The QiRanger Adventures

Korean Wine (복분자주)

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It may seem strange, but beer and whiskey may not be for everyone. In fact, there are several people I know that prefer a glass of wine as their favorite adult beverage. Like many countries around the world, Korea has a distinct local variety, that I think is quite special.

It’s called Bok Bun Ja Joo (복분자주) and due to the way that Hangul is translated into English, you may find several other spellings in Korea and the Internet. There are several manufacturers here in Korea that make the black raspberry wine, with Jinro leading the way. There are also a few other types of related wine that are made from plums as well. It is produced in several areas and made by fermenting the berries with water.

It is a very deep red, and in my opinion, best served cold. I find it pretty sweet, but most will tell you that it is a moderately sweet wine. Normal, off-the-shelf varieties will run you about W4,000 at a market, while at a restaurant you can see the price inflated to something closer to W12,000. The alcohol content varies as well, but the mass produced versions usually hover around 15% ABV. It is often drunk on special occasions and is rumored to promote male sexual stamina.

I personally love mixing it with soju (소조).


Written by Steve Miller

August 21, 2009 at 8:00 am

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