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Thread: liquor

  1. #1
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    liquor

    How is it we don't have a general liquor thread here yet? Well, we do now.

    Chinese woman chugs $190 of cognac at airport security after being told she couldn't bring it on the plane
    Brad Cohen, USAToday 10:30 a.m. EDT August 26, 2015



    Back when I was a kid, my mom used to guilt me into eating the rest of my dinner — which was probably dried out chicken or, if I was lucky, Kraft macaroni and cheese — by reminding me that there were children starving in Africa. The mental image of those teary-eyed emaciated kids from Sally Struthers ads was usually enough for me to force myself to swallow another two or three bites of that chicken.

    I can only hope that Jiu Jin Zhao was thinking of all the teary-eyed old men across Europe longing for another sip of cognac after closing time when she allegedly proceeded to down an entire bottle of $190 Rémy Martin XO Excellence at the security line of Beijing Capital international airport.

    When airport security explained Zhao couldn't bring a bottle more of liquid exceeding 100 ml on the plane, she reportedly decided that she would be ****ed if she would waste even one drop of such finely distilled French liquor. According to the Guardian, as reward for her impressive-yet-terrifying feat, police and airline staff denied her a seat on the plane out of concern that her inebriation would be a safety risk. This seems like a good move, because nobody needs another drunk flier running around the airplane cabin topless.

    From South China Morning Post:

    “'She was so drunk… she couldn’t even stand up herself. We took her to a room in a wheelchair so she could rest,' the officer told The Beijing Times.
    Curiously enough, this isn't the first time something like this has happened. Back in June, a pair of Chinese travelers chugged a bottle of aphrodisiac wine at Baiyun International Airport when security told them they couldn't carry on the bottle, which means we're one incident away from this becoming a trend in China.
    This reminds me of an episode from our baijiu thread.
    Gene Ching
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  2. #2
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    Here we go...

    Tasting China’s New, $250-a-Bottle Luxury Wine, Backed by LVMH
    Meet the first serious—and seriously good—red from the fledgling wine country.
    Elin McCoy
    April 19, 2016 — 8:48 AM PDT

    The makers of a new red blend from China are aiming to lure luxury wine connoisseurs from such established regions as Napa and Bordeaux, betting they’ll spend $250 a bottle on something novel and adventurous.
    I got a sneak preview of the first vintage of the wine at a dinner last week in Manhattan, where I was the first U.S. journalist to taste it. The Chinese red, which is backed by luxury powerhouse LVMH, is evocatively labeled Ao Yun, which means “roaming above the clouds.” It’s a reference to the craggy, remote aeries in which the grapes are grown in the Tibetan foothills.


    Jean-Guillaume Prats, president of Moët Hennessy Estates & Wines division, discusses its new Chinese wine, Ao Yun, at a dinner at La Chine restaurant in New York on April 12, 2016. Source: Moët Hennessy USA

    With the hefty price tag, only 24,000 bottles in existence, and a romantic “epic journey” story, this red blend seems squarely aimed at thrill-seeking collectors anxious to try the latest. Is it worth it? If you measure value by the effort and money it took to make the wine, the answer is yes.
    As for the flavor, the quality is definitely there—if not quite commensurate with the price point. Deep-colored, luscious 2013 Ao Yun is certainly the best red from China I’ve yet sampled. The blend of 90 percent cabernet sauvignon and 10 percent cabernet franc is ripely fruity, dark, and powerful, with a spicy tang, a hint of licorice, and a silky smooth texture. It’s nearly 15 percent alcohol and tastes unique, something like a combo of a Spanish Ribera del Duero and a Napa cult cab. There’s tons of tannin, so it should age for a long, long time. It was a pretty good accompaniment to braised short ribs, too.

    The Backstory
    But let me back up. Before dinner, as we sipped another LVMH wine (a 2006 Dom Perignon), the president of Moet Hennessy’s Estates and Wines division Jean-Guillaume Prats, filled me in on its complicated story.
    The venture began in 2009, when Christophe Navarre, chief executive officer of Moët Hennessy, indulged a long-held dream to find a spot in China that would be perfect for making red wine. He tapped Australian enologist Tony Jordan (who had established Chandon in Australia and managed the company’s other wine estates there) to undertake a several-year-long search throughout China for the best terroir.
    Jordan rejected provinces in which other producers are deeply engaged in the race to produce a great Chinese red. Shandong, an eastern coastal province where Château Lafite Rothschild has a joint-project, was too wet. Ningxia, where Moët Hennessy founded a Chandon sparkling wine facility on the Yellow River in 2013, was too cold; vines have to be covered up in winter so they don’t freeze.


