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The Godfathers: Laki Yoo & Louis Eom - Korean Takeover

Updated: Jan 6, 2021

For the second time this year, the Union Group hosted a multi-day bar takeover event. Between August 29 and September 1, 2018, 7 Korean bartenders from the top bars in Seoul conducted guests shifts at four different Jakarta bars. Over a four day period, the bartenders brought their signature cocktails from Seoul to share with the Jakarta masses. It was a unique opportunity for local patrons to sample the delicious tipples of Korea. An exhibition of techniques and talent, the bartenders, also brought with them their culture and flavors unique to Korea. The inclusion of ingredients such as Korean ginseng, omija, and jujube transported the tastebuds of the customers to a whole new world.

The drinking culture in Korea, much like in Indonesia is in the process of evolution. Traditionally a Scotch whisky and soju only drink experience is gradually changing into the modern cocktail culture. More of the younger generation of Korean bar patrons are slowly opening up to trying new and experimental drinks. This revolution in drinking started as early as the turn of the millennia. First generation bartenders such as Laki Yoo and Louis Eom set an early standard of bartending. Today, newer generations of bartenders like Hans Lee, Demie Kim, and Bomin Kim are carrying their legacies through exciting new recipes and concepts.

Laki Yoo - Keepers' Bar

A legend of the Korean bar industry, Laki Yoo has over two decades of experience behind the bar. Today he runs and owns his bar called Keepers', an ever-changing concept cocktail bar with takes influences from around the world. Located in the upscale Gangnam area, Keepers' reputation is slowly growing, having been named in Asia's Best 50 Bars list for the second year in a row.

Laki first started his career in the hospitality industry back in 1996. His decision to go into bartending first began due to a necessity for pocket money after graduation. After a turbulent few years in the industry, Laki bounced back as an educator and consultant for bars, as well as running a bartending competition. It wasn't till 2016 when he opened Keeper's, that he went back into running a bar. An exciting concept, Keepers' doesn't have a fixed theme or menu. Laki changes the cocktail menu as often as every three months to explore new ideas. The bar themes range from Italian to Scandanavian tipples, showing his range and creativity in mixology.

Now considered one of the pioneers in the industry, Laki shares his expertise and knowledge of the industry through his bar Keepers' and his consultation. Educating the bartenders and the customers about mixology, Laki wishes to continue growing the bar industry in Seoul.

"10 years ago, closer to 2010, since then the bar scene has changed. But today we need more education for the customers about drinking & spirits."

Naked Cooler

A refreshing tipple perfect for a hot summers day. The Naked Cooler soothes the strong flavor of whiskey with the cooling properties of aloe vera and watermelon.

- Blended Malt Whiskey

- Aloe Vera Wine

- Watermelon

- Homemade Osmanthus Syrup

- Fresh Lemon Juice


B1, 87-9 cheongdam-dong,Gangnam-gu (5,301.47 km)

06014 Seoul, Korea

Telephone: +82 2-549-9992

Website: No Website

Facebook: @KeepersSeoul

Instagram: @keepers_team

Dohwan "Louis" Eom - Le Chamber

A former Diageo World Class Korea winner, Dohwan "Louis" Eom is one of the biggest names in Korean bartending. Since winning the competition back in 2010, Louis is the proud owner of four different bars in Seoul. However, it is his first bar, Le Chamber, that has brought in the most accolades. Opening in 2014, Le Chamber currently sits at #17, in Asia's 50 Best Bars list for 2018.

A part of the first generation of Korean bartenders, Louis started his bartending career back at the turn of the millennia. A fresh graduate from tourism university, he found work at the prestigious Ritz Carlton in Seoul. Assigned to the hotel bar from the get-go, Louis built an illustrious career behind the bar. In 2010, Louis sealed his status as a bartending heavyweight when he won the Diageo World Class bartending competition in Korea. He then made it into the top 3 of the global round of the competition.

Today, Louis owns and manages four different bars in Seoul. His bar Le Chamber is a speakeasy bar hidden behind a bookshelf, known for its library of over 300 bottles of whisky. A classic chair service bar, Le Chamber sets the standard of cocktail bars in Seoul. In a short period since opening Le Chamber, he has opened other bars including Still, Soha, and the Side Note Club. Looking towards the future, Louis aims to open more cocktail bars. Hoping to influence and change the drinking culture in Korea with his cocktails.

"When I first started (in the Ritz Carlton), I didn't know spirits; I didn't know drinks, I disliked drinking."

Mr. Moon

Fun in nature, the Mr. Moon cocktail inspired by the current South Korean president of the same name, uses very Korean ingredients such as soju and Korean peppers.

- Hwayo 41 Soju

- Cherry Heering

- Fresh Lemon Juice

- Korean Peppers

- Charcoal Cream


강남구 청담동 83-4B1 #83-4 Chungdam-dong Gangnam-gu Seoul Korea (5,297.43 km)

135-954 Seoul, Korea

Telephone: +82 2-6337-2014

Website: No Website

Facebook: @LeChamber.seoul

Instagram: @le_chamber

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