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Thursday, June 18, 2015

Green Tea & Whisky - A Surprisingly Wonderful Drink - Thank You To The People Of China

Australians are always marvelling about some phenomenon that was relayed to them about Chinese culture by an Australian who has just come back from a trip, either pleasure, leisure or business. The business stories will always have something to do with size or price. The size of the factories, the number of workers, the variety of products. They are exciting stories of gargantuan proportions that make all of us Australians feel like pygmies in a world of giants.

There are also stories of food and drink. Tiger penis and dog sometimes get a mention. Exotic sea foods. Parts of animals we don't consume here and so on. I love these stories too. They make you squirm as the tales get told of not wanting to look like you weren't appreciative of your host taking you to a banquet dinner.

However, of all my favourite tales it's the simple cultural differences I love. One was a story about the fact that it is a status symbol in China to drink good quality red wine from other countries. In Australia one of the most highly regarded wines is Penfolds Grange. In China, so an Australian hospitality worker told me, he would often observe Chinese mixing Penfolds Grange with Coca-Cola. This seemed odd to me but since I didn't have access to Grange I didn't want to be judgemental until I'd tried it myself. This week, another, more practical option was presented to me by a friend who loves his Scotch. "Do you know", he began, "in China they often drink Scotch whisky with green tea?"

"With green tea?" I said disbelievingly. "Hot or cold?"

"Cold" he said.

"Sugary or not sugary?" I asked.

"Depends, as you want. We drank it with no sugar".

Alas, last night I bought some green tea from my local cafe and let it cool over night. Today I opened a fabulous bottle of Islay Scotch whisky by Lagavulin and in I popped a generous serve and did the same with green tea.

I am here to tell you that it was fabulous. I'm not sold on the Grange with Coca-Cola but the green tea and Scotch whisky is a green light for go. Now, I prefer to drink Scotch on it's own or with a dash of ice or water, but I think I am going to make this drink my own and it's a bit of Chinese culture I am happy to incorporate into my regime along with yum cha and my satay king prawns with fried rice.

To The People Of China, I salute you all!

PS: To see a video of the mix visit our Instagram page

Lagavulin & Green Tea - Thumbs Up!

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