#38 Geumjeongsan Seong Makgeolli (금정산성 막걸리)

Geumjeongsan Seong, or Geumjeong Mountain Fortress Makgeolli is widely regarded as one of Korea’s finest rice wines and to be honest it’s difficult to argue with that accolade. It’s a little thicker than a lot of other makgeolli out there and that becomes even more apparent when you’ve had a couple of bottles of something else before it. It has a distinctive taste, which lingers long after you’ve finished your cup and has an aroma that would make one of those pretentious wine drinkers sniff over and over. It is a little bitter but then again I am beginning to think most of the best ones are. Continue reading #38 Geumjeongsan Seong Makgeolli (금정산성 막걸리)

#37 Sangdong Saeng Takju (상동 생타주)

Made by Sangdong Brewery in Gimhae City Sangdong Saeng Takju has a very distinctive and sweetly sour taste which could suck in the jaws of even the hardest of faces. It has a particularly short shelf-life of roughly 10 days which is great for giving you an excuse to crack a bottle open after you’ve already upset the wife with an all-day session. It’s really light without being overly watery and is a pretty damn good rice wine once you prise your jaws back open that is although the strong sweet and sourness does mean that it’s not going to be a two-bottle affair. Continue reading #37 Sangdong Saeng Takju (상동 생타주)

#33 Dongrae San Seong Makgeolli (동래산성 막걸리)

With it’s elaborate Chinese lettering label Dongrae San Seong Makgeolli is one of Busan’s lesser known rice wines, so much so that it took me almost six trips nine months apart to get my hands on another bottle. They tend to change their label design pretty often which can make it appear even more elusive. Like most Busan offerings it has a slightly sour/bitter taste and has more of a bite to it than it’s Seoul competitors. It has a shelf-life or around a month due to being non-pasteurized so make sure your calendar, or fridge, isn’t too full. Continue reading #33 Dongrae San Seong Makgeolli (동래산성 막걸리)

#32 ‘Premium’ Busan Saengtak Makgeolli (프리미엄 생탁 막걸리)

If something is good, let’s mess around with it and try to make it better seems to have been the call to arms down South as the always reliable Busan Saengtak Makgeolli underwent a makeover and lo and behold both a ‘Premium’ and a ‘Mild’ version were conceived. The ‘mild’ is something I may never drag myself to blog about but I was intrigued to see how they would take a makgeolli that has slowly grown into one of my favourites and make it better….spoiler alert….they made it 1% stronger. Continue reading #32 ‘Premium’ Busan Saengtak Makgeolli (프리미엄 생탁 막걸리)

#25 Taehwaro Makgeolli (태화루 막걸리)

Boasting over 50yrs of brewing craftsmanship, Taehwaro (태화루) would appear to be the favourite makgeolli among the locals of Ulsan. It is a little similar in body to Busan’s Seangtak (review here) although it does earn a 2nd place when it comes to taste comparisons. Taehwaro has a rather mild taste and while not bland it wouldn’t hold it’s own in a makgeolli “Pepsi challenge”.  Taehwaro also only comes in at 5.5% alcohol content which might explain why Ulsan is the powerhouse of Korean industry with some of the largest factories in the world and the country’s least hungover employees. Continue reading #25 Taehwaro Makgeolli (태화루 막걸리)

#23 Busan Dongbaek Makgeolli (부산 동백 막걸리)

Brewed by the Dongbaek Yangjo Brewery who also make a tomato makgeolli, yip that’s not a mistake, Busan Dongbaek Makgeolli is a light and refreshing rice wine that is dangerously easy to drink. It’s the kind of drink that you could easily drink a few bottles in a beer garden on a sunny day. It isn’t carbonated and so you can feel free to shake away, which is good as it takes a little while to fully mix.

Continue reading #23 Busan Dongbaek Makgeolli (부산 동백 막걸리)

#17 Hapcheon Makkoli (합전 막걸리)

Hapcheon Makgeolli hails from South Gyeongsang and has a pretty tangy and slightly bitter flavour which can be slightly overpowering the first sip or so. Like most makgeolli from the area, Hapcheon is pretty sour if you are more used to brands such as Seoul Jangsoo or Busan Seangtak (review here) and it does explain why the locals are famous for adding Sprite to their kettles! It’s unpasteurized and as such has roughly around a 1mth ‘fridge life’. Continue reading #17 Hapcheon Makkoli (합전 막걸리)