Late one night, after piling together 3 different leftovers, dosing them in soy sauce and sesame oil and calling it a meal, I was adding a heap of kimchi when I noticed how much juice was left in the jar.  Me, being a terrible person, said, “hey is anyone gonna drink that” and didn’t wait for anyone to say no.

Now, most of my searches for “kimchi drink” inspirations lead me down the road of Korean-inspired Bloody Marys.  I can’t remember if I’ve said so here or not, but I’ve never had a Bloody Mary, and something tells me a homemade virgin Bloody Mary with kimchi juice isn’t the best way to start.  Eventually, I did find a line of Korean energy drinks that were all kimchi based, with 3 different flavors.  Considering I’ve already done an apple mocktail, and pear just… seems too close to apple, the most rational choice to base this week’s mocktail off of was strawberry.  

At this point, I have to admit I started to experience a bit of mission creep. A trip to Trader Joes had me browsing all sorts of fancy juices that I could have used for this, before realizing that my goal here isn’t to make the fanciest bullshit drink, but to make a bullshit drink that you, the loyal readers, could make at home.  A kimchi beverage for the proletariat.  So, I ultimately went with strawberry lemonade, something that feels much more accessible than some random $10 juice.

I legitimately thought I was making something terrible here.  But…. it’s not that bad? It mostly tastes like a spicy lemonade, with just a hint of a kombucha-y funk.  It was a little heavy, though, so I ended up adding some seltzer to lighten up a little.  And, if you have some extra ginger lying around, it doesn’t hurt to throw that in, too.

(Fun fact: I almost called this “The K-Pop Stan” before remembering I’m supposed to be taking this semi-seriously.)

The Recipe

4 oz strawberry lemonade

1 oz kimchi juice

1 tsp ginger paste/ 1 Tbs freshly grated ginger

~1 oz lime seltzer

Add strawberry lemonade, kimchi juice and ginger in a cocktail shaker, shake to combine.  Pour into a mesh strainer over a glass with ice, top off with seltzer.  Garnish with a cocktail pick skewered with kimchi, a lime wedge and a strawberry… or a raspberry, if you don’t even like strawberries that much and don’t want to buy a whole carton of them just for one garnish. I cannot stress enough that I do NOT waste food on this blog.

2 thoughts on “Mocktail Monday #3: The Busan Blossom

  1. RJG says:

    At first I resented the implication of my proletariat membership, but then remembered I am not part of the Illuminati. The real bourgeoisie

    Separate thought – The closest I’ve ever come to vomiting post-alcohol consumption was drinking a Bloody Mary, eating a 16 oz steak and the various things that accompany them, then trying to read during a 45 minute Uber ride. You aren’t missing anything

    1. Riley Johnson says:

      There’s…. a lot to unpack here, but I’m gonna start off with “if you have a boss, you are working class.”

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