Great leap forward? Credit: Diageo and Jiangsu Yanghe Distillery Co.
Great leap forward?
Credit: Diageo and Jiangsu Yanghe Distillery Co.

Meal ticket: A Chinese whiskey with Scottish characteristics

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Distillers from the U.S. and Japan teamed up for a cross-border whiskey, so why not China and Scotland? Diageo and Jiangsu Yanghe Distillery Co., China’s No 3. maker of the clear spirit baiju, recently announced the launch of Zhong Shi Ji. Master Scotch blender Craig Wallace and baiju guru Zhou Xinhu created the new whiskey, billed as “a premium taste of East and West.” Details are sketchy, but Chinese ceramic pots come into play.

Baiju is the clear winner with Chinese drinkers Credit: China Culture Corner
Baiju is the clear winner with Chinese drinkers
Credit: China Culture Corner

Dinner and drinks

No wonder Diageo wants to tap China: it’s the world’s largest booze market, with sales of $178 billion* in 2017, according to data provider ISWR. Baiju dominates, while Scotch and other international spirits account for just 3%, leaving plenty of room for growth.

The goal is to get Chinese consumers to crack a bottle of Zhong Shi Ji at mealtime, when they’re most likely to drink. Save us a seat, and ganbei!

*All figures in U.S. dollars

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