I’m just back from a visit to Korea, and thanks to Rob from homebrewkorea, I’m now a five keg family!

Keg washing in the hotel bathtub!

Keg washing in the hotel bathtub!

A new keg in Japan costs 16,500yen from Advance Brewing. In theory a second hand keg from Homebrewing Service costs 11,500yen, but they never have them in stock.

Joongang Keg in Seoul sells second hand Cornelius (“corny”) kegs for a magical 30,000 won. At today’s exchange rates that’s equivalent to 2,500yen each. Add new rings from Advance Brewing and that’s 3,400 yen a keg total.

Of course that price includes the fun of having to open up your suitcase when checking in because the Korean authorities think you’re carrying gas tanks or nuclear weapons, and also includes the joy of trying to explain what’s in the boxes when you’re going through Japanese customs without actually admitting that you’re making beer – but c’mon, a bargain is a bargain, right? No Scotsman could resist.

These are the details for Joongang Keg as passed on by Rob. I can’t vouch for the map and directions because I went by satnav, but if you have a Korean friend, the phone number should be all you need.

중앙케그 (Joongang Keg), 02-2238-8339/011-216-9536 at 중앙시장 (Joongang Market). 

Shindang Station, exit #11….coming out the the exit turn right and walk to the next intersection (there’ll be a high school at the intersection). You want to turn right at this intersection (heading into the market area) and then take the first alley on your left past the high school. Then you walk straight until you get to an alley going right that has tons of fridges and shit on it. Go to the next ‘alley intersection’ and make another right. The keg shop is like 3 down on your left.

Map

Map

The shop front looks like this, and the man in charge – no mention of the shop name, which foxed me at first:

Joongang Keg

Joongang Keg

The guy in charge was great – when I wanted to test the pressure he brought out a screwdriver and showed me the kegs still had gas in them; when I said that one keg was hugely dented, he happily went and got another; and he had no problem with me requesting the smaller 22cm diameter kegs rather than the 23cm diameter kegs (both are the same height and around 5gallons but smaller diameter is always better for getting into fridges). He did make the comment that foreigners keep coming to him and asking for “kegs” and he doesn’t know what they are taking about – so if you go there, do him a favour and ask for “ke-gu”! 

He let slip that new kegs in Korea cost 66,000won, which I would happily pay – but apparently you need an order in the 100’s to get that. Stupidly I didn’t ask for the supplier details – however later on my trip to Seoul I got a lead on another supplier who not only sells 5G kegs, but has 3G kegs also. More on that when I get the details. (The observant amongst you will notice a 3G keg in the picture above – unfortunately it’s a pin-lock rather than a ball lock.)

Five kegs should keep me going for a while – I still can’t believe I have all this equipment but only started homebrewing less than two months about. However if the lead on the 3G supplier comes good, it will be very tempting to go back for more.

Advertisements