International Wines and Spirits Expo 2016

When it rains it pours!  If you haven’t already marked your calendars for the Makgeolli Festival at Goyang, or the Korean Traditional Liquor and Food Festival at Namsangol, then you might as well do that and add another!  One of the biggest events of the year in the alcohol industry is happening for a short three days starting on Thursday this week.

Held at COEX, this exhibition shows wines, spirits, sake and yes of course Korean traditional alcohol! There will be exhibitors from 200 companies spanning 20 countries.  We know first hand that there are some artisan brewers showcasing at the exhibition, so if you have any time feel free to get over to COEX and show them support…and of course taste some truly excellent brews!

Wine and spirits expo

 

Industry Show Days:   Thursday April 20th – Friday April 21st

Public Day:  Saturday April 22nd

Time:  10am – 6pm (5pm on Saturday)

Where:  COEX Exhibition Centre

Cost:  20,000won

For more details on how to get there and what’s going on visit here.

The spring season for makgeolli festivals and expos continues!!

Makgeolli Brewing Certificate Program 2016

TEaching time
We are officially in Year 3 of the English language Makgeolli Brewing Certificate Course, and we are excited to announce this year’s course dates and lineup!  After much feedback from last year regarding extended scheduling and time constraints, we have adjusted the course into two modules which will follow a weekly schedule every Monday evening from 7pm – 10pm.  The first module will cover all the rice preparation techniques required to follow any recipe, with the second module offering a higher level of chemistry, analysis and commercial context.  Completion of each module will award you a certificate from Gyeonggi University and Susubori Academy.

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What Is Involved in Module 1:  Brewing Foundations?

This course is designed to equip you with all the various techniques that allow for not only following traditional recipes, but also experimenting and developing your own brew.  Each technique class will have a theoretical and practical component, as well as introducing a new recipe each week.  A tasting will be included in each class featuring completed recipes from each technique, as well as representing brews available on the market.

2016_MakgeolliCertificate_ClassSchedule-updated

         What is Involved in Module 2:  Practical Applications and Analysis?

After arming yourself with all the skills and techniques makgeolli brewing fundamentals, you can then choose to further your knowledge and brewing arsenal with this more in depth course.  More theory based, this course will focus on the scientific elements of makgeolli fermentation as well as cultural and industry perspectives.

Soaking Rice Makgeolli

Draining Rice

Do I Have to Take All Classes, or Can I Just Take a Few?

This year the course will be running as a full module.  In order to receive the certificate, you must sign up before the commencement of the course and attend all 8 classes.  However, if at the time of course commencement there are additional places available, these will be offered to the public on a first come first served basis.

     I’ve Taken a Class Last Year, Can I Use that Class as Credit for the 2016 Course?

Yes!  We welcome anyone who has taken an Intro or Intermediate Class last year.  In the event that the class you took is repeated in Module 1, you will receive a discount on that class so as only to pay for the materials used.  In your registration, be sure to specify which classes you have taken in the past to receive your new quote.

yeast and nuruk

Paul sticky

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is the Susubori Brewer’s Club?

This is an online forum for all experienced makgeolli brewers to share their experiences, issues and to share feedback on their brewing progress.  You can join the group here, and share your own experiences, ask questions and learn from others in the community.

How Much Does The Course Cost?

The full cost for each module is 450,000won all materials and tuition included.

Mak mixing

What is the Refund/Cancellation Policy?

If you sign up for the course and for some reason can no longer attend, refunds can only be offered before the commencement of the course.  Therefore please make sure you are 100 percent sure you will be able to attend before making your payment.  If in the event we are unable to hold the class due to low registration numbers or any unforeseen circumstances, your class fee may be refunded.

Graduates

How Do I Register?

Simply follow the link here to the course page here and click ‘Register’.

I Have More Questions!!

Go ahead and send us an email!  If there is anything you would like to ask us, please send an email to mmpkorea@gmail.com and we will do our best to answer it for you.

Makgeolli Class outside Susubori

We look forward to brewing, tasting and learning more about this amazing drink with you all 🙂

2015 Jarasum Makgeolli Festival – Wrap up

Jipyeong with Fifties Girls

As November oh so quickly rolls in, we say goodbye to yet another Makgeolli Festival, and this one was truly something special.  As many may know, the last Thursday of every October is designated as ‘Makgeolli Day’.  NurukEvery year from this day, and following through the whole weekend, you can always expect some kind of celebration in the name of our favorite rice brew.   In previous years we have seen various different festivals in Seoul, but this year marks the first event outside the capital, and sets a precedent for what may be a regular fixture on the ‘must-do’ calendar.

