"Craft Beer" means beer made in small breweries. Its characteristic is that it boasts diverse and distinctive flavors. Compared to the U.S., where there are about 4,000 breweries, Korea is still in the early stages of the craft beer revolution. It has only around 60 breweries. Jeju is known to be a good location for craft beer. Jeju Island has been recognized for its clear water since ancient times and has a strong culture of producing alcohol including Gosori, a type of traditional soju. More recently, craft beer brand Magpie built a brewery on the island. This was followed by the Jeju Beer Company which was made after five years of preparation with one of the world's most well know craft brands, Brooklyn Brewery. Let's meet this unique Jeju Craft Beer.
Magpie: Brewed on Jeju, born in Seoul
▲ A group tour at the Magpie Brewery
Four American and Canadian friends who loved beer gathered to create Magpie in 2012. It is a known brand that is the origin of Craft Beer in Korea. They first started their business in Itaewon, Seoul, and established a brewery in Jeju in March 2016 with the investment of Arario Museum, a well-known modern art museum. Magpie began using the slogan "Brewed on Jeju, born in Seoul."
▲ Magpie Brewery
Magpie's brand derives from the bird magpie, a symbolic bird believed to bring good news. Magpie hopes to bring good beer culture to Korea. The Magpie brewery is both modern and sensuous and situated in a vintage space created by renovating a citrus warehouse. On a brewery tour, which is only available on weekends, tourists can see brewing facilities and processes as well as try malt samples. Five types of core beer Kolsch, Pale Ale, Porter, IPA, and Gose, as well as three seasonal beers, are produced in the Jeju brewery.
If you do not have time to tour the Magpie brewery, you can visit the Magpie bar in Tapdong in Jeju. The sophisticated lounge bar has music and humorous posters that give it the feeling of a New York bar. Tourists and Jeju locals alike often visit this bar.
[Magpie brewery tour]
• Address: Jeju Special Self-Governing Province, Jeju City, Donghwecheon 1-gil 23 (Hwecheon-dong 1309)
• Operation time: Weekend (Sat, Sun) 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 4 p.m. and 5 p.m.
• Time Required: About 30 minutes
• Participation cost: \20,000 (including tour + testing + one beer)
※ Teenagers aged 8-18 : \10,000 (including a drink)
※ On-site payment
Reservation: Send reservation information (visit date, time, and number of participants) to firstname.lastname@example.org. Reservations can be made up to 2 days prior to the day of the visit
• Question: 070-4228-5300
Jeju Beer Company, the first Asian sister company of New York's 'Brooklyn Brewery’
▲ Jeju Beer Brewery
The Jeju Beer Company is based a ten-minute drive away from Jeju's Hyeopjae Beach. It is a brewery that has been built at a place where industrial materials and agricultural machinery factories are assimilated. It is Korea's largest craft beer brewery and is made in collaboration with Brooklyn Brewery. The newly built brewery applies Brooklyn Brewery's techniques and Jeju's pure natural ingredients to make a unique craft beer. 'Jeju Wit Ale', which has a delicate citrus flavor using Jeju's clean water and organic citrus peel, is the signature beer.
▲ A group tour at the Jeju Beer Brewery
The tour course stimulates your five-senses and lets you easily understand the basic production process and principles of craft beer. The brewery tour runs from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. from Friday to Sunday every hour. It follows the process from the start to the finish of the craft beer production process. The most interesting space is the Brewery Laboratory. This is a space where you can smell or taste the various ingredients used to make the unique taste and flavor of the breweries craft beer. As you experience unfamiliar ingredients, you will steadily and easily understand the process. Once the tour is over, you can enjoy fresh Jeju Wit Ale in the tasting room.
ⓒ Jeju Weekly 2009 (http://www.jejuweekly.com)
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