5 Most Popular Alcoholic Drinks in China
Alcoholic Drinks in China - A Journey from Chinese Civilization to Top 10 Alcoholic Consumption Country in the world.
In China, alcohol is called as a water of history as the story of alcoholic drinks can be traced back to almost every period in Chinese history. Hence, here is the list of top 5 traditional and ancient alcoholic drinks in China you will wish to try once in your life.
Baijiu began to resemble its original form around 1368. It is one of the most consumed alcoholic drinks in China made up from grain. Baijiu precisely means “white alcohol” or spirits.
Baijiu is made from fermented sorghum (it is a genus of flowering plants in grass family Poaceae), and in a form of clear liquid. There are other Chinese varieties which may use wheat, barely, millet or even adlay millet in their grain bill. It is always produced in batches and blended. It alcohol contains ranges from 28-65%. It tastes so strong, that almost overwhelming tastes may burn a palate.
According to the Chinese tradition, Baijiu is served neat at the room temperature. It is a tradition to drink baijiu in small cup or glasses with food rather than on its own. The expense of a bottled baijiu is the roughly same price as a can of beer. The Baijiu which is aged for many years may cost high as per the quality.
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Some popular brands serving Baijiu includes Kweichow Moutai, Red Star Erguotou, Luzhou Laojiao, and Wuliangye.
Huangjiu is one of the oldest alcoholic drinks in the world. It is often known as a yellow wine and is a type of Chinese alcoholic drink.
Huangjiu is made from water, cereal grains such as rice, millet, wheat, sorghum, and a jiuqu; with the unique combination of ingredients, it contains a dozen of amino acids which is required for a human body. Huangjiu is pasteurized and aged for many years and filtered before their final bottling is done for sale to consumers. Some of the yellow wines are aged for more than 20 years and sold as premium products.
The taste of the Huangjiu is mellow and sweet and it is either drunk directly or after being cooled or warmed, it may be also used in Chinese cooking. It contains less than 20% of alcohol and may vary in color from clear to off-white, yellowish-brown, or reddish-brown. The state producing major Huangjiu includes mainland China and Taiwan.
Kaoliang Wine is a strong distilled liquor originated from Dazhigu, located in the east of Taiwan. It is also known as Gaoliang wine or sorghum wine origin made from fermented sorghum.
Kaoliang wine is now made and sold in mainland China and Taiwan and also popular in Korea, where it is known as goryangju or bbaegal. It is a type of an unflavored Baijiu and tastes like a hot pepper, rice powder, and vanilla pudding. Kaoliang wine contains alcohol which ranges from 38-63% by volume.
The famous brand for Kaoliang wine includes Kinmen kaoliang Liquor, Yusan Kaoliang Chiew, and Tunnel 88 Kaoliang Liquor.
Choujiu is a primitive varietal of Chinese alcoholic drinks and in ancient times, it was known as laoli or yujiang. It is a type of Chinese fermented alcoholic drink made from glutinous rice.
It is very thick and has a milky white color, which is usually compared with jade (it is an ornamental mineral, mostly known for its green varieties). Choujiu is fermented with the combination of the fungus Aspergillus oryzae (known as Koji in English and used as fungus to ferment soybeans to make soy sauce), which converts the rice starches into fermentable sugars, and yeast, that helps to convert sugar into alcohol.
Choujiu alcohol contain ranges from 18-25% by volume and it is served in a metal or wooden bowl from which individual cups. Now in today’s time, the city of Xi’an (it is a capital of Shaanxi region, China) is known specifically for its Choujiu.
Snake Wine was first recorded to be used in China during the Western Zhou dynasty in 771 BC. It is an alcoholic beverage produced by brewing the whole snake in rice wine or grain alcohol.
In ancient time it was believed that distilling snake’s essence into wine cures everything from rheumatism to hair loss. The snake’s venom dissolves in the liquor and poses no threat to the drinker. Snake wine is drunk in shot glasses due to its high alcohol percentage. The alcohol contained in snake wine is generally about 30-40%
The Huaxi Street of Taipei, Taiwan, is famous for its snake wines and food products during the night market.
About IBWSS China
In November 2019, Beverage Trade Network will host the first-ever International Bulk Wine & Spirits Show (IBWSS) in Shanghai, China. The two-day event (November 5-6, 2019) will include an exhibition trade show floor for buyers and sellers to meet in a central marketplace, as well as a series of speaker presentations, panel discussions, and Q&A sessions designed to offer practical, actionable advice about the Chinese bulk wine and spirits industry.
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