    Mainri Snow Mountain rises above the villages that provide the grapes for Ao Yun. Source: Moët Hennessy USA

    He ended up in the northwestern part of Yunnan province, adjoining Tibet, where Jesuit missionaries had planted vines in the 19th century.
    In 2002, the local Chinese government helped farmers in 25 or so Tibetan villages on the steep slopes above the Mekong River plant cabernet vines as a way to diversify their crops. Moët Hennessy selected four villages, two on each side of the river, at elevations from 7,200 to 8,500 feet, for their grape potential.
    The 320 plots of vines the company controls are interspersed with rows of tomato and occasional hashish plants. Moët Hennessy has a 50-year lease on the vineyards, a partnership with Chinese baijiu producer VATS. The closest major city is Shangri-La, named for the peaceful utopia in the novel Lost Horizon.

    The Climate
    “It’s not about soil,” insisted Prats, “but about how many hours of sunshine you have and what the cycle of weather is.”
    Thanks to the altitude, the climate is dry and cool, but because of shadows from the mountains, there’s sunlight only from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The growing cycle is 160 days from flowering to harvest, longer than the 120 in Bordeaux. “Think of it like slow cooking,” explained Prats. “Sunlight over a longer period of time creates intensity and tannins that are very, very silky.” The soil is gravel that washed down from the mountains.


    A bottle of Ao Yun. Source: Moët Hennessy USA

    “But making wine there is a logistical nightmare,” Prats admitted. From Shangri-La, visitors must climb into a four-wheel-drive vehicle and drive four to five hours on a narrow, treacherous road through a mountain pass at 14,000 feet. He showed me photos of getting caught in a snowstorm en route. Carrying bottles of oxygen in the car in case of dizziness, he said, is essential.

    An Uphill Battle
    Maxence Dulou, the estate manager from Bordeaux, faces other challenges: There’s no electricity on the farms, and tenders use yaks instead of tractors. Everything is organic and has to be done by hand.
    For the first vintage, the fermentation tanks didn’t arrive; the truck driver bringing them had ended up in jail after running over someone, and the truck and tanks were impounded. So the grapes were fermented in a rented facility in the kind of ceramic jars used to create the potent Chinese liquor baijiu.
    The winery in Adong, the highest village at 8,500 feet, was finally completed in the spring of 2014.
    Why did a luxury company known for elegant champagnes, sophisticated handbags, and ethereal perfumes decide to take on the challenge of making great wine in such a remote region of China?


    Vineyards on both sides of the Mekong River provide grapes for Ao Yun . Source: Moët Hennessy USA

    Prats, former director of Château Cos d’Estournel in Bordeaux, reminds me that Moët Hennessy went to Argentina in 1959 and was the first French company to invest in Napa, back in 1973.
    The wine will debut at VinExpo Hong Kong in May and in Europe in June, with the official China launch on June 6 at the French embassy in Beijing. Only one-third of the bottles are reserved for China, but Prats has already received Chinese offers to buy the entire production.
    Moët Hennessy has earmarked 500 cases for the U.S.; the wine will arrive at New York wine merchant Sherry-Lehmann in September and will be carried in three shops in Washington, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.
    My first trip to China was for a tournament in Jinan, Shandong in '91. It was sponsored by a liquor company. They gave us complimentary bottles of liquor - some Chinese stuff and some regular grape wine. The wine was horrible. We dubbed it 'Godawful' wine. China has come a long way since then.
    Gene Ching
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  3. #3
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    Archaelogists have discovered a 200-year-old Brandy

    Wonder how much those bottles will sell for if they decide to auction them off.

    Archaelogists discover 200-year-old underground pub in Manchester
    Bottles were found intact still full with brandy

    Matt Payton Tuesday 27 September


    The remains of the 19th century pub, the Astley Arms Manchester Evening News

    Archaelogists have discovered a 200-year-old underground pub during building work on a office building in central Manchester.

    Excavators discovered untouched bottles full of of brandy and crockery branded with the 18th-century landlord of the Astley Arms.

    Archaelogists were brought to the site of a future 13-storey skyscraper as part the planning process and found the remains of houses as well as the pub.

    Some of the recovered pottery items were inscribed with the name of Thomas Evans, the pub's landlord in 1821.

    Aidan Turner, supervisor of the archaelogy site told Manchester Evening News: "We found pottery and bottle from the Astley Arms which actually has the name of the proprietor Thomas Evans, and the name of the pub written on it, so it must have been a commissioned piece for the pub.

