냉 is a word frequently occurring on signs. It means ‘cool’. Its Chinese character is also frequently used instead of the hangul 冷. This post will list some example usages of 냉.
First, the sign below indicates that this restaurant has an air conditioner, a sign you might want to see in the hot summer. In this phrase 냉방중, 냉 means cool, while 방 refers to the room, and 중 means that something is in progress — ie. the room is in a cool state.
This is a sign of a 전기 (electrical/electronics) shop. The word furthest to the right on the sign is 냉동 meaning refrigeration. The word for refrigerator itself is 냉장고.
This sign found on the window of a subway car (지하철) reads 약냉난방차. In this context, the word 약 means weak, while 난 indicates warmth, and 차 refers to the subway car. Thus, what the sign means is that the air conditioner is weak in this car, so it is suitable for someone who doesn’t like overly air-conditioned spaces.
In this cartoon, the two men are complaining (found in a Subway Public Service Ad) about the train car being too hot, while the woman on the right complains about how cold she is.
A well-known Korean cold noodle dish is of course 냉면 – the word 면 refers to noodles. This flyer advertises a 냉면 restaurant.
냉콩국수 is also a noodle dish which is served cold. It is particularly popular in summer, while 냉면 seems more likely to be eaten year-round. In the sign below, the Chinese character for 냉 has been used instead of the hangul.
Another frequent case of 냉 is at coffee shops. This street stand is selling 커피 (coffee) and also 냉커피 (ice coffee).
In this sign on the side of a vending machine, rather than ice coffee is labeled as 얼음커피 rather than 냉커피. 얼음 means ice.