Seoul’s Queen of Beer


It’s hard to pinpoint the genesis of South Korea’s craft beer scene. One tale says it all started with a hit television show titled My Love from the Star where the protagonists regularly indulged in chimek—that’s a portmanteau of the words “chicken” and “maekju” (beer). The show led customers to troop to Gyeongnidan, the home of hip grubs-and-alcohol hang outs.

True or not, Seoul’s suds have become definitely better compared to a decade ago, when the country was nicknamed “Land of the Bland.” One of the microbrewery owners credited for improving it is Hee Yoon-Kim, creative director of the Booth. In a video series commissioned by Korean Air, she talks about the growth of the scene and why a mug of beer does wonders for the mind and soul.

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