Galmegi Brewing Company Summerbrewfest

Photo by Mallory Dowd
On the verge of their Fall Brewfest may I present one of the finest brewers in all of Korea, Galmegi Brewing Company. Filling the amazingly large void as Busan's first craft brew pub, Galmegi is located a few short steps from Gwangan Beach in one of my favorite areas of the city, Gwangali. More of a nanobrewery than a microbrewery, everything is made in Korea with mountain stream water, German barley, American hops, and imported yeast strains from around the world. But that's just where they get going. The amazing infusions they put together for their Summerbrewfest would make quite a few breweries Stateside take note. Here's what they had on tap:

For whatever reason I've never really considered myself a saison kind of guy, but this one hit the spot on a hot summer day. I took in Galmegi's Summer Saison while perusing the literature at Fully Booked, a fine little used bookstore/coffee shop/beer lounge located in the heart of Kyungsung. 

The beer itself was complex with a floral and fruity aroma to match its flavor. The yeast was quite prevalent and earthy with hints of bitterness cutting through it. Not a ton of body for this cloudy elixir, but that's to be expected. The overall taste was slightly dry with just a little more sweetness than I'm accustomed to with saisons. Still not my favorite style of beer, but this one was done well for those that enjoy em. 

After making my way over to the pub itself, I sat down with a pint of their Soulless Ginger. Holy shit was this good. As the name would indicate, the ginger is the star of this brew from start to finish. What you smell up front is floral, fruity, and blatant. That doesn't really go away as you drink... until the aftertaste, which was quite yeasty and hung around.

While there certainly are ginger beers being made in the States, I haven't made my way around to trying one yet, so this was the first of its kind for me. Summers here in Korea are more than a touch hot and brutally humid, and this beer was a treat to take down on a sticky night. Crisp and refreshing, I wish I could have it by the six pack here on Geoje... but that's the case with just about every beer other than Hite.

Anyway, here are the other selections they had on tap for the Summerbrewfest I was a little too... out of sorts to take notes on.

Dry EB CiderLemon Basil Wheat
Ginseng Pale Ale
Grapefruit IPA
Sunbi Stout (by Busan Brewery)

While I gave all of them a try, I managed to leave out a full review for both the Grapefruit IPA, and Sunbi Stout. The IPA had grapefruit infused both in the brew and on the spot through some contraption I remember being impressed with... but little else. The stout was one of the best things my mouth had the joy of tasting since landing on these shores. Again, no notes on those beyond that. It was a lot of beers in by the time I tried those two.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed everything Galmegi had to offer and am more than happy to head back for their Fall Brewfest this weekend. If you're here on the South side of the country I cannot recommend them highly enough. Much like Craftworks in the North, they're a very welcome oasis in the beer desert. However, Galmegi is much more experimental with what they're brewing and have strayed quite far from the ol standbys you'll get from the bigger Korean microbrew. This is absolutely no knock on Craftworks, more of a comment on how innovative the brews are at Galmegi.

Finding Galmegi

3-4 3rd Floor, Namcheon-dong, Suyoung-gu, Busan, South Korea
Located at Gwangan beach across from Saigon on the third floor. By subway, get off at Geumyeonsan Station and take exit 3. Follow the road towards the beach, and they are the second building up from Stabucks on the 3rd floor of the Sejin Building.

Mon - Fri: 6 - midnight
Sat: 2pm - 2am
Sun: 2pm - midnight
Phone: 010-4469-9658


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The Concept

Brew Day is a brewers collective with a different obsession every month. Each month the homebrewers involved will tackle a different style of beer by brewing a batch and getting their malt-stained hands on as many pints of the same style as possible. Each brewer will bring their own warped concept to their batch helping to create as many variations as there are brewers involved.