Looking into the coffee history of Korea, there is one interesting story regarding instant culture. Coffee arrived in Korea for the first time around the end of the 19th century, but the general public actually started to enjoy coffee after the Korean War in 1945. Instant coffee was spread from US Army and coffee culture finally began. At the same time, it was common to sell instant coffee in the cafés, so basrista sold a coffee with the combination of instant coffee, powdered milk and sugar. Customers were able to choose the amount of spoons they wanted. After a while, one company created a product called ‘mixed coffee’ and it was a combination of 1 spoon of coffee, 3 spoons of sugar and 2 spoons of powdered milk whick was concerned as golden ratio. Mixed coffee achieved a huge popularity since then, and still it is taking a big part of moden people's life.



> First mixed coffee in 1976, maxwellhouse coffee mix, photos from Dongsuh foods corporation

Instant coffee, which is a symbol of Korea instant culture has not only a short preparation time, but also the same quantity, recipe and flavour. In other words, it has a standardised flavour due to the same ingredients with the manuals. So there is no failure if we just follow the instructions and achieve the same result every time.

Unlike instant coffee, there are many options with different outcomes in the process of making coffee(coffee except instant coffee). Coffee is an acquired taste which means we drink it not because it has a great nutrition, but a special odour and taste. Coffee quality comes from the beans and the time of roasting. Also the quantity of coffee or water as well as the method of brewing and other flavours such as sugar, crème or vanilla affect to the result. In other words, coffee has a value in the way it is produced: we can enjoy the process to create our own favourite taste.


In this project, I create a process in mixed coffee; the process of disassembling the package of mixed coffee, and combining it again to create a personal taste. From the process, people can achieve their own customized instant coffee, which has paradoxical meaning in a way that people get personalized results  from the standardised mass production.

> How it works