Baekseolgongju Ihwaju

Sool #11 – Baekseolgongju

KOREAN NAME: 백설공주 REVIEW: Thick, boozy, intense – Baekseolgongju is totally unlike any makgeolli I’ve tasted before. And that’s because it is not actually makgeolli but a not-too-distant cousin called ihwaju (이화주). Ihwaju can be translated as “pear blossom liquor” and I’ve read that its origins can be traced back to the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392 CE). But,…

Majoong Makgeolli House

House #02 – Majoong

KOREAN NAME: 마중 LOCATION: Seoul, Insadong (서울, 인사동) OVERALL: Majoong is a joomak catering to people with deeper pockets who are looking for a wide selection of makgeolli. Which is not to say it’s snooty. This makgeolli house does a nice job of creating an atmosphere that is both relaxed and civilized. Despite the slightly…

Baeknyeon Chingu Makgeolli

Makgeolli #10 – Baeknyeon Chingu

KOREAN NAME: 백년친구 REVIEW: Baeknyeon Chingu can be translated as “100-Year Friend” (or, perhaps alternately “Friend for 100 Years”) which would suggest that this makgeolli plans to stand you in good stead for a long time. While I don’t doubt the brewers’ good intentions with such a playful name, this might be an on-again, off-again relationship.

Saeng Yoosangyoon Makgeolli

Makgeolli #09 – Saeng Yoosangyoon

KOREAN NAME: 생 유산균 REVIEW: Saeng Yoosangyoon is a no-frills makgeolli but I don’t mean this as a criticism. The slight carbonation, dry flavor, and faintly bitter aftertaste successfully pull off the less-is-more aesthetic which indicates that Jeju Makgeolli Brewery has really spent some time fine tuning Yoosangyoon. If you’re not a fan of dry makgeollis, it’s true…

Makgeolli Expo 2014

Makgeolli Expo 2014 Review

Another week, another makgeolli event! After the Daehanmingook Makgeolli Festival in Ilsan and the Insadong Makgeolli Festival, I will admit it – I was feeling a little makgeollied out. But I’m an honest person and I believe you can’t call in a sick day to work if you’re not really sick. Same with booze-related events…

Neurin Maul Makgeolli

Makgeolli #08 – Neurin Maeul Saeng Makgeolli

KOREAN NAME: 느린마을 생 막걸리 REVIEW: Neurin Maeul has a lot of sediment. Even after a good shake, I was still pouring white clumps into my bowl. But this is not a critique – Neurin Maeul is pleasantly creamy and thick, and the clumps actually made me feel that I got the makgeolli from a country farmhouse as…

Ggwalla Makgeolli House

House #01 – Ggwalla

3.27.15 UPDATE: Ggwalla has closed its doors and the space will become a Kyochon Chicken. R.I.P. Drunken Otter. KOREAN NAME: 꽐라 LOCATION: Seoul, Konkuk University Station (서울, 건대입구) OVERALL: The atmosphere is not great and the food is a bit pricey for what it is. The only thing this place really has going for it is a…

Makgeolli Expo 2014

Makgeolli Expo 2014

It seems like October and November are just chock-full of makgeolli events! Two weeks on the heels of the Insadong Makgeolli Festival, Seoul will see the Makgeolli Expo take place from Wednesday, November 12 to Saturday, November 15 at the COEX Trade Center near Samseong Station. However, unlike the previous makgeolli events, there will be…

Makgeolli Festival Insadong

2014 Makgeolli Festival Insadong Review

The 2014 Makgeolli Festival (막걸리 페스티벌) took place over four days last week – Thursday, October 30th to Sunday, November 2nd – in Seoul’s Insadong (인사동) neighborhood. We showed up on the closing day of the festival and the area was bustling with tourists out shopping and enjoying the live performances, like marching bands and…