    "It’s brilliant because you can suddenly connect it to the local people in the area. We looked online about his family history and one of his descendants now lives in Texas."

    According to local historians, the pub was renamed to Paganini Tavern in 1840 before returned to being called Astley Arms remaining open as 1928.

    Some of the recovered items will be displayed at the city's Museum of Science.

    The site developer of the build, James Alderson said: “It’s amazing knowing there’s so much history at this site and it’s really exciting.

    “I never expected this kind of thing to be found but we are really fascinated by it all."
    Gene Ching
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  4. #4
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    Intriguing barometer of growth

    My personal experience has been that Chinese immigrants to the U.S. have always liked Remy & Hennessy. And over a decade ago, I brought single malt to China by request of my guanxi.

    Top-Selling Spirits in China Reflect Shift in Tastes By Nathan Reiff | October 24, 2016 — 12:36 PM EDT

    Remy Cointreau SA has posted revenue figures for the second quarter of 2016 that far surpass estimates for the liquor manufacturer. Among the main reasons is an uptick in sales in China. A change in consumer culture, personal wealth, and buying trends in China has led to a dramatic expansion of the high-end and luxury brand market in that part of the world. Remy Martin Cognac is one of several liquors that has been taking off in China, posting higher sales figures than previously for recent months and years. Here are a few of the top-selling spirits in the Chinese market.

    Remy Cointreau
    While analysts predicted a gain of 4.3% in Remy Cointreau sales for the second quarter of 2016, the company posted growth of 7.4% instead. This marks a change from the previous quarter, in which sales went unchanged. Alongside this news, the company's stock climbed by nearly 7%.

    A shift in China's governmental policy may have helped to contribute to the influx of new sales. The Chinese government had previously worked to eliminate what it deemed to be extravagant spending, but with the passage of time sales of cognac had started to rise once again. The past quarter saw sales growth of Remy Martin Cognac of 9%, a sizable boost over the 6% that analysts predicted.

    Hennessy
    Remy Martin is not the only liquor seeing its sales figures in the Chinese market climb. Hennessy has also posted impressive sales results in several recent quarters, although in this case sales growth for the most recent quarter was not as impressive as it had been previously. Pernod Ricard, a Parisian distiller and owner of Martell cognac, is awaiting sales figures for China and has indicated that it is too early to say if the country's sales of the cognac it distributes will be as successful.

    Various Whisky Brands
    Outside of cognac, other liquors have seen a surge in sales in China in recent years, coinciding with the country's developing wealthy class and their emerging taste for expensive, luxury items. Whisky sales have risen considerably, with Johnnie Walker continuing to sell well throughout the country. The influx of items with a cache of appeal as western luxury brands has also extended to watches, vehicles, clothing, and more. At the same time, sales of traditional baiju, or Chinese rice wine, account for a significant portion of liquor sold in the country. And the exchange has begun to move in the other direction as well, as baiju brands are finding greater footing in western markets in recent years as well. With the continuing development of a luxury consumer culture in China, it is a safe bet that high-end liquor sales will remain high.
    Gene Ching
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  5. #5
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    I'm usually pretty open minded...

    ...but this one is a whole lotta NOPE for me.

    Would you pay $325 for a non-alcoholic spirit? Seedlip hopes you will
    ‘World’s first luxury distilled non-alcoholic spirit’, sold globally since 2015, has Hong Kong debut at Taste of Hong Kong festival and cocktail bars in March
    BY KIM SOO-JIN
    7 FEB 2018 / UPDATED ON 8 FEB 2018



    “Dry January”, which saw many people give up alcohol for the month, may be over, but that doesn’t mean you have to stop. Indeed, one non-alcoholic drink certainly looks very tempting.

    Seedlip, which retails for HK$328 for 700ml, is designed to keep your non-alcoholic streak going strong.

    Billed as the world’s first luxury distilled non-alcoholic spirit, its tagline is: ‘What to drink when you’re not drinking”.

    Hong Kong’s best mixologists rival Michelin-starred chefs

    Just to be clear, Seedlip isn’t a fancy way of saying “juice” (although we admit we thought so at first). The drinks are the product of a bespoke maceration process, where the ingredients undergo a six-week copper-pot distillation and filtration, much like that a spirit would undergo.

    The finished product is then best served with tonic, or used as the base for martinis and other sour-style drinks, to create a complex, full-bodied non-alcoholic cocktail (or, you know, a mocktail).

    There are two flavours, or “expressions” as the brand calls them: Seedlip Garden 108 and Seedlip Spice 94.


    Seedlip Garden 108. Photo: Rob Lawson

    Seedlip Garden 108, is described as “the essence of the English countryside” with top notes of peas and hay.

    Holding the concoction together is a herbal base of spearmint, rosemary and thyme.


    The Seedlip Spice 94. Photo: Rob Lawson

    Seedlip Spice 94, as the name suggests, packs a punch. Allspice berries and cardamom are mixed with lemon and grapefruit peel (which also serve as the top notes) and finished off with a touch of bitterness from cascarilla and oak bark.

    The idea for Seedlip started with founder Ben Branson in his kitchen, a copper still and a copy of The Art of Distillation.

    Branson’s family has a 300-year old history of farming, making him well-prepped in terms of understanding herbal mixes.
    Yet more than the ingredients used, it’s the figures touted by the brand that spark our interest: Seedlip contains no calories, no sugar, no added sweeteners and no artificial flavours. Sounds pretty healthy to us.


    The non-alcoholic Seedlip Garden 108 (left) and Seedlip Spice 94.

    These flavours will make their official debut in Hong Kong during Taste of Hong Kong, from March 22 to 25.

    You can find them used as alcohol alternatives in top cocktail bars, such as New York’s The Dead Rabbit and Dandelyan in London, and served in more than 100 Michelin-starred restaurants, including The Fat Duck in the UK and New York’s Eleven Madison Park.

    In Hong Kong, it will be offered at select bars and restaurants, such as The Murray, Hong Kong and Kwoon by The Woods, both in Central; The Pawn, in Wan Chai, and Potato Head Hong Kong, in Sai Ying Pun.
    Gene Ching
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  6. #6
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    Römerwein

    The oldest bottle of wine in the world remains unopened since the 4th Century
    Jul 20, 2018 Larissa Harris



    For a few years now, contemporary historians have been debating the future of the oldest bottle of wine in the world, known as the Speyer wine bottle, or “Römerwein.”

    Historians have split opinions on whether the bottle should be opened or not.

    This extremely rare artifact is 1,650-years-old and it is placed in the Historical Museum of the Palatinate in Germany.

    The glass amphora has handles in the shape of dolphins and is sealed with wax. The contents of the bottle is about one-third olive oil which in the past was used as a preservative that prevented the wine from oxidizing.


    The world’s oldest known bottle of wine, 325 AD, Historical Museum of the Palatinate, Speyer, Germany. Photo by Following Hadrian CC-BY 2.0/ Flickr

    The Speyer bottle was found in the grave of a Roman nobleman in 1867, in the Rhineland-Palatine region of Germany and caused a real stir among historians and archaeologists at the time.

    It’s been said that the noble owner, believed to be a high ranking Legionnaire, was buried with the bottle of wine, an ancient custom which represents the Romans’ beliefs in the after-life, that is, sending valuable objects with the body of the deceased so she or he can use them in the “hereafter.”

    Reportedly, the tomb near the city of Speyer also contained the sarcophagi of his two spouses.


    The Speyer wine bottle. Photo by Immanuel Giel CC BY-SA 3.0

    The antique bottle, which represents thousands of years of human history and customs, was named after the city of Speyer. In the glory days of Ancient Rome, wine and wine cults were diligently observed.

    One of the inventions of Hero of Alexandria, an engineer who was centuries ahead of his time, was a delightful party centerpiece that seemingly turned one liquid into another.


    Speyer, Germany

    His trick jug incorporated two separate, sealed compartments and some clever pneumatics to make it seem that water added to the vessel was dispensed as wine. This is one of several similar devices that Hero describes in his Pneumatica.

    During WWI, a chemist analyzed the Speyer bottle but never opened it so the wine was given to the Historical Museum of the Palatinate collection in Speyer. Over time, numerous scientists have hoped to obtain permission to analyze the bottle’s contents thoroughly, though nobody has been granted one yet.

    Some scientists and microbiologists are adamant that the bottle shouldn’t be opened, among them Ludger Tekampe, the curator of the Folklore Wine Museum collection. “We are not sure whether or not it could stand the shock to the air. It is still liquid and there are some who believe it should be subjected to new scientific analysis but we are not sure.” said Tekampe on the matter.


