I ate at a Korean restaurant the other day, and was served 8-10 different little dishes they call banchan at the start of the meal, from their famous kimchee to bites of fish and vegetables, which was a real delight to sample. Some questions about how Koreans typically eat this:
Are you supposed to eat these mostly fiery foods with rice, or alone? Are you supposed to load up your side plate with the various dishes like at a buffet, or are you meant to take mouthfuls directly from each banchan plate? What is the long silver spoon supposed to be used for? Why did they serve the rice in a metal bowl (I assume this is traditional) when it's so hot to pick up...do they expect diners to pick at it with chopsticks while holding the hot metal bowl with a napkin? Are you supposed to eat banchan dishes throughout the meal even after the main dish is served?
Any answers would be good to know!