(Originally carried on NPR International)
North Korea Mysteriously Shuts Down Its Beer Festival
If an event is branded as annual but it happens only once, can it still be called annual? This is the case for Pyongyang’s “annual” Taedonggang Beer Festival, the second of which was slated to take place during August.
China-based tour company Koryo Tours, which is among the go-to tour groups organizing trips into North Korea, writes on its blog that it was “informed” North Korean organizers have canceled the event.
“The reason for the cancellation is unclear and we don’t expect full information to be forthcoming but it is possibly down to the ongoing drought in the country that has caused a great deal of trouble,” Koryo writes.
According to Koryo, last year’s event was a good opportunity to try some local brews and mingle with locals. A menu from the 2016 fest shows several types of draft beers, fried chicken and mutton on a stick available for purchase. North Korean alcohol is a curiosity for many connoisseurs around the globe, especially given its announcement last year that its scientists have invented “hangover-free booze.”