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Meet the plumcot: this summer’s hot fruit hybrid

Aug 14,2019
Four items made with plumcot, a hybrid of plum and apricot, are now available. From left: Richmont Bakery’s rolled cake; Caffe Themselves’s smoothie: Mystery Brewing’s sour ale; Zenzero’s gelato. [TAE HOON KANG]
Fruits that Koreans have rarely seen at a local supermarket may become more familiar soon thanks to industry experts trying to mix and match existing options.

The plumcot, a hybrid of apricot and plum, which has been relatively rare in Korea, is becoming more accessible with some of the retailers working with the Rural Development Administration (RDA) to bring the fruit to their shelves. Four retailers, including a bakery, a craft beer maker, a cafe, and a gelateria worked on developing products using the stone fruit to introduce fun new items for consumers to try. These products became available this month.

Korea first fostered a type of plumcot named Harmony in 2007, followed by the Tiffany in 2010, and Symphony in 2012. The fruits started to hit the market beginning this year. Harmony has a yellow inside while the Tiffany is more red. With a project called “Meet Plumcot,” the RDA is trying to find retail channels for farms.

Looking for sweeter options? Grab a smoothie at Caffe Themselves located in Jongno District, central Seoul. The cafe has worked to come up with drink options that are not widely available at other coffee and dessert spots, including a plumcot drink to help beat the summer heat. It is 5,800 won ($4.74).

A gelato made with the stone fruit is available at Zenzero in Gangnam District, southern Seoul. Unlike other gelato spots offering a single option, this shop made two different flavors with two different types of plumcot. The Tiffany gelato is sour and refreshing, while the one made with Harmony is mixed with milk for a creamier texture. It is 5,000 won per cup.

You can also pair some coffee with a piece of plumcot jam cake. At Richmont Bakery in Mapo District, western Seoul, coffee lovers can enjoy a rolled almond cake with layers of plumcot jam. It costs 5,700 won.

The Mystery Brewing Company also in Mapo District has their own take on the plumcot. The brewery uses the acidity of the plumcot to cater to fans of sour beer. It costs 8,900 won for 480 milliliters (16 ounces), or 7,900 won for 500 milliliters when taking it to go.

BY LEE SUN-MIN [summerlee@joongang.co.kr]