KOREAN NAME: 유기농 막걸리
REVIEW: Yuginong was a bottle I had earmarked for trying in the future but it wasn’t till I finally picked it up that I realized it’s made by Baesangmyun Brewery. Obviously a good sign as I have yet to try a bad brew from them. And with the appellation Yuginong—literally organic—this brew promised to be something special.
All this lead up is to say that maybe I hyped it up to myself too much. In fact, Yuginong is lacking in the same two areas as many other pasteurized makgeollis: character and depth. The nose is very faint and the taste is not much different. A slightly tangy note up front quickly fades into a flavor best described as watery and paper-thin. After you’ve had a few more sips, you’ll notice a filmy mouthfeel that retains a hint of that first sour-sweet flavor but it’s not enough to keep you coming back.
Yuginong is by no means a bad makgeolli but, seeing as how it is not much different from Sinseon, Baesangmyun’s other widely-available, pasteurized makgeolli, and Sinseon happens to be a fraction of the price, there’s no real reason to buy Yuginong. And, if cost is not an issue, I’d recommend Neurin Maul Ihwaju: at ₩16,000, it’s only a couple thousand more expensive, and it’s a pasteurized makgeolli that still manages to be complex, rich, and delicious.
BREWERY: Baesangmyun Brewery (배상면주가)
There is also an English-language site for the brewery they set up in Illinois, USA: http://www.slowcitybrew.com/
ORIGIN: Gyeonggi-do, Pocheon (경기도, 포천시)
PURCHASED: Seoul, Express Bus Terminal, Shinsegae Department Store (서울, 고속 터미널, 신세계)
Retail is ₩14,000.
AVAILABILITY: Like Neurin Maul Ihwaju, your best bet is to get Yuginong at Shinsegae or at the Neurin Maul Brew Pubs in Seoul. Check out this in-depth post at Makgeolli Mamas and Papas Korea to read reviews about the different locations and get business information.
ALCOHOL CONTENT: 7%
INGREDIENTS: organic Korean rice, wheat coenzymes, purified enzymes, leavened yeast, citric acid, purified water
VOLUME: 700 ml