A photo of the menu of one Korean restaurant has gone viral for the label it gives to its least spicy option.
The unidentified eatery, believed to be located in either the U.S. or Canada, ranked its menu according to spiciness.
It starts with “Extra Spicy,” the spiciest from the top (denoted by two chilis), followed by “Regular Spicy” (one chili), “Medium” (half chili) and “Mild” (little chili).
But what comes after “Mild” has gotten Reddit, where user peternok originally posted the image, in a heated debate.
The restaurant calls it “White,” and it’s the least spicy option available. As seen in the photo, it has no chili at all.
User peternok’s post was upvoted at least 7,970 points since Thursday. As it turned out, Redditors are divided in interpreting the label.
While some found it funny, others felt it was racist. Comments read:
“What I find more funny is the ‘mild’ option in Korean says ‘안맵게’ meaning ‘not spicy.'”
“I’m a white guy and I’m sick of all the jokes on Reddit being about everyone else’s race. I’d love to hear a solid white people joke.”
“As a white person, I wasn’t even mad before reading your comment. I would be like oh thank fuck its going to be actually not spicy, as I don’t like spicy stuff. I can see why people would think it’s racist though, it kinda accidentally implies white people are too weak to handle even mild spice.”
“I am white and I don’t find it offensive to say/hear that we are infamous in not liking spicy food. It’s obviously a stereotype just like any other but nothing to get mad about even if it’s said in a racist manner. We, as white people, need to collectively chill.”
“Asian here, I have to read the comment to understand that the joke is about ‘racist white.’ How could you guys relate that to skin color stuff? Stop being racist all the time, man.”
Yet others offered explanations:
“I always thought it just referred to the color of the broth. Since “White” 순두부 is actually white lol. Used to eat it that way when I was younger.”
“The Korean characters to the right would translate to the color white, not white people, which is a different word (백인). In Korean culture the color white is associated with purity, in this case the implication would be ‘without any, or very little spice of any kind.'”
“I’d say this is like the equivalent of the colloquial use of white/red to describe pasta sauce (tells you absence or presence of certain key ingredients). But I guess it needs re-explaining since it’s Asian and ‘ooo uncommon.'”
What do you think?