Dongdemun + Great Korean Beer Festival Day II Review

Craftbros doing their bro thing
I saw maoists salute the same way back home
Holidays in Korea don't come to often; if I counted the total number of national holidays in a year, it sums to a grand total of 14. Yes, 14 including national holidays that unfortunately befall on Sat and Sundays. It's a significant decrease in recreational  time for someone coming from Nepal, where if I calculated correctly, has more than 15 days work time off in the month of October and November alone. Add all the Nepal bands to that and the holidays skyrocket. 

No wonder no work gets done in Nepal. 

If you put out the argument that we, here in Korea, have a two day long weekend and counterbalances all that I have mentioned, well you are right. And wrong at the same time. Most companies and graduate school laboratories ask workers and students to show up on weekends, even sometimes asking to stay behind and work on Sundays. 

After the government finally found the need to force it's overworked populous to go take a break, they instigated a series of reforms that would "prevent" people from doing more than they could physically do. Samsung, a government by its own right, for instance, had to bring in the 40 hour per week schedule to tackle rising concerns on it's employee's health and well being. The Korean government, on the other hand, decided that declaring more national holidays was the way forward. 

That's why now we have such holidays such as the ridiculously named Korean Alphabet Day. I couldn't care less about the name as long as it's a day off. As I nonchalantly brushed aside the notion of celebrating the same alphabets that have been a source of much pain and panic over the years, I took full advantage of the whole day to explore the never ending horizons of Seoul and go get seriously drunk at the Great Korean Beer Festival. 

The Build Up:

There's so much you can accomplish in the morning, if that is, if you can wake up early. I mean 9 a.m early (give me a break, its a holiday!). The movie Martian is running on cinemas now, and a friend of mine and I booked the tickets for a 10 a.m show to kick start the holiday experience. 

If you haven't watched it yet, although even if you find some scenes outrageously misleading, it's worth paying cinema tickets to go watch it. Matt Damon brings in his wit to a character stranded on Mars and for any DIY enthusiast, he brings a measure of DIY delight to the whole plot experience. 

Our initial plans was to first head to SeoulHomeBrew to get supplies for our new brew but since the shop didn't open till 2, we headed straight up to the flea market in Dongdemun. And what a sight that was!

My dad would have loved one of these
From old VCR decks to tape projectors to phones where numbers have to be delightfully rotated by your fingers (remember those back in 1995?), the market had everything. It's a real treat for the eyes but not so much as a "purchase" per say. It's just fun to go "eye shopping", as one of the sellers explained. 

Quite a wait to eat your own food
Dongdemun also hosts one of the most popular, well advertised and celebrated Nepali Restaurant fittingly named "Everest." Most Nepalese restaurants here like to brand themselves an Indian Restaurant fearing that they wouldn't draw enough crowds but here, at this jam packed and vibrantly decorated restaurant, that's not an issue. 

MoMo: on the way
After having a feast like we had never before, and after having stuffed ourselves with enough momos to last another year, we moved on to Co-ex Mall, where we were planning to meet up with another friend of ours. 

I took the opportunity to go buy the Martian on paperback and then head straight to the:

Great Korean Beer Festival:

I will have a photo descriptive blog work as review for you..
Info on the Beer Festival [Here]

Craftbro's Brat Imperial IPA was pretty solid.
Good mouth feel, strong hop flavors. You might want to take it easy on the sips, wracks at 8.2% ABV
Craftbros Stall. Try out their Cosmos IPA before venturing into their IIPA
All beers cost a decent 4K won
Korea Craft Brewery's stall.
One of the few craft companies that bottle their beers. Ark be High is the stand out. 
I recommend skipping everything else and heading out to Hand and Malt's Stall
The ChangPyung Pale Ale is actually the first ever brew to be brewed with Korean Hops
I dig their Slow IPA but I was there for the Woodford Reserve Barrel Aged Mocha Stout.
Brandon, the guy holding beer and their head brewer, was guessing that the beer clocked in an 6.5 ABV
but i soon realized that was not the case as I got shitfaced. A real sipper of a beer
My sworn enemy was on stage but credit to him, he played well
The crowd that their band drew was pretty impressive too
Entertainers doing their job of not entertaining
Beer makes everything sound smooth
Time for one more beer

View from our seat
Overall larger crowd, bigger festival but the lack of participation from other prominent
Korean craft brewers were apparent. 
and of course, there's always time for some soju to top it off


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