The two-day online event last week covered the ins and outs of makgeolli, cheongju, and soju.
At 1 pm South Korean time, Day 1 of the World Suul Conference kicked off last Thursday. Filled with an array of talks, the Zoom seminar allowed listeners from across the world to tune in. We at The Sool Company attended and watched each speaker give their perspectives on the nature and history of traditional Korean alcohol around the world. While the event did get off to a slow start with a few technical issues, the speakers were still able to present information that both experts and beginners would have found interesting.
On Friday, Day 2 of the Conference began. The topics covered throughout the talks focussed on the types of alcohol, how to brew, and the quality of ingredients. Many companies and individuals around the world logged in to share how they are contributing to spreading awareness of Korean traditional alcohol and creating their own unique taste.
The event was live-streamed on YouTube, recorded, and uploaded for those who were not able to attend. We decided to watch through the recordings in order to provide specific times of important presentations. See below:
Currently, the YouTube recording for Day 1 is not available. We will update this article as soon as the video is up to view.
Each notation is set out in hour: minute: second format. You can find the link to the Day 2 YouTube video here.
00:48:00 Start time and Introduction
00:50:00 Makgeolli, The art of fermentation - about the process of building, Byulbit Agriculture and Brewery Co., Hongseong-gun, Chuncheongnam-do, South Korea
The talk, led by Changbom Park, covered how to make Makgeolli, what is makgeolli, and what to look for when selecting the ingredients. The talk was very informative, and we recommend watching this session to learn more about our favourite Korean drink.
01:32:30 What does Suul mean to me? - Hana makgeolli Brand Story, Alice Jun, Co-founder, Hana Makgeolli Brewery, Brooklyn, NY
You can check out Hana Makgeolli through their Instagram.
During this segment, we heard from Hana Makgeolli about their brand story and their contributions to the Makgeolli market. Based in the USA, Hana Makgeolli gave a unique viewpoint on the importance of spreading knowledge of Makgeolli in a western country.
01:59:00 Korean Unfiltered Suul, Makgeolli, Jeff Rubidge, Connecticut, USA
You can watch some of Jeff's videos on his YouTube.
Jeff's presentation also introduced the listeners to another key figure who is spreading awareness of Makgeolli and Korean alcohol through YouTube. Jeff's channel has a variety of content about the flavour profiles of Makgeolli, how to make makgeolli, and his experiments on how to make nuruk.
02:19:30 Korean Unfiltered Suul, Makgeolli, Tei Park, California, USA
Within this talk, we were guided through Tei Park's own experiences with Korean alcohol through her eyes as a Korean-American. We saw that it has been important to recognize Korean heritages and how Korean alcohol can assist in doing so.
02:48:00 Korean Filtered Suul, Cheongju, Julia Mellor, Founder of The Sool Company, Australia
You can find Julia on her LinkedIn.
During this session, Julia presented who The Sool Company is and what we do. Following on, an introduction to the significance of Cheongju and how the sool industry can and will evolve over time.
03:17:30 Korean Filtered Suul, Cheongju, John Allen, Helsinki, Finland, Europe
Check out John's content on Instagram.
John also stressed the importance of Cheongju in his talk and gave us an insight into the market for Korean alcohol in Finland and Europe. John has also been busy making his own Makgeolli and nuruk and creating a brand with the hopes to introduce sool to Scandinavia.
03:56:00 Korean Distilled Suul, Soju, Remembrance video for the late Taek-Sang Kim, Seoul intangible heritage, Samhae Soju
This brief special video featured the story of Soju icon and cultural legend, Kim Taek-Sang. While the entire video was not played for us, there were instructions to find the full video to watch later on.
04:02:00 Korean Distilled Suul, Soju, Tokki Soju Brand Story, Brandon Hill, founder and creator of Tokki Soju, New York, USA
Explore Tokki Soju through his Instagram. Due to drinking laws in the USA, you must be 21 and over to view their page.
Finally, Tokki Soju's founder Brandon introduced their brand, what his purpose was for Soju distilling, and his contributions to the Soju industry across the globe. Formerly USA-based, Tokki Soju has made a name for itself from the distribution of top-quality Korean alcohol. They opened their flagship bar 'Tokki Bar' in Seoul this year, so check them out here if you want to try their excellent soju cocktails.
The next International Suul Conference will not be for another 3 years, but based on the content of this year's event, we can't wait to see the next presentations on how the world of Korean traditional alcohol has changed over time.