This past weekend saw me traveling to the Korean countryside to enjoy Makgeolli (Korean rice wine) tasting and brewing. Welcome to week 316 (2/9/2017) of Travel Photo Thursday.
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Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience
The Korean government is making a lot of money available to tour operators right now. Their goal is to introduce the Korean countryside to both Koreans and overseas visitors through the promotion of local businesses in small towns and cities outside of Seoul and the larger urban centers.This tour, Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience, hosted by Julia and Dan offered the opportunity to visit several businesses in and around the city of Dangjin.
Our first stop was in a small village on the outskirts, where Korean grandmothers operate a business called allmeone creating products from the local rice. We learned that starting a business in rural Korea is not always easy, but persistence pays off! We had the opportunity to purchase rice cakes and other products produced on site. Then we were treated to a delicious homemade lunch prepared especially for us by these lovely grandmas.
Just a few of the products offered for sale. With just a hint of honey, the rice cakes are delicious!
On the left is rice wine vinegar and on the right local honey.
The surrounding fields lay fallow at the moment, but in a few weeks they’ll be waking up from their winter slumber.
The Korean grandmothers treated us to an array of delicious Korean dishes for lunch, including seaweed soup.
Then it was off for a tour of Dangjin’s rice processing plant, which is a state of the art automated facility run by a small handful of workers. We each left with a bag of local rice for our rice cookers. Check us out, standing in front of the plant with our bags of rice in hand.
Makgeolli Tasting and Making
Last, but not least, we arrived at the 110-year-old Shinpyeong Brewery to learn all about makgeolli tasting and making.
The next batch of rice is steaming
The fermentation room where everything happens.
Then it was to the tasting room where we tasted and ranked four qualities of makgeolli, and guess what? Most of us preferred the lower priced product to the premium (shhh).
Three generations of Kims have run the brewery. Here we have the elder Mr. Kim and his son Daniel ready to share more information about the brewing business and their family operation.
We are treated to one final tasting, from a fresh batch, not yet bottled.
Notice our jars of fermenting makgeolli on the table. In a few weeks, we’ll have our own fresh brew to drink at home.
Our final stop was at the company store to make some makgeolli purchases. Then it was a drive back through the Korean countryside to the hustle and bustle of Seoul.
Have you ever imbibed in a glass or two, or brewed your own makgeolli? Let us know in the comments.
This my second time to make a batch. You can read all about my first makgeolli making adventure here.
If you’re planning to visit Seoul, and you want a hands-on traditional brewing experience or tasting contact Julia or Dan via their Facebook page.
You can browse the Travel Photo Thursday archives here.
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