    “The Roman wine from Speyer.” Photo by Altera levatur – CC BY SA 4.0

    This rare artifact of the ancient world was created during the early days of the tradition of wine production and consumption, which was begun by the ancient Greeks. The tradition was later embraced by the ancient Romans, who also took Dionysus, the Greek god of agriculture, wine, and fertility, and renamed him Bacchus.

    Contrary to the general notion and belief that the older the wine is, the better, the Speyer wine is presumed to be undrinkable. According to the Daily Mail, Professor Monika Christmann said that although the Speyer wine might not be microbiologically spoiled, it “would not bring joy to the palate.”
    Why bother opening it now?
    Gene Ching
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  7. #7
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    Fok Hing hilarious

    Hong Kong gin brand’s name ruled offensive in UK
    The name Fok Hing Gin ‘is clearly intended to shock’, said a complainant to a UK trade body, which agreed it was inappropriate to link a name to a profanity
    ‘We strive to be a brand that celebrates the language, culture and heritage of Hong Kong,’ the gin’s maker said, pointing out it was named after a city street

    Kylie Knott
    Published: 12:24pm, 15 Nov, 2021

    Fok Hing Gin is made in Hong Kong by Incognito Group. A British drinks trade body ruled its name offensive. Photo: Facebook/Fok Hing Gin
    A brand of Hong Kong gin has come under scrutiny from the British drinks industry watchdog after it was deemed offensive.
    Fok Hing Gin, produced by Incognito Group, came under scrutiny from the Portman Group – a trade body composed of alcoholic beverage producers and brewers in Britain – after a complaint from a member of the public who is a licensing officer.
    “The name of the product is clearly intended to shock and be pronounced as an offensive term,” the person making the complaint said.
    “Personally I wouldn’t want to see this product on family supermarket shelves or being promoted in an environment where children have access – such as most social media sites.”
    The complaint was made in relation to rule 3.3 – that a drink’s name, its packaging and any promotional material or activity should not cause serious or widespread offence, according to a statement on the Portman Group website.
    It is the first time a complaint about a drink’s name has been upheld in relation to causing serious or widespread offence.
    Commenting on the decision, the chairwoman of the Independent Complaints Panel, Nicola Williams, said: “This is the first time since the addition of the rule on serious or widespread offence that a product’s name and packaging was considered under the rule in terms of offensive language.
    “It is not appropriate for marketing materials to purposefully link a name to profanity and no responsible marketing should cause serious or widespread offence.”
    Posts on Fok Hing Gin’s social media pages addressed “To the Karen who got offended by our name …” said the gin’s name paid homage to Fuk Hing Lane, a street in Causeway Bay, on Hong Kong Island.

    The post on Fok Hing Gin’s social media pages. Photo: courtesy of Facebook/Fok Hing Gin
    On the Portman Group website, Incognito Group explained that the name had been changed from ‘Fuk’ to ‘Fok’ to differentiate it from offensive language used in Western culture.
    “We strive to be a brand that celebrates the language, culture and heritage of Hong Kong. We are grateful to our UK consumers who have warmly welcomed us into their gin collection and we are delighted to continue serving the market.
    “Through consultation with the Portman Group, we have agreed to update the reverse label to be more descriptive of the details that inspired our brand, and look forward to introducing our UK fans to a little bit of Hong Kong history whilst they enjoy FOK HING GIN during the forthcoming festive season and beyond.”
    The company was recommend to change the back label to incorporate more of the brand heritage story.


    Kylie Knott

    After many years with the Post, Kylie Knott found her calling on the culture and lifestyle desk. She writes about the environment, animal welfare, food and the arts.
    I totally want a bottle of Fok Hing Gin now. It's top of my xmas list.
    Gene Ching
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  8. #8
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    Fuk the haters!

    SCMP Columnist
    My Hong Kong
    by Luisa Tam
    The F word ‘fuk’ represents one of Chinese culture’s greatest values, and Hong Kong gin brand’s name is meant to celebrate, not curse
    Fok Hing Gin’s trouble with UK watchdogs over its name highlights a lack of cultural awareness about a word that means ‘fortune’ or ‘good luck’ in Chinese
    Hong Kong is full of innocuous street names that could upset the faint of heart – just look at Wan King Path and Fuk Man Road in Sai Kung

    Luisa Tam

    Published: 10:45am, 20 Nov, 2021

    Never would I imagine feeling so protective towards the “f” word, but this particular “f” word probably isn’t the one that you are thinking of.
    The Chinese word fuk, which means “fortune” or “good luck” in English, encapsulates one of the greatest values in Chinese culture.
    In Hong Kong, when we hear people say zuk fuk to someone, it means they want to impart a blessing of luck, success, prosperity and happiness onto the recipient.
    During the Lunar New Year, you will see front doors adorned with the Chinese character fuk on red paper and turned upside down for extra luck.

