And what better way to commence the festivities than by indulging in a delightful traditional Chinese New Year beverage?
In Chinese culture, the act of sipping a drink goes beyond mere refreshment; it carries with it the intention of ushering in good fortune and prosperity. With each sip of these traditional beverages, one invokes well wishes and blessings for the year ahead.
Within this guide, we shall take a flavorful journey into the realm of traditional Chinese New Year beverages and their profound significance. From the comforting warmth of Chinese hot tea to the sweetness and auspiciousness of Chinese New Year Wine, we will delve into the most beloved and time-honored options. Along the way, you will uncover the unique histories, legends, and symbolic meanings associated with each of these beverages.
Whether your preference leans toward a non-alcoholic elixir or an alcoholic libation, you are bound to discover a beverage that will enhance and enrich your New Year celebrations, making them all the more enjoyable and imbued with meaning.
Drinks for Prosperity, Longevity, Love & Health
Chinese tea is a staple in traditional Chinese culture and is no exception during the Chinese New Year celebrations. The warm, comforting aroma and taste of Chinese tea promote tranquility and serenity, which is perfect for starting the New Year on a peaceful note.
Chinese tea symbolizes good luck and prosperity, as the tea leaves resemble gold ingots. The Chinese word for tea, “cha,” is a homophone of the word for “wealth.” So, one invites wealth and good fortune into their life by drinking tea.
Osmanthus wine, oh boy! This traditional Chinese wine is made from the sweet-smelling osmanthus flower.
It’s like a bouquet of flowers, but you can drink it. It’s a perfect addition to any special occasion, like weddings or Chinese New Year. It’s not only delicious but also said to symbolize love, unity, and happiness, so you’re drinking happiness in a bottle!
And let’s not forget about good luck and prosperity; this wine is like a magical elixir. Plus, it boosts longevity, so you can party all night and still feel fresh as a daisy in the morning. The sweet aroma is like a love letter to your senses; they’re in a love story with the wine.
Chrysanthemum tea, the drink of champions! It’s a traditional Chinese tea made from the same name flower, and it’s a popular choice during Chinese New Year because, let’s face it, who doesn’t want to rejuvenate and live a long life?
Its cooling properties are like a spa day in a cup, detoxifying your body and making you feel like a million bucks. It’s like a detox, but with no juice fasting or kale. It also dispels negative energy and brings good luck for the new year, like a personal good luck charm in liquid form.
And the best part is that you’ll be blessed with longevity, love, and good health by drinking chrysanthemum tea. It’s like a genie in a bottle but in tea form.
Jasmine tea, the drink of love! This traditional Chinese tea is like a love tincture in a cup, made by infusing green tea leaves with fragrant jasmine flowers. Its delicate, sweet aroma and light flavor are like a love letter to your taste buds.
The Jasmine flower is like a love magnet, bringing good luck and peace to relationships. So if you’re single and ready to mingle or just looking to spice up your current relationship, a cup of jasmine tea might do the trick. By drinking jasmine tea, you’ll be blessed with good luck in love and peace in your relationships. It’s a love guru in a teacup.
Chinese Rice Wine
Chinese Rice Wine, the drink of prosperity! This traditional Chinese alcoholic beverage is like a fizzy, fermented hug in a bottle made from glutinous rice. It’s often served during Chinese New Year for good luck, prosperity, and longevity. Plus, the wine’s rice represents wealth and abundance; it’s like liquid money!
The fermentation process symbolizes new beginnings. It’s also often served on formal or ceremonial occasions. Chinese Rice Wine is often enjoyed in small cups as a symbol of sharing good luck and wealth with others.
Goji Berry Juice
Goji Berry Juice, the elixir of youth! This juice is made from tiny but mighty red goji berries native to China. These berries are known for their superpowers: bright color, sweet taste, and high nutrient content. It’s a rainbow of health!
The color red it’s associated with good luck and happiness, and the high nutrient content is said to promote overall health and well-being; it’s like having a personal trainer in a bottle.
How to Incorporate the Drinks into Traditional Chinese New Year Customs and Rituals:
- During Chinese New Year, it’s traditional to serve Chinese tea to guests and family members as a sign of hospitality and respect.
- Osmanthus wine is often used in traditional Chinese wedding rituals and is also commonly served at family gatherings during Chinese New Year.
- Chrysanthemum tea is commonly served as a symbol of longevity and a traditional offering to deceased ancestors during the Chinese Ghost Festival, which takes place during the 7th month of the Chinese lunar calendar.
Keep in mind that all the drinks should be enjoyed fresh, and it’s best to follow the instructions for preparing, serving, and storing the drinks to have the best experience of the taste and their significance.
Additional Resources for Further Reading and Learning
- “The Chinese Art of Tea” by K. S. Lo is a comprehensive guide to Chinese tea’s history, culture, and customs.
- “The Chinese Wine Culture” by X. P. Wang is a detailed look at Chinese wines’ history, production, and cultural significance.
- “The History and Culture of Chinese Drinking” by Liu Ka-shiang, is a scholarly look at the role of drinking in Chinese history and culture.
- The Chinese Tea Culture Research Center (www.chinatea.org.cn) provides a wealth of information on all aspects of Chinese tea culture, including its history, production, and health benefits.
- The Chinese Rice Wine Society (www.chinesericewine.com) is a comprehensive resource on Chinese rice wine, including its history, production, and cultural significance.
- The Chinese Goji Berry Association (www.chinesegojiberry.org) provides information on the history, health benefits, and cultural significance of the goji berry, as well as recipes and other resources.
- Online classes:
- Tea Masterclass from the University of Chinese Culture, this class is designed for tea enthusiasts to explore the history, culture, and art of Chinese tea.
- The Wine Appreciation class from Tsinghua University is a comprehensive guide to Chinese wines’ history, production, and cultural significance.
- The Chinese New Year Celebration class from Beijing Language and Culture University is designed to help students understand and appreciate the Chinese New Year’s customs, rituals, and drinks.
These resources can provide a deeper understanding of the history, cultural significance, and traditional methods of preparing and serving traditional Chinese New Year drinks.