Whatever the day, whatever the occasion, whatever the meal, beer is the perfect complement. It’s easy, refreshing, and basically a meal in and of itself, thanks to its grainy body. A while ago, I heard the statistic that South Korea consumes the most alcohol per capita than any other country in the world, which instantly made me curious about their bar scene. While we all know soju is a top choice, I wanted to take a closer look at Korea’s brewery culture.
While the number is still growing, here are a few local breweries that rank as favorites in South Korea:
Magpie Brewing Company
Magpie Brewing Co is a microbrewery producing and selling small batches of pale ale, porter, kölsch, and IPA. While this brewery first started on Jeju Island, it has since expanded to include locations in Itaewon and Hongdae. A few of its signature brews include The Ghost, Green Frog, and Slash-And-Burn, which all include odes to Jeju’s local flavors and ingredients. If you like to get up close and personal with your beer, Magpie offers tours at its original location because, according to the Magpie team, “When you learn about the beer, it tastes even better.” I think they might be on to something.
Pong Dang Craft Beer Company
View this post on Instagram
🇰🇷 #SeoulBeerWalk 🇰🇷 I was seriously busy these days, I almost forgot to post my Seoul memories😅Let me show you this bar! This bar is Pong Dang Craft Beer Company located to Sinsa-Dong. They brew their own beer and also has guest tap!🍺 Beer is nice also the food is delicious 😋💓 Skewers😍 忙しすぎて投稿するの完全に忘れてたやつ← 韓国のクラフトビール巡り、お次の場所はPong Dang Craft Beer Conpany! ソウルにいくつかバーを持ってるブリュワリー。ここはどっちかというとスポーツバーっぽかった。ゲストタップも色々あるし、何より串が旨かった。笑 ・ ・ #PongDangCraftBeerCompany #PongDangCraftBeer #PongDangcbc #PongDang #크래프트맥주 #수제맥주 #Seoul #韓国 #Korea #ソウル #craftbeer #クラフトビール #draftbeer #koreancraftbeer #craftbeerinkorea #craftbeerinseoul #koreanbeer #beerporn #beerflight #drinkstagram #beergeek #beergram #ビールクズ #ビール女子 #ビール部 #毎日ビール #beerdventure #びあどべんちゃー
Pong Dang Craft Beer Company believes, and rightly so, that good beer brings people together. In 2011, this warehouse-style bottle shop opened its first location, boasting 140 types of bottled beer. But selling only other people’s beers wasn’t in the cards for this innovative team. Three years and two additional locations later, Pong Dong’s owner had created and perfected his own beer recipes that the company now offers at its Made in Pong Dang Itaewon-based location. Check out Pong Dang Craft Beer’s flagship or any of its locations for great food and even greater beer.
Based in Incheon, Caligari Brewing is known for its fun and fruity beer flavors. The Caligari team is always researching and developing new beers in order to bring the most innovative brews to market. With flavors like banana and grapefruit, and even chocolate and coffee, Caligari offers visitors the chance to try the likes of Banana White, Sleepwalking IPA, and Dr. Filed in Future—quirky names that are only half as fun as the flavors they contain.
AKITU Brewing Company
AKITU Brewing Co. has been slinging craft brews in Busan since 2003. A mainstay of Busan’s drinking culture, AKITU carries on a legacy of beer-making that dates back to the Sumerian period. Over the years, this brewery has proven it’s a keeper of the craft; thanks to its team’s wealth of experience and knowledge, strict selection process, and optimal blending practices. After a day hitting the streets of Busan, head on over to AKITU Brewing Co. to try its best pours of Dalmaji, Flora, Camellia, or Dokkaebi. You won’t be disappointed!
Are we missing your favorite local brewery in South Korea? Tell us about it in the comments below.