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  • We're at the Qingdao Beer Festival,

  • Asia's largest beer festival,

  • where over 1,400 types of beer are served

  • and over six million people visit every year.

  • Tsingtao is this city's namesake beer.

  • In 2017, it was the third-most consumed beer in the world,

  • after American behemoth Budweiser

  • and Snow, a Chinese beer only sold in China.

  • But while Snow may dominate by sheer numbers,

  • Tsingtao is more internationally known.

  • It is one of the oldest beer brands in China,

  • started by Germans in the early 20th century.

  • Today, it's available in over 70 countries,

  • and is the host of this really, really intense beer festival.

  • But this city's beer-making history goes back even further

  • to 1903,

  • when the Tsingtao Brewery opened under the name

  • Germania-Brauerei.

  • At that time, Qingdao was a German colony,

  • and the Germans built a centralized pipe system

  • for drinking water,

  • a rarity in China at the time.

  • Water was piped in from the mountains,

  • which, along with hops and barley,

  • were the only ingredients in the beer.

  • In 1916, the brewery was sold to the Japanese.

  • And rice was added to the recipe.

  • And in 1949, when the Chinese Communists came to power,

  • the brewery became a state-owned enterprise.

  • It wasn't until the early 1990s when the brewery was privatized

  • and became the brand we all know today.

  • In 1991, the first Qingdao Beer Festival was held.

  • It now takes place every summer and lasts for about a month.

  • In 2015, this site was constructed as a year-round ode to beer.

  • And today, it remains the main venue for the annual festival.

  • It's not the most environmentally-friendly option,

  • but plastic bags as a takeout carrier

  • are very common in China,

  • in part because they're cheap and convenient.

  • Tsingtao Beer also tastes better in Qingdao.

  • Beer, after all, is basically liquid bread,

  • and the fresher it is, the better it tastes.

  • But the festival isn't just beer and food.

  • There are dance performances,

  • fireworks,

  • a drone show,

  • carnival rides,

  • this eccentric pile of bubbles,

  • and quite a bit of children.

  • Despite the festival's popularity,

  • locals say it is the beer, not the festival, that makes the city.

  • In fact, Professor Shen says

  • the first commercial ever made in China

  • was for Tsingtao Beer, in 1947.

We're at the Qingdao Beer Festival,

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At the Qingdao Beer Festival, Where Beer Comes In Plastic Bags

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/10/23
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