Autumn is a wonderful season in Korea. The falling mercury signals cooling temperatures, the hues of the leaves change to burnt auburns and golds, and brewers rally together for the finest makgeolli events (ok, possibly the only makgeolli events) in the world. Here’s a list of the big three happening this year:
13th Annual Daehanmingook Makgeolli Festival
When: October 3-4
Hours: 10 am – 6 pm
Where: Ilsan Lake Park, Goyang, Gyeonggi-do
Site: www.takjoo.kr (All information in Korean. Use Internet Explorer to view the site.)
Notes: Of all the makgeolli events Takjoo Journals attended last year, this one was the best. The weather is perfect, Lake Park is a lovely venue, there are loads of performances and activities throughout both days, and, most importantly, brewers from all over Korea are vying for a chance to ply you with their makgeolli. Check out the review of last year’s event here.
October Makgeolli Festival
When: October 29-November 1
Where: Jarasum Island, Gapyeong-gun, Gyeonggi-do
Cost: TBA (it will either be free or under ₩5,000)
Notes: First off, big thanks to Makgeolli Mamas & Papas Korea (MMPK) for providing information about this festival in English. Last year, this event happened right here in Seoul and was called the Makgeolli Festival Insadong. If you read my review of last year’s event, you know that it was a bit lacking. However, with a new locale and the support and participation of MMPK, Makgeolli Makers, and Susubori Academy, it looks like it is going to be off-the-chain amazing. Will there be free tastings? Yes, of course. But you’ll also get the chance to take Susubori Academy’s Intro to Brewing Makgeolli course, and even participate in a makgeolli scavenger hunt. (I’m hoping it’s like an Easter egg hunt but with booze.) Finally, the event will showcase the Annual Expat Brewing Contest, which features many contestants from Susubori Academy. Really—anything you want to know about the festival, just follow the MMPK site link above.
Food Week Korea 2015
When: November 18-21
Where: COEX Convention Center, Seoul
Notes: If you still haven’t had your fill of makgeolli by the time November rolls around, COEX’s Food Week Korea convention should help slake your thirst. Like the Daehanmingook Makgeolli Festival, this is another smorgasbord of booze that just happens to be one giant corner of an even more giant food convention. You crawl your way to each booth, they pour you a glass, drink, rinse, wash, repeat. Just make sure to go with a friend: I got separated from mine and was so hammered, I ended up in the Seoul Jangsoo outfit. Hit the link for the photo and for the review of last year’s event.