Eats and Drinks rice.
In Korean food culture, “rice” is symbolic. It’s because it’s both a meal and a life in Korea, rice is the staple food, snacks, desserts, and alcoholic beverages.
we make rice with rice, make rice cakes or snacks for snacks, pour water into the rice left over in the rice cooker and drink it for dessert.
It is meaningful that Korean alcohol is made from “rice.”
Here, rice does not just mean rice made from rice, but it means “staple food”
Rice is the most frequently consumed staple food in Korea. There are a lot of alcohol made from rice, but in Gangwon Province, where potatoes or corn are enjoyed, they make alcohol from potatoes or corn.
Also, when making alcohol, after make rice, porridge, or rice cakes with rice and ferment them to make alcohol.
Korea has developed a custom of “gayangju(home-brewed liquor)” in which people make alcohol from door to door since ancient times.
The well-known drinks by region include Andong Soju in Andong, North Gyeongsang Province, Sogokju in Seocheon, South Chungcheong Province, and Songhwa Baek Il-ju in Iksan, North Jeolla Province.
While the number of ordinary soju sold in the market is less than 20 degrees Celsius, Andong Soju has an alcohol content of 45 degrees.
This is because the liquor made from rice is distilled.
Sogokju from Seocheon-gun, Chungcheongnam-do is sweet, like dark taste Eiswein, and an alcohol content is low as 14 degrees.
Sogokju called “sitting liquor.” Some say that it was because the scholars who were going to see the test gave up on the test and drank, and that their daughter-in-law was unable to get up for sipping a alcohol while fermenting alcohol for 100days
Songhwa Baekilju is a liquor made with pine needles, cornus fruit, omija, gujija and honey, and has a delicate aroma.
Soju, beer and makgeolli are common on the market and the favorite drinks of Korean people.
In modern Korea’s unique drinking culture, there is a “company diner” culture of drinking while shifting seats. Usually, company dinner that start after 6 p.m. often last until 12 p.m., shifting to the first and second rounds. Because of this dining culture, Korea developed a unique industry called ‘chauffeur service’. The chauffeur service is a service when people leaves their car behind and can’t get home by taxi someone drive a car ant take home.
It is ‘somaek’ that represents this dining culture. The somaek is a mixture of soju and beer, and is usually made by pouring a glass of soju into a glass of beer and filling the rest with beer. There are cocktails in foreign countries, but unlike cocktails that mix various ingredients other than alcohol, Koreans mix alcohol with other alcohols.
How to Drink in Korea
In the past, there was a drink etiquette, which made drinking difficult.
These days, such complex drink etiquette have disappeared, but there are some rules that should be followed
Fill a cup with alcohol each other and does not fill a cup with one’s own.
Therefore, make sure that the other person’s glass is empty. And you don’t fill up a glass before it is empty.
You have to pour the drink after people finished drinking. Lastly, when drinking with elderly, it is polite to turn around your body and empty the glass, and pour or receive glass with both hands.