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[Well-curated weekend] Ready to wolf down a 31,000 won burger?

Gordon Ramsay Burger‘s iconic Hell’s Kitchen Burger (Lotte Department Store)
Gordon Ramsay Burger‘s iconic Hell’s Kitchen Burger (Lotte Department Store)
The Gordon Ramsay Burger is finally here. The Michelin-starred chef’s first burger chain in Asia officially opens on Friday at Lotte World Tower in Jamsil, southern Seoul.

The news of the premium burger chain landing in Korea a few months ago created a buzz concerning its high price. Its iconic Hell’s Kitchen Burger is priced at 31,000 won ($25.91) here, which is much pricier than other so-called premium burger chains like Shake Shack.

Shake Shack burgers‘ prices range from 6,900 won to 12,400 won. 

New Gordon Ramsay Burger located at Lotte World Tower in Jamsil, southern Seoul (Lotte Department Store)
New Gordon Ramsay Burger located at Lotte World Tower in Jamsil, southern Seoul (Lotte Department Store)
The new burger chain sells premium burgers checked by Ramsay himself for quality during his visit to Seoul, according to Lotte Department Store. All the burgers are also prepared by veteran chefs here.

The Hell’s Kitchen Burger has ingredients like roasted jalapeno, tomato and avocado. There are also Ramsay’s signature truffle french fries and sweet potato fries.

Despite the price, the store is expected to be packed with customers this weekend, as it proved its popularity during the pre-open period.

Over 2,000 seats were fully booked within 30 minutes when the pre-open booking opened on Dec. 20.

New Gordon Ramsay Burger located at Lotte World Tower in Jamsil, southern Seoul (Lotte Department Store)
New Gordon Ramsay Burger located at Lotte World Tower in Jamsil, southern Seoul (Lotte Department Store)
There is a famous Ramsey meme from “Hell’s Cafeteria,” which is a parody skit from the American show “The Late Late Show with James Cordon.” In the meme, the star chef holds talk show host Julie Chen‘s head between two slices of bread while yelling “What are you?” Chen replies, “An idiot sandwich.”

Like the meme, is he squeezing two burger buns against Korean customers’ faces, thinking that they are idiots willing to pay for over-priced burgers? Or is he simply aiming to serve a real premium burger?

Find out this weekend.

How Seoul came to be 

Kahng Byong-Kee delivers a lecture in 1993 (Kim Hae-yeon/The Korea Herald)
Kahng Byong-Kee delivers a lecture in 1993 (Kim Hae-yeon/The Korea Herald)
The Seoul Museum of History presents “Seoul as Envisioned by a Scholar of Urban Design,” a special exhibition on Seoul‘s urban planning from the 1960s to the early 2000s, with archival material donated by the family of the late Kahng Byong-Kee, a professor of urban planning and engineering department at Hanyang University.

Born in 1932 on Jeju Island, Kahng attended high school in Japan and studied at the University of Tokyo, where earned his doctorate in 1970.

Kahng became one of the first-generation urban engineers upon returning to Korea, and encouraged citizen-led urban planning practices. Creating a pedestrian plaza in front of Seoul City Hall, the enactment of basic ordinances for ensuring pedestrian rights and improvements to the pedestrian environment in Seoul were some of his main achievements.

The exhibit shows Kahng‘s architecture diaries written while attending Tokyo University, and special proposals he sent to the city on his visions of how Seoul should work, along with a series of video clips featuring interviews of colleagues and students.

Although Kahng was much sought after by the government for consultations and projects, he was not always an easy-going person-- especially when it came to work, according to those who knew him. He was also committed to social activism and believed in urban construction from the ground-up.

Kahng Byong-Kee’s textbooks and diaries from his college years (Kim Hae-yeon/The Korea Herald)
Kahng Byong-Kee’s textbooks and diaries from his college years (Kim Hae-yeon/The Korea Herald)
An excerpt from Kahng’s column, “Design of Seoul, an ideal city,” published in Culture of Life and City, 2009, sheds light on his vision: “Buildings are built quite high according to the size of cars to form the outskirts of the block. But the inside is low to meet the human scale. It’s atypical. But those minor things sometimes give a wonderful appearance (to the city).”

The exhibition continues through March 6 at the Special Exhibition Hall B of the museum. It is closed on Mondays.

Learn about Australia at Seoul Museum of Art 

“Composed body (inherent vice) 3” by Madison Bycroft (Courtesy of the artist)
“Composed body (inherent vice) 3” by Madison Bycroft (Courtesy of the artist)
In celebration of the 60th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between Australia and South Korea, Seoul Museum of Art is hosting a special exhibition called“Un/Learning Australia” that offers a dynamic understanding of the country through works by 35 leading Australian artists and collectives, as well as five indigenous art centers.

The exhibition is co-curated by SeMA and Sydney-based Artspace. It features acclaimed young Australian artist Daniel Boyd, contemporary conceptual artist Archie Moore, South Australian artist Madison Bycroft and Sydney-based multidisciplinary artist Abdul Abdullah. The artists‘ works present the complex cultural, social and political systems of Australia.

The exhibition is amplified by public installations such as Richard Bell’s “Embassy,” which has been staged around the world since 2013, and Agatha Gothe-Snape’s “Lion’s Honey,” which evolved from outreach and workshops with local readers.

Each encourages participants to engage in cross-cultural dialogue, revealing parallel trajectories, crossover points and contradictions that resonate in both Australia and South Korea.

The participating artists, collectives and art centers will present new digital commissions on the platform featuring images, videos, texts, audio and more at Artspace’s Instagram account (@52artists52actions).

The exhibition runs through March 6 at Seoul Museum of Art in central Seoul. Admission is free of charge.

(ssh@heraldcorp.com)
(hykim@heraldcorp.com)
(yunapark@heraldcorp.com)

By Korea Herald (khnews@heraldcorp.com)
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