Makgeolli, Blooming in Jeonju
Makgeolli, Blooming in Jeonju
  • Kim Dan-bi reporter
  • 승인 2010.03.17 09:04
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Where do you think is the most famous area for taste in our country? It would be Jeolla-do. In particular, Jeonju is famous for bibimbap. Besides, Jeonju has produced Leegangju, which was one of the three famous alcohols in the Joseon Dynasty. The recently popular makgeolli is a source of pride for Jeonju. Since old times, makgeolli has embraced the joys and sorrows of common people. It consulted their pocketbooks. The upward popularity tendency of this makgeolli is unusual. Various media introduce the secret of makgeolli. In Japan, it is popular to people of all ages and both sexes. Makgeolli is even upstaging soju and beer, which were more popular and its popularity is rising rapidly! Moreover, Jeonju leads in the popularity of makgeolli. What is the difference between makgeolli in Jeonju and that in other cities? Let’s fall into the fascination of makgeolli!

- Unique Jeonju Makgeolli

Every year, Jeonju hosts the International Fermented Food Expo, which exhibits and sells various fermented foods such as kimchi, doenjang, and makgeolli. Among them, makgeolli is by far the most popular of all to foreigners. In every expo, the Japanese don’t spare the highest praise about makgeolli. Makgeolli of Jeonju is exported to Japan. The reason why Jeonju makgeolli gains popularity is that it is acknowledged for its taste, quality and safety. It was proven scientifically that makgeolli is good for diet, so Japanese women loved and enjoyed it. Makgeolli manufacturers in Jeonju made makgeolli with rice produced in Jeonju, wheat, blackbean and fresh water. The Jeonju makgeolli has a cool taste and abundant nutrition. Also, the manufacturers changed their old traditional system into a system with modern equipment. They used long-term nonperishable paper packs instead of bottle. In doing so, they take loads off consumers’ minds regarding hygiene. This paper pack is made with environmentally friendly materials which will raise the reputation of Jeonju makgeolli.

- Makgeolli streets in Jeonju

The popularity of makgeolli within Jeonju is as high as in foreign countries. Proving its high popularity, many makgeolli streets have formed in Jeonju: in Seosin-dong, Samcheon-dong, Pyeonghwa-dong, and Gyeongwon-dong. Among them, Samcheon-dong is the most famous place for makgeolli. In this place, about 40 makgeolli shops are crowded. In the past, there were bars which sold beer or soju. But due to the continuing economic downturn, they changed to selling cheap makgeolli. The reason why makgeolli streets are popular is that every store serves plentiful appetizer dishes with benevolent hearts. There is nothing exciting like waiting for new appetizer dishes whenever you order more makgeolli. Also, the benevolent hearts of the owners who give the appetizer dishes with unlimited refills make you remember makgeolli and come again. Makgeolli streets are an enjoyable place to people of diverse generations who seek nostalgia.

- Jeonju Traditional Wine Museum

There is a pavilion which shows the production process of traditional alcohol in the Jeonju Korean Traditional Wine Museum, located inside the Jeonju Traditional Korean-style House Village. You can make alcohol by yourself and appreciate representative traditional alcohols in each region. Paper dolls show the process of making traditional alcohol to help people to understand. The alcohols made from the experience of making tradition alcohol are ripened and fermented in a ripening room. There is a regular class in the pavilion, so people can take the class and know about tradition alcohol more profoundly.

Makgeolli, the alcohol for common people, is preparing to jump to be an international alcohol rather than just a national alcohol. Jeonju is one of the regions which are trying to introduce tradition alcohol. It is launching into the global market by exporting Jeonju makgoelli. And Jeonju is captivating the tourists’ hearts who visited through word of mouth. In particular, the older generations indulge in reminiscence as they drink makgoelli. The specific Jeonju makgoelli, and the culture of Jeonju regarding makgoelli are the reasons the popularity of Jeonju makgoelli increases more and more.

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