Favorite Fish Man

                                                        Jarasum (Jara Island) has been made famous by the annual Jazz festival, which brings exceptional artists from around the globe for a weekend of good music and outdoor fun.

This past weekend marked the inaugural Jarasum Makgeolli Festival, which set its sights on bringing together not just all the makgeolli from around the nation, but also bringing food pairings from makgeolli bars and local producers.

We were especially privileged to taste the fish from this master (pictured right), who grills some of the best Godingeo (고딩어) ever tasted.  He took festival friendliness to a new level, bringing our hungry Happy Hour guests some fresh grilled fish.  Look out for this guy next time, he knows what he’s doing 🙂

As for MMPK, we had a lot of work to do!

Dan Julz InstructingWe were so excited to have the opportunity to bring all the things that we have learned to a festival, bringing tastings galore.  For anyone who might have attended one of our meetings or tours, they know that we are passionate about supporting the smaller brewers on the market, and this was a chance to bring those hardworking brewers to the fore!  We offered Artisan Tasting Sessions, with a lineup curated to show the best of what is on offer in bars around Seoul.  All brews were aspartame free and had a variety of flavor profiles that appealed to a range of palates.  The best part about the sessions?  Being able to tell the stories behind every brew, and hearing the equally varied feedback on from our eager tasters.   Below is this year’s MMPK Artisan Tasting Lineup:

Artisan Tasting - CheonbihyangArtisan Tasting - Domun Daejak


 

 

 

 

 

 

Artisan Tasting - Gotaek Saengju

Artisan Tasting - Jahuihyang

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artisan Tasting - Mangangae Bichindal

Artisan Tasting - Samyangchoon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Llwy Julz Brewers TastingBut tasting wasn’t limited to just the Artisans, the expat brewing community also brought their entries for the fourth annual Susubori Academy Expat Makgeolli Brewing Contest.  For the past four years, expats in the makgeolli brewing community have been concocting their own special brews to compete for the title.  Last year Mark Salinas took the number one spot with a brew incorporating water and mugwart brought laboriously from a hike to Bukhansan (Bukhan Mountain).

 

 

Tasting Table

This year included a diverse and creative selection, with infusions and recipe experimentation the likes of which we had yet seen.  During the festival, whomever came to the booth could taste from the ten entrants and vote for their favorite.  The winners are yet to be announced, but we will be sure to update as soon as they come through!

Brewing Class MixingIf that wasn’t all, MMPK also teamed up with Makgeolli Makers & Susubori Academy to offer free Introduction to Brewing Makgeolli Classes.  Twice a day, both on Saturday and Sunday, visitors could get their basic grounding in the world of makgeolli brewing and take home their very own brew.

Saturday Morning Class Montage

 

And then there was the festival itself!

Rock Stage

The main tent in the middle of grounds was continually abuzz with musical performances and food stalls, getting particularly rowdy when it hit after 8pm 🙂  And as the days dawned with crisp air (albeit cold enough for eyebrow-sicles in the very wee hours), with blue skies and mountains as a backdrop, it was hard not to be in a good mood.  Tents lined up surrounding the main tent, giving out samples of their wares as well as exhibitions of Korea’s finest representations of alcohol.

3 makgeolli bottles I Makgeolli U

As each day came to a close, the MMPK tent went into Happy Hour mode.  With endless brews and endless meat on hand, crew and visitors ate and drank the night away under the clear, star filled sky until their toes were numb.

After all the preparation, anticipation and running of the event, there is just one thing that sticks in our minds as the most memorable.  The people of our community are what make these festivals not just possible, but also joyful and just a rollicking good time.   We are nothing if not the people who support us, and that was more than evident this past weekend.  So we would like to give a heartfelt ~ Thank You ~ to our Brewers, Volunteers, and Supporters (yes, you all get capitals 😉 ) because without you, we would would never have been able to have such an awesome event.

Hungover Chat

We can’t wait till next year for the next installment of the Jarasum Makgeolli Festival 🙂

Until then Mamas & Papas 🙂

 

Baesangmyeon Neurin Maeul Brewery Tour – September 6th

Sansawon Poster 3-01

Date: Sunday, September 6th.

Time: 9am – 6.30pm

Place: Pocheon City, Gyeonggido.

What:  Transportation, Lecture, Guided Tour, Lunch, Unlimited Tastings

Reservations: Here.

