The Spirit of China – A Deep Journey into the Tradition, Quality and Influence of the Legendary Liquor

Welcome to the fascinating world of Moutai, the pride of China and a jewel in the crown of liquor culture! Moutai, a specialty of Maotai Town in Renhuai Township, Guizhou Province, is a national geographic tagged product of China.

As one of the world's big three distilled spirits, along with Scotch whiskey and French cognac, Moutai has earned a stellar reputation internationally. In addition, it is one of the "five swords of Moutai", the most prestigious liquors in China, and the precursor of the fermented soybean aroma Baijiu, with a rich history of more than 800 years.

Its complex flavor, unmistakable aroma and connection with Chinese cultural heritage give it an unrivaled status. Each sip is an experience, an invitation to explore the sophistication and elegance of a drink that has conquered palates around the world.

Ready to embark on a unique sensory journey? Discover Moutai, not just a drink, but a masterpiece of the art of distillation, a symbol of tradition and a bridge to an ancient culture.

Origin and Connection with the History and Culture of China

Moutai , with a rich history, is known for its unique production process and supreme quality. It has played an unparalleled role in the political, diplomatic and economic life of China, obtaining the favor of three generations of great figures and the applause of the people.

History of Moutai

Origin and Ancient History

The history of Moutai is closely linked to the culture and history of China . According to tradition, the indigenous inhabitants of the Chishui River, the Pu , already knew the art of distillation in the era of ancient Yu . During the Han dynasty , "Goujiang wine" produced in the present-day town of Moutai was prized by Emperor Wu of Han for its unique flavor. This marked Moutai's gradual entry into the Chinese court and higher society.

Medieval and Modern History

In the Tang and Song dynasties , Moutai's reputation continued to grow, becoming the tributary wine of successive dynasties, and spreading abroad via the Southern Silk Road . In the Qing Dynasty , Moutai production reached an unprecedented peak, with numerous famous wines such as "Moutai Chun" and "Moutai Shao Chun". Especially in the 43rd year of Kangxi (1704), "Ji Sheng Shao Fang" officially named his wine as Moutai .

In the early 20th century , Moutai's reputation not only continued to expand in China, but also began to gradually enter the international market. Especially after winning a prize at the 1915 Panama World's Fair , the demand for Moutai increased greatly, becoming a representative wine of China.

Modern History

Moutai went through many historical changes before 1949 , including three main distilleries: Chengyi, Ronghe and Hengxing . In 1951, these three distilleries merged, marking a new era in Moutai production. In the late 20th century, the Moutai production process was classified as a state secret , strictly protected by the government. In 2001 and 2006 , the Moutai distillation process was listed on the national tangible and intangible cultural heritage list, respectively.


Moutai is not only a drink, but also the essence of Chinese history and culture . From ancient times to the present, the development of Moutai has been closely linked to Chinese history, witnessing the rise and fall of the Chinese nation.

Characteristics and Flavor

Moutai is known for its clear and transparent appearance, with a prominent and enriched aroma. Its flavor is exquisite, smooth, fresh and succulent, with a full body and a long aftertaste. It is said that its fragrance can intoxicate three neighboring houses, and after opening a bottle, the fragrance lingers for up to ten miles.

What makes it even more special is the absence of any artificial fragrance; everything forms naturally during the fermentation process. Its alcoholic strength remains stable between 52°-54°.

Distillation Process

Moutai distillation is known as an unparalleled wonder. It uses high-quality glutinous sorghum as raw material and a large amount of wheat to create a high-temperature ferment. Through two rounds of ingredients, nine steamings, eight fermentations, seven distillations, and an aging phase lasting up to five years, this distinctive spirit is formed.

During this period, the liquor goes through unique processes such as "Reyong Xia Sha" (lowering sand at Chongyang Festival), "Duanwu Cai Qu" (stepping on ferment during Duanwu Festival) and long-term storage.

The Three Heights and the Three Lengths

Moutai technique includes "three heights": high temperature in fermentation, high temperature in fermentative accumulation, and high temperature in distillation, which varies between 10-15℃ higher than other famous liquors. The "three lengths" refer to the long production period, long storage time of the yeast, and the long age of the base liquor.

