Soju is one of the most popular alcohols in the entire world, and the heavy drinking culture in Korea is a testament to just how delicious, addictive, and fun the drink is.
You will likely be bombarded with multiple fridges full of soju bottles as you browse liquor stores these days. The demand for the relatively lightweight (compared to vodka) drink is high and it’s not slowing down anytime soon.
What might confuse you is just how to pick from the huge variety of brands. From the distinct ‘GoodDay’ label with its cute font to the Korea-leading Chamisul, whichever is right for you?
We’ve gone through and looked at some of the most popular and available soju brands out there and listed them below for you.
Have a read of our 7 best soju brands that you should buy!
As the number 1 soju brand across South Korea, Chamisul has to be the first pick on our list.
Chamisul is made from starches such as sweet potato and offers its drinkers a clear, crisp taste of soju. Chamisul pairs perfectly with the flavorsome Korean dishes we all know and love.
Read More: Soju Food Pairing
However, if you’re not used to drinking soju, Chamisul does have a slightly bitter aftertaste that only seasoned drinkers will appreciate. It contains between 17% and 20% of alcohol.
Chamisul is a product of Hite Jinro, which offers various lines of soju that also cater to the upper market.
2. Chum Churum
Chum Churum is considered a lighter, ‘softer’ soju brand among the top-ranked soju brands in the world, containing between 18-19% of alcohol.
The original Chum Churum is produced from a mix of rice and grains. It also uses alkaline water, making the soju flavor become more distinct
This brand has been a huge hit amongst those who are not used to drinking heavier soju alcohol such as Korean females as well as the younger market.
Chum Churum has always had fantastic marketing, using the latest Korean A-listers such as Hyori, Blackpink’s Jennie, Red Velvet’s Irene, and Suzy to advertise their product.
GoodDay’s unique selling point is the fact that they use natural mineral water from Jirisan Mountain to produce their soju. With this in mind, you’ll feel (psychologically) more refreshed knowing you’re consuming water straight from Mother Nature!
GoodDay is a popular choice because of its variety of flavors that caters to those looking for a fun drinking session. It offers flavors such as grapefruit (its most popular) and fan-favorite peach to more exciting and unique soju flavors such as pomegranate and honeydew.
With its slightly lower-than-average alcohol content of 16.9%, GoodDay is a staple with the younger crowds.
4. Charm Soju
Charm soju is a highly requested brand within South Korea albeit it is not as internationally recognized as those previously mentioned.
This soju is made from rice, wheat, barley, and potatoes. It contains 16.9% of alcohol and has a mild alcoholic aftertaste. It is not as light as Chum Churum, but not as heavy as Chamisul, and thus is considered a mid-range soju.
Charm contains hints of malt and citrus, making it a refreshing choice to pair with Korean meals and street snacks.
Similar Article: The 10 Best Korean Drinking Games
5. C1 Blue
C1 Blue is hailed as Busan’s number 1 selling soju brand. It’s super smooth with a clean and refreshing aftertaste.
It’s produced through a method called SOVIA, which stands for Sound Vibration Aging Process. This method is considered one of the best aging techniques for soju.
Similar to GoodDay, it sources natural bedrock water from Mount Samgak as one of its ingredients. It contains a mid-range 18% alcohol content.
As its name suggests, O2Linn boasts a superior amount of oxygen dissolved in its soju than any other brand. This makes it a greener drinking choice!
Although it still boasts a 19.5% alcohol content, this method of distillation results in a much cleaner and refreshing taste and less of a hangover.
Read more: How Much Soju Does It Take To Get Drunk?
O2Linn also boasts a sister product called Virginia, which has slightly less alcohol content and is quite the popular choice amongst females.
Saan soju is one of the heaviest soju brands on this list. With 21% alcohol content, it’s the typical choice for those looking for a big night out.
Saan is characterized by its strong, bitter taste that hits you like a ton of bricks. It also has a relatively stronger smell than most other brands, so we’d recommend not giving your shot a sniff before taking it.
I hope you found this list of the 7 best soju brands useful!
Most people know soju as South Korea’s favorite drink and it’s not hard to see why. With its low alcohol content, variety of fun and exciting flavors, and affordable price, soju is fast becoming a global staple at dinners and parties.
There is a wide variety of soju brands out there, but we hope our list has helped you narrow down your choices a bit more.
Whether you’re a seasoned alcohol drinker or someone who just wants to have a relaxed night of drinking, there are soju brands that will cater to exactly what you’re after.
For more useful tips about soju, don’t miss our ultimate guide on how to drink soju!