Korean Brewmaster Carves out a Niche in Craft Beers

      September 04, 2019 08:42

      Kim Jung-ha explored a career path as a brewmaster, a field that might still be unknown to many.

      Brewmasters do not just make and taste beer, but also work on the whole process of brewing, which includes selecting ingredients and experimenting with them and fermenting.

      Kim's journey in the world of beer began in 2003, when her father showed her a home-brewing machine at a pub in Pyeongchon, Gyeonggi Province. Her father suggested she try her hand at brewing. "Until then, I thought beer was just bland, but while learning brewing, I got to know the unique flavors and scents of craft beers," she recalled.

      Kim Jung-ha

      Kim, who opened her own pub in 2004, completed a brewery course in Seoul in 2015 offered by Doemens Akademie, one of Germany's major brewing schools. After a shaky start, she quickly found success in this job of making and tasting beer, as she swept medals at international brewing competitions.

      Kim recently published a book that shares the knowhow she obtained from her 15 years of experience in beer-making. "I hope the book would be helpful for future brewmasters and let them learn from my early mistakes," she said.

      Kim will take part in next year's World Beer Cup, the largest beer competition in the world, in the U.S. as a jury member. "When it comes to beer-tasting, the main thing a beer connoisseur looks for is a balance of flavors and scents, and the harmony of bitterness and sweetness in the aftertaste," she said.

      "Brewing is a complicated process, so it takes two to three years for me to come up with new flavors and tastes," she said. "I'm currently working on one with a salty flavor using black rice."

      "My dream is to introduce unique Korean-style specialty beer that can be recognized globally," she said.

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