Enquiries: mmpkorea@gmail.com

You may have heard us waxing lyrical over the last couple of years about a Makgeolli called Neurin Maeul. It’s certainly been a favourite of ours and has proven to be a hit with many of you out there in the community. If you have tried this brew and loved it, or if you would like to taste it in it’s own environment (in the wild, so to speak), then what better way than to spend an easy Sunday at the beginning of Fall at one of the most scenically beautiful, well designed breweries in the country: the Sansawon Brewery and Museum owned by Baesangmyun. (Their site is here.)

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Sansawon is an enchanting place where traditional Korean architecture, and brewing practices are envisioned and realized with precision and a modern aesthetic. This may not be the only place where one can see brewing as it was carried out in years gone by, but it is certainly the only place of it’s size, scale and attention to detail. See the past, present and future of the makgeolli industry unfold before your very eyes.

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In the spring we were privileged to lead the first English language tour of the Sansawon brewery in the sleepy little town of Pocheon to our esteemed guests the Royal Asiatic Society Korea, and now we would like to open this day tour to the public starting in September.

About Baesangmyun

Baesangmyeon Brewery could arguably be called Korea’s first craft makgeolli brewery. With generations of history and tradition, they continue a commitment to creating quality products with attention to detail and a deep understanding of brewing principles. In an industry that has largely been characterized by the use of artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, Baesangmyeon has proven that with the right recipe, care and patience, a makgeolli brew can be produced that does not need additives. More than just makgeolli, Baesangmyeon is also exploring lost traditions by producing a range of inspired sojus and alcohols.

The Tour

We will leave Seoul at 9am, arriving at the brewery in Pocheon roughly 10:30am. We will begin with a tour of the museum which showcases a variety of artifacts from traditional brewing methods. We will explore the ways in which the Korean traditional alcohol industry has developed and changed, and learn about the history of Baesangmyeon Brewery. After touring the museum, we will then proceed to the classroom where we will have a presentation on how various traditional alcohols are made.

This will be followed by a guided tasting of a range of Baesangmyeon’s products where we will have the opportunity to contrast and compare different styles, flavors and techniques. We will then take a break for a picnic lunch outside in the beautiful grounds of Sansawon.

After lunch, we will begin our tour of the grounds. We will walk through the Hangari gallery where different alcohols are currently being aged, and learn about the machinery used over the years. After learning about the various aspects of the brewery, we will then have a final tasting of Baesangmyeon’s flagship makgeolli ‘Neurin Maeul’ in the specially designed outdoor bar, where the sweet fragrance of decades old alcohol catches the breeze as it blossoms from inside the large hangaris.

Finally you’ll have the chance to make any purchases you would like from the Brewery store before we  board the bus and we return to Seoul.

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How to Sign up

Tickets for the trip are on sale for 75,000KRW and are all inclusive of everything above. If you would like to make your reservation please fill out this form and let us know!

Come welcome the Fall at this beautiful spot, with good company and great craft booze.

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Were you on the R.A.S.K tour? Or have you visited this brewery before? We would to hear about your experience!! Drop us a line in the comments section!

Makgeolli Festival 2014

The weather is getting cooler and being outside is a pure joy, which means it’s the time of year for the annual makgeolli festival!  Every year in October, it’s a big month for the makgeolli and traditional liquor industry.  The last Thursday of October is designated as ‘Makgeolli Day’, and there are a number of festivals and events leading up to and including that week.  Two years ago there was a massive makgeolli festival held at World Cup Stadium Park in Sangam, and we can honestly say it was one of the best festivals we have ever been to.  Ever since, we have been eagerly awaiting its return, however last year it did not make an appearance in Seoul but rather there was one in Ilsan.  As such, we sadly missed it.  But this year we are much more on our game, and can say that it will be again held in Ilsan rather than World Cup Stadium Park. makgeolli festival poster 2014 Basically the festival is an exhibition of about 120 different makgeolli brews, and there are free tastings for all of them.  That’s a lot of tastings, and we can say from experience, prepare to make a day of it!  This festival runs on the first weekend of October, so this year that means this weekend October 4th & 5th at the Ilsan Culture Park.  Here is a quick overview:

When:  Saturday October 4th & Sunday October 5th 2014

Where: Ilsan Culture Park (일산문화공원)

How to Get There: Take the orange line 3 to Jongbalsan (정발산) station.  Exit 1 or 2 should be the best to get to the park, and it should be quite close.  Here is a map for orientation.

Cost:  Free

Schedule of Events:

Makgeolli schedule

Note: Each day starts at 10am and runs until 5:30 on Saturday, 6:00 Sunday

For more information about the festival in Korean, you can check out the article here.

