When the Korean Wave washed over Singapore more than a decade ago, it brought along the Korean culture, which is oftentimes spoken through their food. Kimchi, for instance, showed me how resourceful the Koreans were in jazzing up vegetables as boring as cabbage. Their ingenuity not only upped its appeal to the taste buds with its new-found spicy and umami flavours (and as a grown adult who still refuses to eat her greens if given the choice, this is a big deal) but also added to its nutritional value (since it is known to be rich in probiotic bacteria).
What had put me off kimchi, however, were the side effects of consuming it, such as how it tends to trigger my acid reflux, belching and bloating. But what really took the cake was the strong stubborn odour the kimchi would always leave in my fridge and taint other food inside, much to the dismay of my family. These reasons propelled me to limit my kimchi-eating experience over the past few years to Korean restaurants. That was, until a recent (unbearable) late-night craving for the fermented vegetable rekindled the thought of having it at my disposal.
My quest for kimchi on Facebook led me to JIN Kimchi, which was established by a Korean national who runs his own video marketing agency in Singapore. Given the founder’s expertise in digital marketing, it was no wonder that even nonchalant viewers like myself could be so drawn to their promotional videos – typically in the forms of recipes, mukbangs and taste tests – that I ended up ordering two bottles of 345g kimchi in its original flavour on the same night, only to purchase two 690g bottles two days later… and another two more 690g bottles just 10 minutes ago. Sorry, bank account but..
JIN Kimchi is simply too good to resist!
Available in small quantities of 345g (S$17.15) and 690g (S$33.20), the made-to-order kimchi is packed in sealed hexagonal glass jars with a guaranteed delivery turnaround of only 1-2 working days, including Saturday and Sunday. Their promptness in processing my second order is a case in point – the order, although placed at the ungodly hour of 3.37 a.m., managed to arrive at my doorstep at 2.11 p.m. on the same day. Impressive! But do note that a delivery fee of S$2.80 applies to orders below S$50.
Another noteworthy feature of the products is the brilliant packaging. Not only does the glass jar feel substantially luxe, it is also absolutely effective in containing the smell – for real, my fridge (finally) does not reek of rotten vegetables at all! On top of that, the jar has a convenient lug closure system where you would only need to twist the lid once to securely tighten it, so going for seconds (oh trust me, you will!) doesn’t seem so much of a chore anymore! Each order comes with a pair of disposable long wooden chopsticks too which, as cheapskate as I may sound, is rather stingy on their part 🙊 Why not a pair of chopsticks for each jar instead?
Unlike those I have tried in the past, the kimchi boasts a sweeter profile, and neither does it taste too sour or salty. Those with low tolerance to spice (like young children?) would also enjoy this version of kimchi for there isn’t a single hint of spiciness. Perhaps, this is why it doesn’t trigger my acid reflux! The kimchi is recommended to be eaten as a side dish or made into a stew, but I prefer to snack on it plain (thus the title of this review) in order to savour every crunch of it 😋
JIN Kimchi is undoubtedly one of the better-tasting kimchi in the market, but not without some drawbacks. For one, the smaller jar will already set you back more than double the price of what you can get – in much larger quantities – from supermarkets even before factoring in the delivery charges (and the packaging is likely the main driver of the expensive price tag). Despite being delicious, JIN Kimchi is not exempted from adverse effects such as bloating (especially among people – like me – who get gassy easily), excessive flatulence (read: smelly farts) and bad breath. Therefore, you should avoid consuming it prior to attending any major events. Last but not least, JIN Kimchi is highly addictive, so be prepared to finish the whole jar in one day.
You might be interested to know that JIN Kimchi also carries other forms of fermented food including cucumber, radish and spring onion – that is, if napa cabbage does not jive with your taste bud.
What are your thoughts on JIN Kimchi (if you’ve bought from them before) and their products? Let me know what you think in the comments below!
Thanks for reading!