Sunday, May 19, 2013

Just for the record


I have been getting some concerned emails, supportive emails and angry emails these days from my readers. First of all, thank you for being concerned and thank you for taking the time to read the blog.

I have been having some technical issues with wordpress and I think that this theme has finally frustrated me to the point of change. It is a chore for me to write and post on this platform so I will be making a change soon. The sight is getting too slow and bogged down with errors and I don't have the technical skills to fix it. I will be changing the theme over and making it more streamlined.

These days I have been very busy with my business and personal relationships so I haven't been able to write so much these days.

And just for the record, my trip to London was sponsored by Chowzter which i stated in my other posts. My dinners at Mosimann's and Saint John and the food tours were paid by myself. My trip to Paris was not sponsored by anyone other than me and my company ( so it was paid by me). It was a research trip to see the food tourism and restaurant scene around the world. If Paris or London had invited me, I would have definitely written more and I would have written a disclaimer stating such.

Restaurants that invite me, I state that I was invited. Almost all the restaurants on the site have been paid out of pocket by myself or my company. I would love to get paid to eat for free at all the restaurants but lets face facts and reality. They would all go out of business if they did that. Also, the expat market (and dollar) is not really significant enough to have food bloggers come and dine for free. While my blog gets over 100,000 page views a month unless it targets the Korean market, it will really have no impact on if it makes or breaks a restaurant.

For those interested in my dining habits and approach to review, I tend to pick restaurants that have an interesting story, chefs, or those that focus on ingredients. I prefer local Korean restaurants in Korea and I like small businesses trying to do something new. Cost is really not that important to me. If the dish is composed of expensive ingredients and requires a high level of skill or the atmosphere is unique or sumptuous then it probably justifies the cost. I will try to state the prices of the dishes for those interested. Also, instead of stating something is just bad or good, I try to write my criticisms more descriptively.

Also, for those that are upset about the ads for the tour company, please understand that my job is the head of tours and marketing at O'ngo Food Communications. I need to build up the SEO of different tour products (and other products) we are selling. For those in the expat community that are not interested in such things, please ignore them. However, keep in mind that we are trying to help out the expat community here in Korea. Our tourism company has in the course of three years become one of the top high-end tour companies in Korea. The tour company doesnt really target many of the expats in Korea. We tried this before but we found that our customer base were mainlu from the overseas market. Because of our success we have been able to have a voice in how the tour business has run. These days we are lobbying to have expats to be able to work in the tour industry for their native language skills are better suited for travelers coming to Korea. At least it will be another option from just teaching English.

For those that had some helpful criticisms. Thank you. My plan is to refocus the website on restaurant reviews. I will think of another venue for random diatribes.