 

Some happy makgeolli tasters at teh 2012 World Cup Park Makgeolli Festival
Some happy makgeolli tasters at the 2012 World Cup Park Makgeolli Festival

So if you want to get out and about and try a variety of makgeolli, get yourselves to Ilsan this weekend!  Happy Tasting 🙂

Asan Folk Festival 2013!!

This time of year is always a busy season for Makgeolli, and we are only now getting the time to collect ourselves and reflect on the past few months.  Back in October we had the annual Asan Folk Village Festival weekend.  MMPK teamed up with the always awesome Susubori Academy, along with their expat brewing instructors Becca Baldwin and Dan Lenaghan, to offer a weekend of open air makgeolli classes.

godubap in Asan

This year the classes were held over the course of two days, with the first class having the opportunity to stay overnight in the hanok village.  It was a beautiful moonlit night, and we all enjoyed a long night of country air and plenty of fresh makgeolli.

Makgeolli Class 2 Asan

Of course the highlight of the weekend was the Expat Brewing contest, where 8 creative makgeolli lovers came up with their own unique brew for the public to taste and rate.  This year saw some stiff competition, and the flavor combinations were nothing short of inspired.  The entries were as follows:

‘Jeolju’ – Becca Baldwin:  A 300 year old traditional Iyangju recipe with a lot of elbow grease in the making.

‘Sunrise Liquor’ – Dan Lenaghan:  An out-of-the-box Iyangju with red bean.

‘Baninja Reloaded’ – Julia Mellor: A revised (and much improved) version of last year’s entry; banana & ginger infused Iyangju.

‘Bad Seeds’ – Caroline Mahon:  A fragrant Danyangju with cardamon and cloves.

‘Creamy Cocoa Memories’ – Don Edwards:  A sweeter Danyangju inspiration incorporating cocoa and raisins.

‘Speckled Spice’ – Beryl Sinclair:  A spicy Iyangju with vanilla beans and black pepper.

‘Serious Cider’ – Staci Gray:  A carefully concocted ‘hard cider’ inspired Danyangju of apple and cinnamon.

‘Bae Saengang’ -Tyson Hanrahan:  A balanced Danyangju with pear and ginger flavorings.

Expat Brewers Info

We had two categories for the voting.  The first was the public vote, where attendees of the festival could taste and choose their favorite among the 8 brews.  And then we had the Brewer’s Choice Awards, where class takers, Susubori & MMPK Staff voted for their top three brews.

Public Vote

1st Place:  ‘Jeolju’ Becca Baldwin

2nd Place: ‘Baninja Reloaded’ Julia Mellor

3rd Place:  ‘Serious Cider’ Staci Gray

Brewers’ Choice Awards

1st Place:  ‘Serious Cider’ Staci Gray

2nd Place:  ‘Jeolju’ Becca Baldwin

3rd Place:  ‘Bad Seeds’ Caroline Mahon

Staci & Beryl Asan

All in all, we had a fabulous weekend in excellent makgeolli loving company, and we just can’t wait until next year.  A big thanks as always to our hard working collaborative makgeolli team at Susubori Academy, who pulled together to make the whole thing happen.  Check out the photo gallery below for a closer look at some of the action 😉

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Weekend Makgeolli Course in English!

MMPK is pleased to announce a very special event coming up next weekend.  Instead of our regular meeting, we will be teaming up with our expat brewing instructors Becca Baldwin & Dan Lenaghan, Muldwinda, Susubori, Chez Mak, and the Makgeolli Bar Association to offer a weekend course to learn all things makgeolli!  This is the first event of its kind, and we are thrilled to be able to put together such an awesome program.  Here is an overview of what is on offer:

Tasting Cups

Beginner Course at Chez Mak – Gangnam

Saturday Nov 2nd:     2:00pm – 5:30pm  Tasting Class

Sunday    Nov 3rd:      2:00pm – 6:00pm   Brewing Class:  Introduction to Makgeolli Brewing

Advanced Course at Muldwinda – Chungjeongno

Saturday Nov 2nd:   12:00pm – 2:30pm  Brewing Class:  How to Make Nuruk

Sunday   Nov 3rd:       2:00pm – 6:00pm  Tasting Class

Cost of the Whole 2 Day Course:  20,000won

Participants are able to choose which course suits their needs best, and then register for either Beginner or Advanced level.  Each course will have a limit of 15 spaces, so if you would like to sign up, send us an email at mmpkorea@gmail.com with your Name, Phone Number, and Course Level, and we will send you transfer details.

