell sometimes. i've been awake for hours, ready to hit the road and see what chung moon has lined up for us as we leave seoul behind. our first stop for an exclusive tasting. >> soju is a clear liquor made from rice and one of the best-selling spirits in the world, even though it is not easy to find outside of korea. some people are looking to change that, including this guy. >> i got this made before i actually decided to launch my own brand.
>> k-pop turned hip-hop superstar jay park, the first celebrity to launch his own brand of soju with the guidance of a master brewer. >> what is the driving force behind starting a soju brand? why is it important to you? >> when i was signed to rock nation as the first asian artist i wanted to bring something unique to korea. i didn't want to come out to be something i'm not. i wanted to try to bring something to the culture that was different. >> sure. world famous multi-platinum korean hip-hop producer jay park has been at the forefront of the k-pop movement for over a decade. >> so i came out with a song called "soju." >> i heard it. it is great. >> thank you. i appreciate it. also, it felt natural for me to do soju instead of a whiskey or vodka. >> they want you to be an ambassador for the culture? >> yes, and alcohol and music, it is like everybody in the world can relate. >> that's correct. >> you know, here we are, korea
is one of the most popping countries now when 20 years ago no one even knew where it was. >> no, i agree. before moon started to develop his company to important very high-quality soju in the u.s. i didn't know there was high-quality soju at all. >> neither did. i with the two hands. >> i'm learning about the social cues. >> the korean drinking culture is crazy. everything is open 24 hours so basically you can drink at all hours of the day. >> you can drink outside. >> no brown bag necessary? >> not at all. >> it is a luxury. >> it is a luxury and a curse at the same time. cheers. >> i'm going to follow his lead. >> we turn the back a little bit. >> how old are you? >> when you drink you turn the back. you don't want to face -- sort of -- >> it is like a sign of respect. >> this is very complicated social cues. but this is so much better than all of the stuff you were feeding me yesterday but it is
legit. >> you have to start somewhere. >> you have to start somewhere. >> yeah. >> talk to me about being a young korean-american, being raised with the experience of american culture and trying to tran translate through a korean awe lens. >> i was like, i'm from korean and they were like, where is that. being an asian male, you are not supposed to be good at sports and you're definitely not to supposed to rap. i come to korea and they look down on me for not knowing korean culture and not speaking korean. everywhere you go you have an identity culture. now everything is so sensitive. why do you try to be black. >> yeah, yeah. >> you know, i'm not trying to be anything. i owe everything to hip-hop, and so everything i do, all of these success, people even caring what i say, it is all because of hip-hop. it is not just music to me. >> hip-hop generates an insider culture. >> exactly.
>> you can't separate hip-hop as a music genre. >> the attitude i have towards it, i always try to do it justice so that i don't embarrass the culture or the people that represent the culture as well. >> i never felt like i fit in as a kid because of my mixed background, yet the more i travel it is easy to see the world is increasingly mixed, too. korean america, soju and hip-hop. a big part of my job is pairing, so this makes perfect sense to me. sometimes the most unexpected combos are the ones that stick with you. ♪ >> from jay we head deeper into the heart of the city to a city called ungdong, home to a guest house where we will be staying for the night. this is the historic home of the lee family. 18 generation landowners who can trace their family lineage back over 600 years.
visitors who stay here are treated to the homemade liquors and meals prepared by the family matriarch. it is almost like going back in time. volume gets turned down, things start moving very slow. and then, amazingly, against all odds i slow down, too. >> i mean we are right in the middle of the city. >> yeah. >> and now we are right in the middle of nature. the older i get, the less time i want to spend in cities. >> the same here. >> i see peace and quiet. >> the perfect place to recharge. >> this is an incredible place. this is special. tonight we are sharing a spread of simple and elegant anju. we are eating a korean beef tartare dressed with a little
soy sauce and scallion. >> it is great. >> so much flavor. >> beef is super tender. >> fried cod dressed with a glaze. >> it is really good. >> it is like all of the food looks very simple but the flavors are super strong and very complex. >> i love korean food. >> nice to meet you. call me bk. >> bk. bk li is the oldest son of the li family and is in line to inherit the family estate. is ti family and is in line to inherit the family estate.e is the olde li family and is in line to inherit the family estate.e is li family and is in line to inherit the family estate. fami inherit the family estate.e fam inherit the family estate.e fam inherit the family estate. >> so this is tongju but they add a special seasonal flour. >> can we have a drink with this? >> come on.
