Wine Train

This Saturday Jon, Ashley and I went on the Seoul to Young-Dong wine train, and quite an even it was too. As I was without an internet for the duration, I was unable to update twitter or my blog. Below are the notes I took at intervals throughout the day. We also each had our DSLRs to hand and the albums can be found as follows: mine, Jon’sAshley’s. Oh, also we have all now written blogs about it, Jon here and Ashley here.


Have boarded the train to wine-town.

Our food eventually arrived maybe two minutes before the first of the wine. We tore through the plate like a pack of dogs.

First red: a bit on the sweet side, could drink a few glasses, not sure about a few bottles. Smells exactly like Korean grapes.
Goes with: Red meat with a tart sauce, evening gossiping with friends.

Second red: A sharp number, elements of natural cleaning product. Shallow and palid.
Goes with: Some form of preserved meat, biltong perhaps. Night in alone.

Third red: the first one has nothing on the sugar in this bitch. Children’s wine perhaps?
Goes with: popping stardust sweets, a Robin Williams film. Onanism.

Fourth red: Raspberry wine, the other two love it. I think it tastes like it has bubbles in but doesn’t.
Goes with: peach wine or watermelon wine, why not. Have a fruit salad while you’re at it. KEEP FRUIT OUT OF WINE (except grapes).

stupid Korean wine

I don't like any of the wine very much

10:20 Shit, we are allowed a full glass of wine from the selection we have just tried, I’ve gone with the first red.

10:21 Now they are playing Total Eclipse Of The Heart. Jon’s going nuts.

10:22 Down the hatch.

10:36 Issued with bottled water, food and wine is finished. The man lecturing us (in Korean) not half an hour ago has taken stage with a guitar. Gave us an introduction as the token Western folk, got to give a shout out to 영국 (young-guuk – Britain).

After the food, Ashley got down to some awesome 80's music

He’s really belting it out now, “la-la im-ni-da!” lots of clapping and dancing around.
A small face appeared over my shoulder.

so Jon took a photo of it

A little while ago we were introduced/talked about again by the singer/lecturer. Something about making friends with the kids on the table next to us. We have just been given 5 little oranges by their family!

Korean-language Rock n’ Roll!

everyone knew the words... except us.

Trains/busses/cars always make me sleepy. Quick nap on my hand and we have stopped. We are in Young-Dong. What activity we have next fills me with wonder.

A short bus ride away and we are at Château Mani. A fancy establishment OH THERE’S A BUFFET!

Okay so right after the food-gathering just then I wandered up to the two wine casks and got us 500ml. Sadly I misread 스외트 as White (somehow…). Ashley and Jon were not happy. Once I’d palmed a lot of it off on our Korean dinner compaitroits I went up to get some 드리이 (dry). Now things aren’t so bad. The hell are we sharing it though.
Oh, I also found some of the delicious rice cakes I’ve been looking for.
There is a table to our left playing drinking games with their wine and dinner. That is probably uncouth.

getting some dry wine eventually

Outside and we have taken some sweet jumpy pictures along with posing and that. The sun is enjoyable. Heading back inside it seems.

Ashley and I jumping like fun people

Oh there are a load of foot soaking pools full of, what appears to be, wine. Jon wants to know if you can get drunk off of it.

Communal foot pools and individual foot soaks. Both exceedingly hot.

We have entered a hall that smells delicious and it full of chairs covered in fancy cusions. Ashley is annoyed with our blogging activity “I fucking hate you both…”.

fancy chairs for a lecture/sales pitch we do not understand

A woman is talking about wine cosmetics. She has also mentioned kimchi and Korea several times. There is a middle-aged Korean man behind us really hocking his guts up. That’s gross.

Girls near us on the train motioned to us and said 첫선 유기산. Then wrote 유기삭 on my phone dictionary. Not sure what they mean right now. Will check later.

