Antique & Collectible Baijiu

If you’re looking to impress a visitor to your home, few things are more impactful than a wine cellar. Aged, fine vintages are a sign of class and sophistication – as well as being a great conversation starter. The times are a-changing, however. Whilst enthusiasm for wine and spirits such as whiskey will always be high, it’s just a matter of time before baijiu takes its place at the top table.

Not heard of baijiu? You’re in the majority – for now. This Chinese beverage has yet to make any real inroads into Western culture. This is sure to change soon though, as manufacturers of the spirit are launching a charm offensive to bring the drink into bars, restaurants and living rooms throughout the world.

It may take a while before baijiu comes the national beverage of any country other than China, as it’s something of an acquired taste. You’ll need an iron constitution to remain standing after your first few shots, as baijiu is hugely strong! Once you have mastered the method of consuming baijiu, however, you’ll be at the forefront of a brave new world.

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Jin Chan (Gold Toad) Chinese Mythology

Jin Chan (Gold Toad) Chinese MythologyThe toads have three feet with a coin in its mouth which can spin, two strings of coins running down its back, and the big dipper constellation on its back. The Jin Chan carries a lot of symbolism with it and has some interesting legends. It is believed that having one in your property will bring you luck, wealth, and prosperity.

Coins

In the toad’s mouth is a coin which spins. In Chinese the word “Zhuan” which means spin, or go around, sounds the same as the Chinese word for earn. So the spinning coin means that money will keep coming round and round. Traditionally in China, coins came on strings and many items were counted by strings of cash, so the two strings on the Jin Chan’s back symbolize having lot of wealth.

Positioning of the Toad

Most toads have a coin in their mouths, but occasionally you can find one that does not. The way the toads are positioned in the home depends on this coin. If the toad has a coin in its mouth, it should not face the door because it means that the money will be going out the door, so the toad should be placed facing you to keep the money coming in. If the toad does not have a coin in its mouth, the toad should face the door because it means that the toad will suck money in. It is considered bad to sit with a coin less toad facing you because it means it will take all your money.

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The Pixiu In Chinese Mythology

The Pixiu In Chinese MythologyOne of China’s more bizarre mythological creatures, the Pixiu is a very powerful creature which is very helpful to humans. Its appearance has changed greatly over the centuries, which often gets its images confused with that of the Qilin.

For the Chinese people, it is an important part of fengshui and is thought of as an auspicious creature which brings wealth to people.

They are fierce creatures. They have the head of a Chinese dragon, the body of a Chinese lion, and the legs of a Qilin. Some are depicted with wings. They are generally depicted with a big mouth with fangs, fat belly, and no anus to indicate that they are always hungry and are filled with gold and good fortune, which will never go away.

It is this aspect that make them very popular with businessmen and it can be seen in many shops and banks. Originally, they were depicted with two antlers. As time went on, their appearance evolved so that the males had a single antler and female had two antlers. Today, there is no distinction made between male and female and either can be depicted with one or two antlers.

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The Qilin In Mythology & Chinese Art

The Qilin In Chinese Art

One of China’s most important mythological animals, the Qilin is an auspicious animal believed to bring prosperity, serenity, and male offspring. The Qilin is occasionally described as the “Chinese Unicorn” because it is sometimes depicted with a single horn. It is said that the Qilin will appear with a sage or immortal and is sometimes the mount of an immortal.

Appearance:

The appearance of the Qilin has changed with each passing dynasty. During the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the Qilin was had the hooves of an ox with a dragon like head topped by a pair of horns and flame-like head ornaments. During the Qing Dynasty, the Qilin was a far more fanciful animal, which had the head of a dragon, with the antlers of a deer, fish scales, ox’s hooves, and a lion’s tail.

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Baijiu Chinese Liquor History

Baijiu Chinese Liquor HistoryHistorically alcohol has been attributed to the advancement of human culture, fuelling the development of art, religion, politics, philosophy and language. Alcohol is one of the most controversial by-products of civilisation; it is one of the most universally produced substances throughout history and China, not unlike the rest of the world, has been influenced and shaped by the liquid.

China and its people have been brewing and distilling alcohol for thousands of years.

In fact, it has been revealed that China were making a type of wine from materials such as rice, honey and fruit over nine thousand years ago. Evidence of the drink was found in Jiahu during an archaeological dig and as a result the drink is now regarded as the world’s oldest known alcoholic beverage.

China’s national liquor is called Baijiu, a clear, potent, spirit, with a typical percentage of 40 to 60 percent, which is distilled from fermented grain (See: How Is Baijiu Made), usually sorghum. (See: Baijiu Ingredients) It originates from the Ming Dynasty, making it a culturally and historically important alcoholic incarnation.

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