>> it is definitely cleaner, lighter texture and sweet. that's really good. >> and the subtle floral nights, a nice carry through. >> thanks for having us today. this is super special. so his family owns this place. >> that's right, for 600 years. >> yeah. it is crazy. do you feel that the younger generation in korea values places like this? >> i didn't expect that answer. i think if there was one positive about how fast the world moves today, all of the technology, social media, it is actually drawing people back into places like this. young people are leading the pack, they're sort of like starting to say, we don't want this, you know. i think it is really powerful.
>> thank you. sitting here in this beautiful valley, three hours and yet a million miles away from seoul, i feel like bk could be right, that the cycle of fast is slow, feeds itself over years and years. you cannot have a city like seoul without places like this where time stands still, generation after generation. as a sommelier i understand the power of thought. the wine business is all about time, aging, fermentation, the patience it takes to get something truly great out of a bottle. but here in the old country of korea, time and patience are taken to a whole new level. i feel like i'm a student again and i still have a lot to learn.
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weren't even aware of the korean war while it was happening. hidden here, michael jung's artesnal farm. these are the building blocks of cuisine, sometimes referred to as the mother sauce of korea. these are aged in earthen ware jugs spread out across the property. >> we have over 3,000 pots, and it is exposed to the nature and climate. so it is very important to get the clean wind and sunshine. >> so the weather of like this valley impacts the result with like the wind, the rain, the sun and everything? >> that's right. that's right. it is like -- like the wine. >> we use grapes and you use soybeans. >> soy beans, right. >> am i allowed to taste these? >> yes. >> there are primary jugs or mother sauces, all made from
fermented soybeans. there's one similar to japanese miso but more complex. another, a thick, red, spicy red paste and one that is darker and little sweet. for the most special ones, it will be at least four years until these are ready. >> this is the 2016 vintage. so this is very well balanced. >> that looks pretty gnarly, i'm going to be honest with you. that looks rough. that has a lot of personality, you know what i'm saying? i'm used to having the process, you know, in the jar. that was a big piece. i'm going in deep. i think initially it is very salty. i think when the salt dissipates
is when you get the umami. it has bright notes, almost like citrus fruit but it is savory as well, almost meaty like mushrooms. it is beautiful. are you happy with it? >> i'm happy with it. >> you love it? >> yeah. >> it is your heart. thank you. the amount of care and time that goes into making these is mind blowing. they're an art form in and of itself and michael has partnered with new york-based michelin star chef to help spread them throughout the world. hooni kim is a fanatic about korea in general. his excitement comes through in everything that he does. he is making us green onion pancakes in michael's enormous kitchen. moon asked hooni to join us for the next part of the trip and i'm excited to have him, but first lunch. >> carlton.
>> carlton, nice to meet you. welcome. >> you too. >> have a seat. >> thank you. >> getting lunch ready using some of the things that we make here. today for lunch we are going to make something with a scallion pancake. it is a traditional pancake, but we added this so it is a little red. >> i have a version at a korean barbecue in new york. >> as an appetizer? >> yes. >> this one will be sweet, salty and a little bit of a funky finish. >> good. >> but that's what makes it delicious. >> chung is perfectly paired with makali. >> is that what this is? >> yes. >> makali or farmer's liquor is an unfiltered rice wine with a sweet and sour taste and a little effervescence.
>> this is delicious. >> you always make this sound when you are drinking malaki. you have to say ahh. >> is it refreshing? >> it sounds like you are in pain. it is relieving pain and it is refreshing. >> beautiful. >> it smells amazing. >> seasoned great. you don't need soy sauce. >> tit really transforms this simple pancake into something complex and delicious. it is perfect on its own. >> your guests in your restaurants, i imagine you have to educate them on the significance of this jong, the stuff they can get on the shelf. >> when somebody orders it at the restaurant, the whole restaurant will know and that sparks a very good conversation. it is like, what is that? >> that's a big part of my job
when i was a sommelier, is educating people. i'm intrigued by looking at the culture. there's a lot of parallels with wine making. you can't industrialize on a mass scale what we do at some of the wineries. it is the same thing here. >> you can't mass produce time and that's what it needs. >> starting in seoul where everything is fast, fast, the moment you leave the city everything slows completely down. every conversation we have had about is how long these processes take, how slow everything goes. how do you deal with that juxtaposition between the sort of more modern, never-fast-enough culture in seoul and taking the time to do things in the countryside? you know, as much as it should be taken. >> taking time is very important for the jangs. we make the jang that's our mothers' and history from 2,000
years ago. >> that 2,000 history of making jang could be lost, while you are continuing the history that can be handed down to the next generation and really appreciated. >> yeah, cheers. good things, great time. >> come back. >> come back. connected, cutting downtime, and delivering on time depends on t-mobile 5g. and with coverage of over 96% of interstate highway miles, they've got us covered. (vo) unconventional thinking delivers four times the 5g coverage of verizon. and it's ready right now. t-mobile for business. ♪ oh, here we go ♪ ok. ♪ ♪
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as the sun begins to set, ooni moon and i head down the mountain to the largest port in the region. even though we've made a bunch of memories together i won't soon forget, i'm considering something a little more permanent. >> have you ever gotten a tattoo? >> no. >> want to get one? >> no. >> why not? >> my wife said no. >> this is chung, new friends and old, sharing stories, laughing, having a good time as if we've all been connected somehow all along. the city comes up on you in a flash. one moment all mountains, and the next you are back in civilization. at the heart of the city, jukto fish market, the largest in all of korea. hooni, moon and i head out for a night of libations at the favorite fish market.
at night it is the place to be for great food and soju and beer. it looks like hooni is a little bit of a celebrity here. you've got a fan club. >> yeah. >> you can get anything at this market, from pacific herring to crazy-looking snals to gigantic squid and octopus. the dish everybody says you have to get is the snow crab, or daja which loosely translates to big ass crab. >> they fight. >> they fight? >> yeah. >> they guy looks like he lost. you can have the loser. >> this guy got [ bleep ]. >> oh, my gosh. >> don't call him a loser. he's a fighter. >> oh, yeah. >> now, coming from d.c., i'm
somewhat of a crab connoisseur. my standards and expectations are super high. >> oh. now we're talking. all you guys -- >> elders. >> elders first. >> elders first. two hands. >> yes. >> you're learning. >> moon, i'm a quick learner. >> it took three days but a quick learner. >> yes. it is tough when you are drunk the whole time. >> oh, look at that. >> wow. >> i eat crab with my teeth. i love crab so much. anywhere in the world where i can eat crab, you sort of feel like home. i love it. it is not as intense as king crab, but the texture is more delicate. >> definitely. >> it is really fine. >> like it is the texture you would imagine what a feather tastes like. like really perfectly cooked
like cod. moon has no problem finishing his beer. >> belly full, a little buzzed, feeling the love. the one bit of important business to attend to, a nod to my time in korea, but also a nod to this guy here and our time together. i think the concept of chung and that special bond you have with certain people or places is a perfect symbol to take with me. >> when i started traveling the world i started getting tattoos, maybe in places i felt a special connection to. it is like instead of buying some stupid trinket, you have a tattoo that like -- it allows you to tell a story everywhere you travel in the world, you know. i think there's a certain philosophy you can relate to. chong is one i heard about it and i thought it is a brilliant approach to life. this concept is very difficult to explain, you have to feel it.
i think it is a beautiful day. >> today is your last day. >> it is the last day. >> i mean we met the first time like 17 years ago, and i mean that's where we started at chong, that feeling, that connection. it continued on. >> we'll come back here when we are old men. >> yes. >> finally by then you will get a tattoo. i'll get you guys both a tattoo. i'll pay. he goes never going to happen. >> never going to happen. >> that's chong. the beautiful thing about chong is you can't explain it. >> like most things you can't explain, sometimes you just need to look around and feel it to understand.
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♪ ♪ the island, a short flight from a port city but miles away in how it feels. it is a tropical paradise subject to some pretty unpredictable weather. hooni has a deep connection to this island, and in particular this place, ojino, a farm-to-table restaurant. hooni credits the wongs with inspiring not only his cooking but how he approaches every aspect of his life. i've been invited to meet the head of the family for a
predinner drink, but not exactly my typical. >> carlton mccoy. the patriarch of this family, mr. wong. >> welcome. >> thank you. >> the tea mr. wong is preparing today is a combination of herbs, roots, mushrooms and minerals, many of which are decades old. >> you can tell it is one of the places where you walk in that you're not the boss. >> you're right. i'm not here to add any of my personality here. >> yeah. >> no, i'm here to receive and absorb. you feel this place is special. >> it puts you in that place immediately here. >> i'm more of a coffee kind of guy, but you know what? after this trip i'm open to anything, so bring it on. let the healing begin.
this is food as medicine, a holistic approach to well-being, one that mr. wong and his family adopted after a long and serious illness took the sight in one of his eyes and almost took his life. now they share it with the world through this place. >> carlton, i would like to introduce you to the chef. chef jong. she is in charge of all of the food today. >> so you operate the kitchen here at this restaurant? >> so a real chef, a real chef. yeah, yeah. the spread is incredible. there are dozens of small dishes that are standard with any korean meal. there's also home-brewed cranberry wine. it is beautiful. pickled vegetables from the garden. is the goal to have all four seasons related in every meal? >> yes. >> well, that's mr. hong's
philosophy. >> i'm learning, we are all students at this table. >> yes. >> wild mushroom chop chai. >> they sort of strip it. >> i could to the work here. >> abalone with citrus. >> it is like candied. that's luxurious. >> it is grown here. >> and a delicious homemade tofu that is mr. wong's favorite. the food is painstakingly prepared by mrs. wong and for good reason. >> how has your husband's philosophy how he likes to heal people with food and with tea, how has it impacted the way that you cook?