Odd experience just then as without really knowing what we were doing, Ashley and I crumbled powder in a big bowl as a Korean man sprayed wine in (and usually at us). Using some metal moulds, we have made some bath bombs. How exciting.

Got our feet in some buckets of wine. It’s really bloody hot but smells delicious. It’s like walking on a Christmas fair. Oh my feet have gone really red.

Sat in a big tub now, really very hot and the wine is more concentrated. Jon just took a photo.

and here is that picture

Feet all dried, we have been led to a wine cellar. Everyone with a camera is going nuts and there appears to be a dedicated photographer joining the group for this momentous occassion.

After a quick nose in the workshop housing several large vats of what I can only assume is wine, we have been led into some sort of small storage room. Smells like grape fanta and has the feeling of a housing estate.

In a small gallery displaying wine like artwork, this is bullshit, I am bored. Jon noticed a Champagne bottle with a misappropriated brand name ajoining the Château Mani logos.

Final stop on the tour – the gift shop. Nothing of value there. Found a big pot of something I assumed was honey (I don’t know why) actually was molasses or whatever sticky sweet goo you get from the wine making process. Vile. Bit of a headache, getting back on the bus.

Ashley seems to have been given a bottle of wine as a gift from a man. She is probably now “in his pocket”.

Lost some time there on the bus, very peaceful and napped. So did the tour guide, standing.
We are at the Ginseng Village. Ginseng smells vile it seems.

Understanding none of the Korean instructions, we have folded some paper and filled it with some sort of mixture (probably ginseng).

and here it is

Ajuma: “miss-uh in-sam. Ooh, yeppudah”
(미스 인삼. 오~, 예쁘다)
(miss ginseng. Ooh, pretty)

and here she is

Went down the road to a whole street of shops specialising purely in ginseng and associated produce.
Eating deepfried ginseng and drinking ginseng Makkeolli. Surprisingly tasty.

Got cajooled into buying some dried fruit from an old lady in the road. We have extracted the maximum amount of fun from this place. Raised a smile from the tourguide as I said in Korean “ginseng is not fun” (인삼 재미 없어요).

lovely "real people" photo

Woah, an hour on the bus there. We’re back at the bus stop. Jon bought some cans of Cass to “get the party started”.

Some Korean girls came and talked to us about our tour in pretty good English. Pushed a copy of Watchtower into Ashley’s hands. I told her to “throw that crap away” but she was all “I want to read something in English”.

Well on our way back to Seoul, we have been presented with wine glasses and a plate of delicious food: two kimbap, two sandwiches, two little oranges, four eggs and a banana. I can’t get the smell of ginseng off my hands.

Jon and I are on our second glass of the least terrible red. Ashley made a wine-fail and ordered the sweet on her first turn, meaning she hadn’t drank that crap while the guy made a second pass. She is so annoyed.

Bit annoyed with the absence of wine-monkey, so following the example of wine-ajuma, I got a bottle of red and did the refils for a few of our carrage compaitroits. Got a “bravo” from some nearby kids.

Those self-same kids threw a napkin over my chair in jest. After a little telling-off from their mum one kid came and gave me a bag of 새우깡 – what appears to be prawn flavoured corn snacks.

Wine train finished. Fun in places but not enough wine, not enough train, too much ginseng. Oh and the red wine was terrible and there was no white.


About Dave
I used to teach English in Korea. I used to write in this blog reasonably regularly for a fair while, take a read why not?

5 Responses to Wine Train

  1. Ashley says:

    Nice-uhhh. Although I’m pretty sure I never called you “gay” persay. I don’t roll that way. But I was totally annoyed at you lame-o boys and you’re lame-o fancy phones. WINE TRAINNNNN WOOOOOOO

  2. Ashley says:

    DAMMIT. “your” phones, not “you’re”. now i’m a fool.

  3. sami says:

    haha, i like the third photo very much :) she is curious!:-“

  4. rob says:

    I like wine.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: