Saturday, December 22, 2007

there's something about ..... travelogue 5: wine

This shanghai trip is part business, part pleasure. Almost every dinner is with business associates in some lavish restaurants.

Our very first dinner with them, I was asked if I drink "白酒".

Of course I do and I replied accordingly.

Just when I was expecting white wine like those over here from the western countries, I was given a rude shock.

It was really WHITE. Crystal clear white like Water. They pour it into a very small glass with each serving equivalent to a little more than a sip. For every toast, you are supposed to finish... I mean.. it's only a sip. You can't simply have half a sip, that would look silly and rediculous.

How bad can that be, I thought. The worse case could be like brandy, I thought.

On the very first toast, like everyone else, I gulp it in..... without thinking.


This alcohol BURNS!!!! I don't mean brandy kind of burn, it felt like drinking fire! Naturally I choked!

The chinese people got a good laugh. Nabeh!

I was told that this contains about 60% alcohol and the actual term is called "高粮". This is supposedly the best chinese wine ever. After each drink, you can feel the liquid going through your body down to the intestines. It's that strong.

And once you finished the first Gulp alive... these Chinese Businessmen expects you continue this drink with them for subsequent Toasts.

What price you pay for free dinners.

Moral of the Story.... Don't go China.

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