Brewed by Tsingtao Brewery Company Limited 青岛啤酒股份有限公司
Style: Premium Lager
We all love to have a Chinese after a few beers, nothing better. But how many of you have actually dared to try out the beers that you might have noted behind the counter? Or did you even notice in your hazy intoxicated state that there is indeed some fine Chinese beer available and all you had to do was ask!
It’s funny we all know about the wonder of MSG laden Chinese dishes, but I have never really seen anyone drink Chinese beer. I myself only know about some of the Chinese beer brands because I lived and worked in China for a few years back in the day, and got a taste for the local brews.
But yes China does have some decent beers, and the most widely known of them (at least to the beer connoisseur and the backpacker) is Tsingtao beer from the lovely seaside city of Qingdao (same pronunciation, the beer has the English spelling, the city the Chinese version!), situated in Shandong province.
The brewery in Qingdao dates way back to 1903, founded jointly by some German and British settlers, and even today uses the same unique processes and yeast strains as was used over 100 years ago.
Tsingtao Beer is a well-hopped typical pilsner of 4.7%. Brewed using a combination of the best yeast and barley from around the world, and, of course, rice which you would expect as it’s China after all! To round everything off fresh spring water from the famous Laoshan Mountains is added. The Laoshan Mountains are said to be the birthplace of Taoism.
The brewery also produces a number of other beers, mostly for the local market, but it’s Tsingtao Beer that accounts for most of the brewery’s production.
First exported in 1954, the Tsingtao brand is now sold in over 60 countries and regions around the world and accounts for more than 50% of China’s beer exports.
Of course Tsingtao is ideal when having a meal, so why not give it a try next time you are sitting down to some noodles, Spring Rolls, dumplings, or even that traditional Chinese favourite, curry chips!
Review: Bottle of Tsingtao Beer: 4.7%ABV
Tsingtao, the German style Chinese lager, with great flavors, a smooth taste and which is always recommended when eating Asian food.
It comes in a lovely looking green bottle with a distinctive logo. I guess its the Chinese writing that attracts, also there looks to be a picture of the brewery overlooking a river, which I’m guessing is meant to signify the water from the Laoshan Mountain
A decent looking beer which has a clear yellow appearance, with a good nice frothy head, that unfortunately doesn’t stick around too long.
Loved the smell. Was pretty strong. Pure acidity, malts, skunk, and of course the rice, all combining to give a very sharp alcohol aroma.
The initial taste was quite strong, a little sour, and thereafter some malts and hay, a bit grainy with the rice making an appearance. A nicely balanced beer, not overbearing, with a lot of subtle flavours. Not much in the aftertaste, but overall this beer was very smooth, and not at all heavy. The crisp and refreshing taste makes this one of the most sessionable lagers you can find in my opinion. I like Tsingtao Beer, its not going to get you wasted, but you can drink a lot of them without having to worry too much about the night, or indeed not expect a bad hangover.
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