Seochon Food Street Tour

We went to Seochon, Seoul to try Gwanghwamun Makgeolli for the first time

Find out about one of the best food streets in the middle of Seoul 😎 We visit one of the most famous galbi restaurants in the area and I try my best to tell the difference between Jipyeong and Gwanghwamun makgeolli….*spoiler alert* it’s not easy. The food was fantastic, the makgeolli was great and we even had time for a beer at the end before our baby woke up!

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Seoul Jangsoo vs InSaeng Makgeolli

Seoul Jangsoo has long been the main, and sometimes only, bottle of makgeolli readily available in the capital but with the recent influx of ricewine from other areas and cities the Seoul Jangsoo Brewery decided to launch a new bottle on the market and so InSaeng (Life) makgeolli was born. But which makgeolli is the best? I decided to put them both to the taste test and where better to do so than to go for a walk up Namsan Mountain.

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#84 Soseongju Plus (소성주 플러스)

Made with only domestic rice unlike the standard version (review here) which uses a mixture of both domestic and foreign rice, ‘Plus’ is Incheon’s answer to Jangsoo ’10 day’ makgeolli, the ‘Plus’ being because it is domestic rice only. It is a little sour and has a lot of carbonation so make sure you have your cup at the ready. It is a simple makgeolli which is light and easy to drink but it is kind of easily forgettable as there isn’t really anything ‘Plus’ about it that sets it apart from the standard Soseongju and there’s definitely nothing to justify a 200W higher price tag. Continue reading #84 Soseongju Plus (소성주 플러스)

#83 Namhansanseong Makgeolli (남한산성 막걸리)

It’s a very light and smooth makgeolli, it has no carbonation which means you can make sure to mix it 100%. It seem to be becoming more and more popular in restaurants in the Gyeonggi area  and offers a great alternative to the Jangsoo and Jipyeong that so often takes us the fridge space.  It is a really easy makgeolli to drink and is definitely one for the purists and newbies alike. 

Continue reading #83 Namhansanseong Makgeolli (남한산성 막걸리)

#82 Hongcheon DongDongJu (홍천 동동주)

There is no real carbonation in Hongcheon DongDongJu and it has a slightly yellow in colour. It is a little sweet but that being said it does have the smell and feel of a makgeolli that you’d get served in the back streets of traditional places like Insadong and Jeonju. It unfortunately doesn’t have the sourness or the bite of the more “traditional” rice wines but it is a good makgeolli and the large bottles mean that you can really make good use of that kettle you bought and left in the cupboard.

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#81 Won Tak Makgeolli (원탁 막걸리)

As you can see from the labelling Won Tak Makgeolli is closely associated with one-time K-Pop star Tak Jae-hoon, he of Country Kko Kko fame. It joins ‘Young Tak Makgeolli’ as one of a few rice wines trying to capitalize on the recent surge in popularity of ‘craft’ makgeolli. The drink itself is decent enough, it’s smooth without really tasting too much but it does have a slight sour aftertaste. It also has a slight carbonation.

Continue reading #81 Won Tak Makgeolli (원탁 막걸리)

#80 Cheongsong Apple Makgeolli (청송 사과 막걸리)

It’s not going to win any awards for its apple flavor any time soon but Cheongsong Apple makgeolli is an incredibly smooth and silky makgeolli. You cant’t really feel any evidence from the apples in either in it’s taste nor it’s smell but what it might lack in fruitiness it more than makes up for in being a really good rice wine which I could have drank all night……although I sometimes feel that says more about me being Scottish than it does about the quality or taste of the alcohol I’m drinking.


Continue reading #80 Cheongsong Apple Makgeolli (청송 사과 막걸리)

#79 Seoul Jangsoo Moonlight Citrus 달빛유자)

It does look exactly like the normal Seoul Jangsoo makgeolli, I was expecting it to have a more ‘citrus’ colour to be honest. It does taste a little of citrus but only slightly and really does taste more like a heavily watered down orange cordial juice. It is a fairly new addition to the Jangsoo Brewery’s portfolio but I severely doubt that it will become as popular as Insaeng (see video review at bottom of post) or even the ginseng flavored Jangsoo.

Continue reading #79 Seoul Jangsoo Moonlight Citrus 달빛유자)

#78 Seobaeksan Makgeolli

Seobaeksan Makgeolli is definitely one of my favorites, it has a slightly bitter aftertaste and is a little thicker than ‘Jangsoo style’ ricewines which is always a plus in my book as I often find the more watery makgeolli to also be pretty tasteless. It has no carbonation and is a slightly darker yellow colour than a lot of other ricewines. It is often referred to as the ‘ajossi makgeolli’ which I’m not sure is to do with the clientele who drink it or its bitterness 🙂

Made by the Daegang Yangjojang Brewery, Seobaeksan is generally found in good makgeolli and jeon restaurants and if you are lucky enough to live near a fantastically stocked Mart then you will should find a bottle or two loitering in their fridges. It goes amazingly well with both gamja-jeon (potato) and kimchi-jeon. The bottle in the photo above was bought in the exceptional Mapo Fisheries Market, a ‘makgeolli hunt’ you can watch in the YouTube clip below.

  • Price : Cost around 3000W in makgeolli bars
  • A little bitter and thick
  • Pair with a jeon and you are sorted
  • Alcohol : 6%