****Bonus****

For the first 15 people to complete their registration, you will receive a bottle of our expert instructors’ winning homebrew!  So send those emails and get those payments in quick 😉

yeast and nuruk

Intro to Makgeolli Brewing Class

It’s all about Homebrew this weekend!  If you missed your chance to come to our Asan Makgeolli Making Festival, never fear!  This Saturday at Susubori Academy there will be an ‘Intro to Makgeolli Brewing’ class.  It will be taught by experienced expat makgeolli brewers, so all in English for all those burning brewing questions.  If you would like more comprehensive details, check out the Facebook event page here

Date: November 17th

Time:  2pm-5pm

Cost:  35,000won

Location:  Susubori Academy, Chungjeongno

How to Register:   Send the organizers a message first via facebook or email at becca.baldwin@gmail.com or   dlenaghan@gmail.com

Deadline:  Thursday November 15th

 We will definitely be going to brush up on our skills, so hope to see you there!

Asan Makgeolli Making Success!

Last Saturday Mamas & Papas new and old made the trek out of Seoul to the Asan Folk Village to get our makgeolli making on.  The setting could not have been more perfect for a weekend out of town, and we were well occupied with all the traditional distractions at the festival.

When we arrived, the awesome team at Susubori, Hyojin and Haena had already set up ‘Camp Susubori’ in our own reserved hanok area.  The first thing we did was to dive into tasting our own makgeolli creations that some Mamas & Papas had made the week before.  A tasting tent had been set up featuring 8 different makgeolli inspirations made by expats and friends of Susubori Academy, along with a voting board for our tasting guests.

Among some of the combinations, Papa Stewart made a straight ginger makgeolli, Mama Beryl tried out a rosemary makgeolli, and Papa Dave’s version of his recipe ‘Pimp Juice’ tasted like Christmas eggnog in a glass.  As for our efforts, Mama Julia’s proudly named ‘Baninja’ incorporated banana and ginger, while Mama Monica’s attempts to recreate Thanksgiving dinner had pumpkin, cinnamon and brown sugar.

So who was the winner we hear you ask?  Well it’s no secret that Monica’ s ‘Pumpkin Pie’ makgeolli was a roaring success with 3 sheets filled with voting stars.  However a late entry by Rebecca and Dan on Sunday may have tipped the scales, as their persimmon infused makgeolli was undeniably delicious!  All in all we had an absolute blast around the tasting tent, watching everybody both love…..and not so love….our makgeolli creations.

And then came class time!  As the first class rolled in we were super excited to meet some new Mamas & Papas, and also to catch up with some old favorites.  After a short class with the expert a la makgeolli, Jo Hyojin, Mamas & Papas were itching to get their hands dirty and try out their fermenting skills.  Rice, nuruk and water were a mixin’, and our Mamas & Papas  were a brewin’!

Finally with proud grins and pots of potential makgeolli goodness in hand, it was time to kick back and pour each other a bowl of the folk village’s very own brew!  The second class soon arrived and had their chance to get down and ferment, and it wasn’t long before they joined the big long table of happy makgeolli brewers.
As the sun went down in our hanok oasis, Mamas & Papas began to slowly make their way back home.  The MMPK team and the Susubori Heroes spent the night relaxing, reveling and soaking up the moonlight in good company, well into the evening.

All in all it was everything we could have asked for in a traditional makgeolli making experience, and we are as always grateful to our super supportive (and patient!) friends Hyojin, Haena and the Susubori Academy.  We hope to be able to have more events like this sometime in the future, so watch this space!  See you soon Mamas & Papas 🙂

More Expats Learning Makgeolli

Let’s face it.  Makgeolli Mamas & Papas could never have been realized without the continued support of our mentor Jo Hyojin, aka Dr. Makgeolli, and the team at Muldwinda and Susubori Academy.

So we were delighted to come across an article recently which featured Susubori, Hyojin, and a cast of other expat makgeolli lovers talking, studying, learning and brewing our favorite drink.

As well as drinking makgeolli, brewing makgeolli can be just as fun, and Susubori offers a range from one day classes to full certification courses.  Reading this article, we were so excited to see others who are just as into learning, brewing….and drinking as much makgeolli as they can get their fill.  Best quote of the article:

“I would never get tired of makgeolli.”

– Steve L. Herman, Bureau Chief of Voice of America.

Well Said Mr. Herman, well said!

 

Check out the full article here, and if you want to check out Susubori their website is here (though only in Korean).

Have you studied at Susubori?  Have you ever learned how to make makgeolli?  Let us know know your thoughts!