Head Brewer of Samhae Soju-ga Talks Sool

A recent video from the site Great Big Story features none other than Samhae Brewery’s own Kim Taek-Sang and his thoughts on one of Korea’s most precious traditions and a subject near to my heart: sool! I’ve had the pleasure of meeting the man himself and can honestly say that he is not only an excellent…

Midam Yeonyeob Saeng Takju

Sool #62 – Midam Yeonyeob Saeng Takju

KOREAN NAME: 미담 연엽 생탁주 REVIEW: In terms of the blog, my biggest regret of the past year is that I did not review one Midam brew. There are some breweries making truly wonderful concoctions these days but, in my estimation, when considering the pinnacle of both interesting and delicious brews, you’d be right in thinking Midam…

Jeongleejuga

House #10 – Jeongleejuga

KOREAN NAME: 정이주가 LOCATION:  Jeollanam-do, Gwangju, Dong-gu (전라남도, 광주,  동구) OVERALL: Jeongleejuga is the signature joomak in Gwangju and, as such, a necessary must visit for anyone interested in the sool scene. They maintain a small but nicely balanced stock of inexpensive aspartame makgeolli with pricier all-natural, premium makgeolli. Everything we ordered from the food menu was…

The Traditional & the Modern: Ulsan’s Boksoondoga Brewery

Ulsan typically conjurers up images of a blue-collar city defined more by its warehouses and factories than anything else. And yet something pleasantly unexpected also calls Ulsan its home: Boksoondoga Brewery. Julie Jackson has published a delightful write-up on the successful family business that aspires to stay close to its roots. From the Korea Herald article: “My grandmother…

Traditional Liquors Diversify, Enrich Tastes in Korea

Earlier this year, we heard whispering of changes in Korean liquor laws which could be huge for the craft brewing industry. In effect, the production minimums for breweries has been significantly lowered making it possible for burgeoning brewers with a business plan to potentially make their mark on the industry. The Korea Herald article that…

Homemade Makgeolli at Seattle’s Girin

If you’re in or visiting the U.S., there are few places where you can try some decent makgeolli. But things are changing for the better with the help of Girin. This Seattle restaurant is brewing up some homemade sool and the faithful have heard. From the Eater Seattle article: The Girin team works Pacific Northwest ingredients into…

Homebrew #08 – Podoju

I didn’t think I’d return so quickly to fruit-infused makgeolli but then here came grape season and my relatives had decided that I needed a box (not a bunch—a box!) of Gapyeong grapes. What to do with so many grapes? Make booze, of course! It helps that I had already seen a successful grape makgeolli brew over…

Jarasum Makgeolli Festival 2016

Jarasum Makgeolli Festival 2016 Review

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! For some that’s Christmas, but for makgeolli lovers (at least those in the northern hemisphere) the temperatures are cooling, making for better brewing conditions, and makgeolli festivals abound. These days, it seems there may not be an event in the land that can compare to the spectacle…

Makgeolli Hakkyo

HOUSE #09 – Makgeolli Hakkyo

KOREAN NAME: 막걸리 학교 LOCATION:  Seoul, Dongjak-gu, Isu Station (서울, 동작구, 이수역) INTRODUCTION: Makgeolli Hakkyo is, without too much exaggeration, an oasis in the makgeolli-barren wasteland that is south of the river. And even better: it is a heavy when stacked up against its more numerous—and probably better known—competition in the north. This makes sense considering Wooki,…

Kettle Pic

Takjoo Journals’ Second Anniversary

Two years ago I stopped by a corner store in my neighborhood and and bought a weird, plastic bottle of booze. After a few bemusing sips, I thought, “I need to remember this makgeolli so I never, ever make the mistake of buying it again.” Thus, Takjoo Journals was born! But, I am grateful for this bad bottle because it has led me to…