Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Qingdao: The Brewery

Since I have come to China, I have come to really appreciate beer. The third-spaces for expats tend to be pubs {I've been hanging out with Brits and Irishmen too much!} and beer is usually fairly cheap and readily available. And, believe it or not, there are a fair amount of local breweries around, especially in cities with a large foreign/cosmopolitan influence.

One of the first cities to have an independent brewery was Qingdao {yes, Tsingtao}. Tsingtao hasn't been a a little independent German brewery in a long time, but I was very interested in going to see it and the city of Qingdao herself. The Olympic Sailing competition was held there in 2008, and I'd heard many good things about how nice the city is. So, I treated myself to a weekend away for my 28th birthday!

Qingdao is all about it's beer. You can buy cheap, "raw" {unfiltered} beer in little baggies from kegs that come straight from the production floor. I decided to take a tour first, and then wander around and find some lunch. I'm glad I went. There was a lot of historical information about the history of the brewery {it was owned and operated by Asahi during the Japanese occupation for example, and didn't start mass production and export until the 90's} and you got two free samples of beer from the factory.

This is a fountain in the outside courtyard of the museum. Reception, the museum itself, and parts of the old and new facilities are located in different buildings.

One of the old machines. I don't remember what it did, but it looked cool. And, that manequin guy was creepily life-like.

Another view from outside. Who doesn't like inflatable beer cans on their roof?

The wall of beer from all over the world. I looked valiantly for anything that looked "local" like Shiner, or Buffalo Bayou or St. Arnolds. Nada. Sad face.

Qingdao is also famous for it's spicy clams, so after I was done with my tour, I treated myself to a beer and a plate of them. The weather was warm and breezy, the beer was cool {ish...China is a bit spotty about cold beverages} and the clams were delicious. It was a good day. Have you been on any tours lately?

1 comment:

  1. Ahh! My husband would flip over this! We love visiting breweries but haven't been able to since the little one. I want to go this ARE going this summer. HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY!!!!