China: Modern history

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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Viticulture continued in China (jullien classified the wines of what he called Chinese Tartary). In 1892, Zhang Bishi, who was born in Guangdong in China, moved to Indonesia as a successful businessman, and was then consul in southern Asian countries for the Qing government, returned to China and established the Changyu winery in Yantai. He introduced 120 V. vinifera varieties from Europe, including Welschriesling, and apparently employed the then Austrian consul as his winemaker. Qingdao (formerly rendered as Tsingtao), the other winery established by Germans in 1930, was first known as the Melco winery. Shang Yi winery (today’s Beijing winery) was set up by French Catholics in 1910; Yi Hua winery was set up in Shanxi by Chinese in 1921, and Chang Bai Shan and Tung Hua (Tonghua) wineries at Jilin were set up and managed by the Japanese in 1936 and 1937 respectively. The wines produced by them were made mainly to cater for foreign communities in China.