Makgeolli Tasting and Brewing in Dangjin, Korea

Posted by on Feb 9, 2017 in Destinations, Korea, Travel Photo Thursday | 12 comments


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.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience

Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience

Just a few of the products offered for sale. With just a hint of honey, the rice cakes are delicious!


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


On the left is rice wine vinegar and on the right local honey.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


The surrounding fields lay fallow at the moment, but in a few weeks they’ll be waking up from their winter slumber.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


The Korean grandmothers treated us to an array of delicious Korean dishes for lunch, including seaweed soup.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience

Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


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. 


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


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.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


The next batch of rice is steaming


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


The fermentation room where everything happens.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience

Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


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.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


We are treated to one final tasting, from a fresh batch, not yet bottled.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience

Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


Notice our jars of fermenting makgeolli on the table. In a few weeks, we’ll have our own fresh brew to drink at home.


Dangjin Traditional Brewing Experience


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.


Please welcome our co-hosts this week: Jan from Budget Travel Talk Ruth from Tanama Tales Rachel from Rachel’s Ruminations


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  1. This is a great idea of the Korean Government. I would love to do some day tours to learn more about the food and drink of the country.

    • Hi, Jan. I think so, too. This tour and the Temple Food Class were both government-sponsored. The content was excellent and the price was very affordable.

  2. This is my kind of outing! Can’t say I’ve ever tried it.

    • Jackie, come to Korea, and you can taste the Makgeolli and make your own. 🙂

  3. Now I understand what you are brewing in that FB photo you posted earlier this week. What a great tour you had and gave us. . .loved the sound of the rice cakes with a hint of honey!

    • Ha Ha, Jackie. Yep, that photo was of my makgeolli still 🙂 The honey is the perfect addition to the rice cakes. I didn’t buy any because I would eat them all!

  4. I like to do tours like these! Rural areas and food products go hand to hand in my book. I imagine how good the food prepared by the grandmas was. I have been to places were old ladies cook and the food has been phenomenal. Great to hear the government is developing certain routes into the rural areas. #TPThursday

    • Hi, Ruth. I love it when I go somewhere and hear that it’s the older ladies cooking. They know what they’re doing, and it’s always traditional.

  5. Is makgeolli similar to Japanese sake? It appears to undergo a similar process in its making. I visited a sake making place in Japan and then tastings afterwards. I rather liked the taste.

    • Hi, Kathy. It’s quite different I think. Makgeolli is white. If I remember correctly, sake is clear. I drank sake once, I forget the color. Is sake made from rice?

  6. This was so interesting! I don’t know anything about makgeolli but I’m pretty sure my husband would love to do this. All that food looks delicious and I’m sure just have that homemade goodness only grandmas can make.

    • Hi, Mary. The food was awesome.Grandmas are the best cooks.

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