    Unfortunately, its Cantonese pronunciation is similar to a certain Western swear word.
    That’s why the Hong Kong-based brand Fok Hing Gin, named after Fuk Hing Lane in Causeway Bay, a popular shopping area on Hong Kong Island, has run into some trouble.
    The brand is trying to break ground in the UK but has been deemed offensive by an industry watchdog comprising British alcoholic beverage producers and brewers.
    It has been asked to expand on its brand story after a complaint from a member of the British public who said: “The name of the product is clearly intended to shock and be pronounced as an offensive term. Personally, I wouldn’t want to see this product on family supermarket shelves.”

    UK-based fashion brand French Connection UK is often initialised as “FCUK”and, despite some initial controversy after the rebranding in 1991, continues to be known as such today. Photo: FCUK
    Some consumers may agree, but the consensus – at least on this side of the world – is that these complaints are rooted in a lack of cultural awareness.
    The phrase fuk hing spells luck, fortune and thriving growth, so to speak. Who wouldn’t want to name their product or business after that?
    There is nothing wrong with creating a memorable brand identity and Fok Hing Gin has done exactly what it has set out to do, which is to pay homage to Hong Kong and its colonial roots. But please don’t ever say the Chinese word fuk is profane.
    Incognito Group, the owner of the label, should go the whole nine yards and use the original Romanised spelling “Fuk” rather than “Fok”. There is no shame in paying homage to Fuk Hing Lane as a means of celebrating Cantonese language and its culture. The brand has doubled down by pushing clever marketing phrases like “Fok the haters”.

    Fok Hing Gin claims to celebrate the language, culture and heritage of Hong Kong. Photo: Facebook / Fok Hing Gin
    A British friend, MJ, who is a long-time Hong Kong resident and fluent Cantonese speaker, is infuriated by the complaint. “These people have nothing better to do with their lives than to pick holes in an obvious joke. They should be looking at more important things such as global warming.”
    My Irish friend, Paul, points out the double standards of this cultural controversy by drawing attention to the 1990s rebranding of French Connection.
    The UK-based global fashion retailer and wholesaler rebranded itself as “French Connection UK” in 1991, which is often initialised as “FCUK”. Despite some controversy at the initial stage of its rebranding, French Connection remains known as “FCUK” today.
    “I have no problem with the brand Fok Hing,” Paul says. “In this case, any obscenity lies in the mind of the beholder, not the name itself. Moreover, alcohol is usually sold in places that minors shouldn’t be allowed to access.”
    An Italian friend, Alex, says: “It’s a local name intended to preserve its company’s heritage. It’s not racist or ****phobic or insulting to a targeted group of people. In fact, it’s great to see Hong Kong products abroad.”
    If you look around the city, there are scores of innocuous street names that could upset the faint of heart. Just look at Wan King Path and Fuk Man Road, both of which are found in Sai Kung, known as the “back garden of Hong Kong” in the New Territories.
    Even the Hong Kong Trade Development Council has on its sourcing website a company called Fuk Hing Manufacturing.

    Fuk Hing Manufacturing is included on the Hong Kong Trade Development Council’s website. Photo: Fuk Hing Manufacturing
    If we were to take these complaints against Fok Hing Gin seriously, perhaps the Hong Kong Tourism Board should “rebrand” certain street names for the sake of appeasing these priggish complaints.
    This is far from the first time that a brand name has offended British sensibilities. In 2015, a London coffee shop kowtowed to legal pressure and changed its shop name from “****offee” to “F*ckoffee” after some consumers took offence at the name. The general public mood was that some people simply couldn’t take a joke; even then-London mayor Boris Johnson supported the business’ humorous intentions.
    But some food for thought. There are a handful of English words that don’t go down well in some other countries.
    For example, the word “pick” sounds a lot like the Norwegian word for male genitals pikk; “lull” is spelt and pronounced similarly to the word lul in Dutch, which also means male genitals. You might be surprised to know that “cookie” means something different in Hungary. Yes, you guessed right, it pertains to male genitalia (but of a more diminutive stature).
    I probably need a Fok Hing Gin and tonic after all that.
    Cheers!


    Luisa Tam is a Post correspondent who also hosts video tutorials on Cantonese language that are now part of Cathay Pacific’s in-flight entertainment programme
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    Gene Ching
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