|Contents: 1) What Is Baijiu? 2) Baijiu History 3) How Is Baijiu Made? 4) Baijiu Ingredients 5) Types Of Baijiu 6) Baijiu Facts & FAQs 7) How To Drink Baijiu 8) Pairing Baijiu With Food 9) Baijiu Cocktails 10) Popular Baijiu Brands|
|Country of origin||China|
|Alcohol by volume||28-65%|
|“Baijiu” in Chinese characters||白酒|
|Literal meaning||“white (clear) alcohol”|
Best Foods To Eat With Baijiu
Before deciding on what food to have with each baijiu, it’s important to remember that each baijiu brand is very different, so much like finding which baijiu to use in a cocktail, it’s important to find the right baijiu to match the right food. Here, we cover off some flavours and foods you might enjoy with each aroma of baijiu.
Sauce aroma baijiu – Soy, sesame, fermented bean paste and umami (savoury) flavours are all common characteristics. From this classified aroma, the taste can evoke shitake mushrooms and a roast aftertaste. The distilled grain is used up to 8 times before being discarded. Best enjoyed with pickled or fine preserved foods, especially dishes from the Kweichow region. Outside of Chinese cuisine, both sauce and strong aroma Baijius work possibly better with buffalo wings and in general, meat dishes. The powerful palate balances with the fat of the meat and particularly meat that has a spice or pickle sauce (or rub).
Strong aroma baijiu – The character of strong aroma baijiu can be described as sweet or even fruity – think, pineapple, banana and anise. Some brands have been compared to an Islay malt. As with sauce aroma, it is paired well with local dishes; in this case, Sichuan dishes. Outside of Chinese cuisine, spicy dishes work well, cutting through the strong fruity and assertive aroma well.
Light aroma baijiu – The aroma is clean with light fruit and chamomile characteristics. Think chicken and seafood. Even a citrus salad. Or oysters. Lighter food dishes with flavours that marry well to the light, powerful and floral elements of light aroma baijiu.
Rice aroma baijiu – Glutinous rice is used so the palate can be described as sweeter, mellow, and aromatic, with a hint of smoke. It has been compared to sake. Ramen, tempura, mushrooms all seem to go well as food accompaniments. With rice aroma baijiu, it is easier to enjoy as an aperitif. It can work well with a light meat dish such as steak or chicken sliced over noodles too.
As with many dishes, the key thing is not to marry the wrong dish with the wrong baijiu. Avoid this by complimenting flavours as we suggest above. It might be a chance to involve more Western dishes and finding the best accompaniment for them but although the above is a fairly solid guide, each palate is different and might find a favourite dish that works best with a particular baijiu brand.
(Read More: Baijiu Taste – What Food Goes Well With Baijiu?)