>> she saved his life. >> beautiful. i'm very impressed, like, it is actually in one piece. how do you grill the fish? >> a very long grill. >> the main course, an enormous, freshly-caught fish. >> the fish is exceptional. >> i've never had a fish with a texture like this. it's like you would have mixed eel and bass together. >> also the stew with pork and kimchi, aged for over a decade. >> a lot of flavor, right? >> a lot of flavor. i think a normal grocery store
pig would be overwhelmed. >> this is ten-year-old kimchi. >> for us we've been taught that nutrition is not something we really think about. as restaurant owners. >> not even for a second. >> no. she doesn't think that way, whether it be for family or guests. it's about making sure that you're a guest at our house and you're going to leave healthier than when you came in. >> there is nothing you could have told me that could have properly put this taste into perspective. it's everything. it all culminates into what make this is incredibly unique. it's a beautiful philosophy that nearly all civilizations need to take away from it. >> it's truly special. now i'm not giving up on aspirin or anything, but it's important
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♪ [food sizzling] here you go buddy. thank you. ah, thank you. have a good one. you too. [singing] happy birthday curve of the cartesian plane good job. ♪ [cheering] [cheering and clapping] [sound of armor clicking] [electrical noise sound] [clicking sound] ah! yes! [laugh] you may kiss the bride. [cheering] it is about communication. i love you very much. ♪ [sound of tape application] sign up for three [sound of plane engine] ♪ we love you, mom. we love you, dad. [sound of ocean] oh my god. that's our baby girl. [sound of heartbeat on ultrasound] ♪ hey you two, go outside and play. ♪ ♪
create a season full of playfulness. your happiest spring starts at lowe's. getting guns off our streets. one democrat's determined to get it done. attorney general rob bonta knows safer streets start with smarter gun control. and bonta says we must ban assault weapons. but eric early, a trump republican who goes too far defending the nra and would loosen laws on ammunition and gun sales. because for him, protecting the second amendment
is everything. eric early. too extreme, too conservative for california. being connected. it's vital for every student. so for superintendent of public instruction, tony thurmond, it's a top priority. closing the digital divide, expanding internet access for low-income students and in rural areas. it's why thurmond helped deliver more than a million devices and connected 900,000 students to broadband over the last two years - to enable online learning. more than 45,000 laptops went to low-income students. re-elect tony thurmond. he's making our public schools from my last day in korea,
we were blessed with great weather. jiayu in the sunshine is amazing. ancient, foreign, sprawling coastal highways. the mountain in the middle. the largest peak in all of korea, but the largest treasure is probably these women. ♪ ♪ legendary free divers known as "sea women." they don't use any scuba gear or modern equipment and have been harvesting shellfish off the coast of jeju since the seventh century. she left her old life in seoul behind, hoping to learn this profession.
i'm going to make some ramen with the turban shell that you caught. >> yeah, we're going to sit over here and drink. >> soup base and the noodles are in. the jeju shrimp and the turban shells are in. all it needs is an egg. and some green, hot peppers. >> whoa. >> ah, thank you. >> you're welcome. you know, i did my country men proud, because the noodles are -- >> i grew up eating ramen, almost every day. we doctor it up. we put an egg in it, vienna sausage. is this something people know about in seoul or something particular to jeju? [ speaking in foreign language ]
[ speaking in foreign language ] >> gratitude. being thankful, appreciating what you have. sitting here on this beautiful island, i feel it. through and through. how i got here, the crazy gear shift between city and country, the whirlwind of jet lag and travel, floating through time and space. most people who come here stop at seoul. but to understand korea, you have to look beyond just one city. i was lucky enough to have the two very best guides one could ask for on this trip. close friends, old and new. you're going to feed me all day. memories shared and made. all of us connected. i feel changed by these people
and this country. both have reminded me to find time to slow down, take it all in. i have a hell of a lot still to learn. in that time, in all its manifestations, fast and slow, past and present, it's truly the most precious ingredient. hello, and welcome to "cnn newsroom." i'm paula newton. coming up, a scene of horror rattles a new york community when a gunman opens fire in a grocery store killing ten people. finland prepares to formally announce its intent to join nato. we'll take you live to helsinki for more on that, and the euro vision finale that is called a
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