Makgeolli now biggest seller in Korea

The November edition of my "What Will They Think of Next?" cocktail series featured makgeolli, the traditional Korean fermented rice wine.

Now comes a report from the South Korean newspaper Chosun Ilbo that "Makgeolli is rising in popularity in Korea as more people are health-conscious even when it comes to drinking."

Couple that with the relatively inexpensive prices of makgeolli products, and you have an 87% increase in sales from January to October compared to the same period last year, with younger consumers leading the way.

According to convenience store chain GS25, revenues from makgeolli sales in September overtook those for whiskey for the first time with sales of the fermented rice wine coming in third place after beer and soju," Chosun Ilbo reports.

Makgeolli, also known as takju, is made from rice which accounts for its milky appearance. It is made by fermenting a mixture of boiled rice and water, and is about 6.5 to 7% alcohol by volume (13 to 14 proof). It was originally most popular among farmers, who called it nongju, which means "farmer liquor."

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