In traditional Korean society, the place for making side dishes was called ‘Chankan’, the place for preparing the king’s meals was ‘Surakan’ and the place for keeping foodstuffs was called ‘Gotkan’. We took the suffix ‘kan’ from these words and created the name ‘Kimchikan’ in the hope that the museum will display diverse aspects and stories of Kimchi and enable visitors to feel, experience, and enjoy it.
Kimchi Museum first opened in Pil-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul.
Pulmuone took over the management of the museum. It was the first Kimchi museum in Korea, and remained as the country’s only food museum for a long time.
The museum moved to the Korea World Trade Center Complex in Gangnam-gu, Seoul. Numerous foreign tourists who visited the country for the 1988 Seoul Olympics stopped by the Kimchi Museum and opened their eyes to the uniqueness and various benefits of Kimchi. This marked the start of the globalization of Kimchi.
Health magazine in the U.S. listed Kimchi among the five healthiest foods in the world, people around the world became more interested in its taste and nutritional benefits. Major global broadcast networks such as BBC, NHK and CNN frequently introduced the Kimchi Museum on their programs, enhancing its renown as a prestigious museum promoting Kimchi among people around the world.
The culture of Kimjang was designated as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage.
Kimchi Museum became the only Korean museum to be selected among the world’s 11 top food museums by CNN.
Apr. 21, 2015
After finishing its days as the Kimchi Museum, which shared a variety of stories and values of Kimchi with millions of visitors from Korea and overseas, it reopened as Museum Kimchikan in Insa-dong, Jongno-gu, a key tourist area in downtown Seoul. While Kimchi, which used to be a daily side dish on the tables of the Korean people, has gradually moved closer into the lives of the people around the world, the museum has also evolved both tangibly and intangibly to respond to such a change. Museum Kimchikan, a new museum of Kimchi based on a long tradition, is starting to tell new stories of the old food, Kimchi, to both Koreans and people throughout the world.