Monday, July 29, 2019

"Wine" Quickie: Shao Xing Huadew Chinese Rice Wine

We've been getting a lot of customers at work lately looking for "rice wine" to cook with, so there must be some trending recipe out there that calls for it. Naturally you'd think they were talking about Sake, and one of Sake's nicknames is rice wine, but the kind that they're looking for is Chinese and used in A LOT of Chinese dishes. Chinese rice wine is produced entirely different than Sake, thus it's completely different in every way. For example, Sake is considered too sweet to use in the dishes that require rice wine but Fino Sherry is suggested as the best alternative. The contrast between Sake and Fino Sherry couldn't possibly be more enormous! But, upon tasting this rice wine, it's immediately apparent why Fino Sherry is suggested as an alternative because rice wine has the same oxidized profile, high alcohol, acidity, and body weight as Fino Sherry. But, and I can't speak for all rice wine since this is the only one I've ever had, it's got A LOT of bitter dark chocolate, prunes, and soy sauce in it's profile. So yeah! Rice wine is not in any way like Sake! Oh, and my thoughts about drinking this rice wine? YUCK!!!! It got better when I chilled the crap out of it with ice in a Yeti, but I would stick to just cooking with it. Maybe it'll work well in a coffee, though. Hmmm...

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