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Shaoxing Wine Goes International

2016-03-25ByRuYongzheng

文化交流 2016年1期
关键词:黄酒绍兴法国

By Ru Yongzheng



Shaoxing Wine Goes International

By Ru Yongzheng

November 8, 2015 saw the beginning of the brewing season of yellow wine in Shaoxing. A ceremony was held at the public square in front of China Yellow Wine Museum in Shaoxing to mark the new brewing season and celebrate the 21st Shaoxing Yellow Wine Festival. Fifteen major breweries in Shaoxing gathered to usher in the new season.

A team from China International Radio came to cover the festival. An English program would be broadcast to introduce the wine to the world. Huang Yazhou, an author, scriptwriter and poet, presented Ode to Shaoxing Wine at the opening ceremony. Zhu Bingren, a national bronze sculpture master based in Hangzhou, gifted a huge bronze artwork to the festival.

Shaoxing, an ancient city in eastern Zhejiang, is famed for Yueju Opera, yellow wine, rivers and bridges, Lu Xun, and many other historical and cultural events and figures. The wine is a big export to foreign countries and a popular wine in Zhejiang and in other parts of China. Many people in China noticed Shaoxing Wine on the menu released on September 24 by the White House for the state banquet in honor of visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife to be held the next evening. The Shaoxing Wine on the menu was Shaoxing Yellow Wine. The yellow wine chosen by the White House was the 20-year vintage Diaoyutai wine brewed by Guyuelongshan Brewery in Shaoxing.

Shaoxing wine is popular in China for various reasons. It has a low alcohol content (lower than 16%), and it has a mellow, rich taste, and it is used as both a beverage and a cooking wine.

It has long gone international. The wine export in Shaoxing goes back to ancient times. Nowadays, the city exports yellow wine worth $20 million a year to Europe, America, Australia, Japan and Southeast Asia. Japan is the largest destination of the wine export. Japanese love the wine for its health benefits.

The yellow wine industry is an economic pillar of Shaoxing. The city's 76 yellow wine breweries employ a total of 11,000 people and produce 600,000 tons a year.

Guyuelongshan is the only Shaoxing Wine brand authorized for state banquets. Diaoyutai State Guest House picked the brand wine to entertain foreign guests as soon as it came into being in 1959. The list of visiting state leaders who tried the wine in China is very long. Fu Jianwei, the president of Guyuelongshan Group, explains: the Shaoxing wine in jar engraved with flowers perfectly integrates history, culture and traditional craft. It has served as a state gift for decades. American Presidents such as Nixon and Clinton received the Guyuelongshan Huadiao Wine. Deng Xiaoping gifted Shaoxing Wine to American visitors when China and USA founded diplomatic relations.

绍兴黄酒在法国。Shaoxing yellow wine in France

In February 2012, Xi Jinping, then vice Chinese president, revisited Muscatine, Iowa during his trip to the USA. He had visited the city for two weeks in 1985 with a Chinese delegation looking into farming technology. This time, Xi and the fourteen people he had met in 1985 attended a private dinner at the home of Sara Lande. Guyuelongshan wine was served in honor of the friendship of 27 years.

Shaoxing wine enjoys popularity with overseas Chinese community and its reputation spreads as more and more Chinese restaurants have appeared in cities around the world.

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