Soola Soongokju

Sool #70 – Soola Soongokju (Winter)

KOREAN NAME: 술아 순곡주 (겨울) REVIEW: From an outsider’s perspective, Soolawon does everything possible to set their brews apart from other premium sool producers. Yes, they make makgeolli and cheongju and they also attend the big events but that’s about where the comparisons stop. Soolawon, from website to product, takes great care to craft a refined, stylish,…

Miinju

Sool #67 – Miinju

KOREAN NAME: 미인주 REVIEW: Miinju is the cheongju—or yakju, if you prefer—from Miin Takju. But that is really where the connection stops as Miinju is far above its takju counterpart. In many ways, it checks all the boxes for a smooth drinking cheongju. It’s boozy but not intense; flavorful but not weird or overbearing; and a pleasant…

Songhwaju

Sool #65 – Midam Songhwaju

KOREAN NAME: 송화주 약주 REVIEW: From reading my review of Midam Yeonyeob Seoktanju, it’s clear that I am an unapologetic fan of Midam’s sool. After all, there’s a lot to appreciate. She runs a family owned and operated brewery dedicated to making small batches of high-end brews that are all variations on the juk, or porridge, recipe…

Makgeolli Origins (Groove Magazine)

MMPK’s own Julia Mellor with a write up on Korean traditional alcohol that goes beyond makgeolli and the ubiquitous green bottles. If you’re looking for a little background on where brewing begins in Korea, this is the perfect start. From the Groove Magazine article: At the heart and soul of all Korean traditional alcohol is nuruk, without which…

Pungjeong Sagye

Sool #59 – Pungjeong Sagye Chun

KOREAN NAME: 풍정 사계 춘 REVIEW: Pungjeong Sagye Chun (PSC) cheongju is one of the unexpectedly delightful finds that I came across at COEX’s Wines & Spirits Expo 2016. Hwayang’s booth was not ostentatious, nor did they make an overt effort to attract visitors. Even after stopping and asking for a sample, the rep at the booth simply let PSC do…

Sejong Daewang Eoju Yakju

Sool #55 – Sejong Daewang Eoju Yakju

  KOREAN NAME: 세종대왕 어주 약주 REVIEW: After lots of disappointment with the brews on offer at COEX’s Food Week Korea 2015, I was pleasantly surprised to run into “traditional liquor teacher” Jang Jung-su, the owner and master brewer behind Jangheui Doga. Jang explained that Jangheui has two main brews, a Yakju and Takju (read: makgeolli)…

Aoi Sora

HOUSE #08 – Aoi Sora

KOREAN NAME: 아오이 소라 LOCATION:  Seoul, Itaewon (서울, 이태원) LOOK & ATMOSPHERE: If you take a walk down the street behind Itaewon’s mosque, you’ll see a curious sight. Shabby hardware stores, halal restaurants, ddeokbokki joints, and artists’ tiny studio-shops are all crammed into a weird, mixed up little alley that makes you feel like you’ve entered…

Food Week Korea 2015 Review

Food Week Korea 2015 Review

Last year, COEX’s Food Week Korea featured something I called the Makgeolli Expo but may have actually been Korean Traditional Liquor Grand Festival. Either way, it was really, truly awesome – just check the review! If you weren’t in attendance at last year’s event, it is difficult to do justice to how exceptional it was. Loads of brewers…

Susubori & Brewing Terms

Makgeolli Brewing Terms

QUICK REFERENCE Wonju: the result of fermenting steamed rice, water, and nuruk Cheongju/Yakju: the yellowish translucent liquid that rises to the top of wonju (distilled, cheongju becomes soju) Takju: the rice particulate that settles to the bottom of wonju (mixed with water, takju becomes makgeolli) Danyangju: one-step fermentation process Iyangju: two-step fermentation process Samyangju: three-step fermentation process Sayangju: four-step fermentation process Oyangju: five-step fermentation…