Baijiu 201: Setting the Table

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We have reached the point where we separate the heads and tails from the heart. For some of you, the Baijiu 101 course may have seemed easy. This is another matter altogether. This will test your mettle. We are heading deep into world of baijiu, and by the time we emerge you may be ready to lead excursions of your own.

In this course, you will learn all about the different styles of baijiu—which brands are the most important, how the minor styles are made, and where in China baijiu is produced. You will learn about some of the mythology surrounding Chinese alcohol, the philosophies that inform Chinese drinking habits, and how to not embarrass yourself while drinking baijiu in China. You will also learn all about qu, Chinese fermentation, and why various baijiu production techniques are used.

Over the following nine lessons, you will encounter plenty of new information. Don’t panic! We do not expect you to memorize everything, but in order to become a Master of Baijiu, you will need to retain the key points.

If you pay attention, you will leave Baijiu 201 knowing more about baijiu than almost all of your peers. You will be able to discuss baijiu with a high degree of sophistication and you will be prepared to tackle the (forthcoming) advanced course.

  • If you pass the final quiz of this test you will receive your Baijiu Master certification, which will unlock future online and in-person baijiu educational opportunities.
  • A score of 80% or higher is required to pass each quiz.
  • Completing all quizzes will unlock the final quiz.

For additional information on how to navigate the courses at Ming River University, please click here.

UPDATE (8/2021):

Qu’s date of arrival: In the previous course we taught you that qu was invented around 2000 BC. It was the best estimate we had at the time, but recent archaeological evidence suggests that the origins of qu go back even further than formerly thought, to China’s prehistoric Yangshao Culture (5000-3000 BCE).

What we can say for certain now, is that qu became widely popularized and the primary method of fermentation in China during the first millennium BCE, but was likely first developed long before 2000 BCE.

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