Hit the books? Nope, hit the booze! Peking University’s China wine event

“Chinese Terroir, Chinese Taste, Chinese Culture” was the theme of a two-day Grape and Wine Industry Cultural Fair held this weekend at one of the nation’s most revered schools, Peking University in Beijing.

The event referenced both the long history of wine / alcohol in China, dating 9000 years back to Jiahu in Henan Province, and around the world, with references to the Egyptians, Romans, churches of Europe and more.

And winery reps nationwide headed to Beijing to pour wines for students and other attendees at today’s outdoor tasting, including from Yantai (Shandong), Shangri-La (Yunnan) and Qingtongxia (Ningxia), while also being part of a contest featuring some 100 students as judges.

Of all the booths, I am most curious about Lingering Clouds: I wonder how people reacted to the natural wines and pet-nats made by Liu Jianjun aka Johnny Liu.

(We had his 2021 tea-infused Chardonnay pet-nat on Wednesday night and it was drinking fine!)

The fair’s first day included an industry forum with themes of Chinese wine and rural revitalization. Per a post by the school’s College of Modern Agriculture, those speeches included topics like the role of the wine industry in food security, ways the university can serve national rural revitalization strategies, the significance of wine science and education, and the unique characteristics of Chinese terroir. There were also more focused topics, such as Yantai terroir and the “model” of Changyu.

Reports state that over 300 people attended, including officials, heads of local industry departments, reps from some 100 wineries, and teachers and students from 32 universities and colleges.

(The big question for me is how many of them will actually buy any of that wine! But, I digress.)

The second day included the conference, the tasting fair and the contest awards.

Based on the posts crossing my Weixin feed, the participating wineries seemed pretty excited to present their wines at Peking University. I guess the association with a quality school is a bit like winning awards from well-known contests or getting a good review from a famous critics — or even presenting wines at the United Nations, as Ningxia did a few years ago.

Anyway, I’m contacting a few people about their experiences at the fair and will update this post later in the week.

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