Sool (술) is the Korean word for alcohol, liquor, BOOZE! And Takjoo Journals aims to look at all aspects of traditional sool, especially focusing on makgeolli (막걸리). Makgeolli (pronounced “mak-KUH-lee”) is a fermented alcoholic drink made from, among other ingredients, rice, water, and nuruk (누룩), a mixture of yeast, enzymes, and lactobacillus essential to brewing sool. It is often around 6% alcohol by volume, looks creamy-white, and has a sour-sweet taste; however, all these factors can vary wildly depending on ingredients and brewing techniques.
I am by no means an expert on sool but my hope for this blog is to share what I learn about South Korea’s traditional alcohol as it gains popularity internationally.
Makgeolli Brews: Reviews of commercially available bottled makgeolli, both unpasteurized and pasteurized.
Makgeolli-Related Brews: Reviews of commercially available brews that are made through different processes than typical makgeolli. For example, ihwaju, moju, oyangju, etc.
Canned Makgeolli Brews: Same as above only canned!
Makgeolli Houses: Reviews of makgeolli bars, which are also called joomak or makgeolli jib. I’ll predominately be visiting establishments in Seoul but I hope to expand the reviews to other cities.
Events & Activities: Notices and reviews of events and activities related to sool.
Random Notes & News: A space for me to explore observations, as well as aggregate any English-language news related to sool.
Homebrewing: A personal account of my foray into brewing my own sool.
FREQUENTLY USED TERMS
Sool: alcohol (on this site, it is used to signify all traditional Korean alcohol)
Joomak: traditional Korean bar serving makgeolli and cheongju
Yakju/Cheongju: two (mostly) interchangeable terms used to describe the clear liquor that is produced when makgeolli is brewed
Hangari: earthenware vessel used for brewing
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