China’s Booming Domestic Wine Industry

Longreads

Although eighty-three percent of the wine China drinks is produced domestically, and baijiu grain alcohol is still its favorite alcohol, that’s changing. China is now the world’s fifth largest wine producer. In The California Sunday Magazine, Amy Qin writes about the changing taste of Chinese drinkers, and profiles Ma Qingyun, one producer who is helping change the face of the country’s fine wine industry:

“How about we chug the first glass?” Frank Fu, a Shanghai-based venture capitalist, suggests, holding up his full wineglass and looking around. Laughs ripple among Ma [Qingyun]’s guests, unsure if the suggestion is serious. Ma nods and laughs. “Sure!” Fu clinks glasses with his neighbors before tilting his head back and downing the wine.

When Ma started Jade Valley, he was drawn to the idea of saving the village from the fate of so many rural Chinese areas. As China’s cities have expanded and new…

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