The Terroir Factor

Moutai's geographical location in a valley, with low wind speed and special climatic conditions, plays a crucial role in the breeding and reproduction of microorganisms that contribute to the unique flavor. Even attempts to replicate this liquor in other locations with the same ingredients and staff have failed, proving that Moutai and its homeland are inseparable.

Investment in Moutai

1. Scarcity

Moutai is known for its limited production , which creates a feeling of scarcity. The careful selection of ingredients and the meticulous manufacturing process contribute to this limitation in the quantity available. This, in turn, has boosted the price and made Moutai an attractive product for investors.

2. Appreciation Potential

The constant and increasing demand for Moutai, combined with its limited production , has led to a steady appreciation in its value . Investors often view Moutai as a safe, long-term investment with solid growth potential.

Moutai Collection

1. Cultural Significance

Moutai's collection is not only a matter of financial investment, but also an appreciation of Chinese cultural heritage . Moutai has a rich history and tradition , and owning a bottle is often seen as a symbol of status and refinement.

2. Opinions of Collectors and Experts

Collectors and liquor experts often view Moutai as a gem in any liquor collection. Its unique and complex flavor , along with its history, make it a precious collector's item.

3. Limited and Rare Editions

Moutai's special and rare editions are especially sought after by collectors. These editions are often produced in limited quantities and can command astonishing prices on the market.

Moutai as a Gift

Moutai is also a coveted and meaningful gift, especially when presented to friends or business partners in China. Giving a bottle of Moutai as a gift is seen not only as a gesture of good taste, but also as an expression of respect and appreciation . It can represent a deep connection and mutual understanding, particularly with Chinese friends, business partners or collaborators in China. It is a gift that transcends cultural barriers and is a symbol of hospitality and honor .


Moutai investment and collection is not simply a matter of financial gain. It also represents a deep connection to Chinese culture and an appreciation for craftsmanship and history. With its scarcity and appreciation potential , Moutai continues to be a popular choice for investors and collectors alike, and as a gift that embodies respect and tradition .

Guizhou Moutai Identification Methods and Common Types of Counterfeiting

Common ways of counterfeiting:

1. Bottle filling (add liquid) :

  • Some dishonest sellers may refill bottles of authentic Maotai that have leaked.
  • They use a high-pressure needle to inject unknown liquid into the bottle.
  • You can spot this fake by looking in bright light; the holes are visible on the white bottle.

2. New wine in an old bottle :

  • This technique involves reusing authentic Maotai bottles and filling them with a fake liquor.
  • It is particularly common in Maotai bottles produced after the year 2000.
  • The focus should be on the seal part.

3. Old label on new wine :

  • The labels on new bottles are swapped for old ones to make the liquor appear older and therefore more valuable.
  • Requires in-depth knowledge of Maotai tags over time to detect.
Techniques to identify Guizhou Moutai:

1. Secret marks in new versions (after 2009) :

  • Numbers inside the tape.
  • The word "liquor" on the back label has a different font.

2. Number code on transparent film (1996-2009) :

  • The date printed on the transparent film has a different shape under a microscope.
  • Fakes often have an irregular appearance.

3. Characteristics of the red print (1991-1996) :

  • The word "Maotai" in the center of the seal is slightly raised.
  • The red stamp texture has small bubbles; fakes are often too rough or lack these bubbles.
Important turning points:
  • 1957: Change from "苔" to "台".
  • 1966: Change from traditional to simplified characters.
  • 1985: Change of liquid volume from 540ml to 500ml.
Warning and recommendation:

The methods mentioned above are for reference only, and unfortunately, at present, there is no way to 100% guarantee the authenticity of Moutai. Even well-known auction houses have had Guizhou Moutai fakes. The reason is simple: Guizhou Moutai forgery is an ongoing process, which means that there will still be new methods and techniques that will appear.

Famous Cases and Evaluations:

Guizhou Moutai is one of the most renowned alcoholic beverages in China, with a long history and rich culture. It has been praised by many wine critics and famous figures.

  1. Deng Xiaoping , the Chinese leader, was known to appreciate the Moutai and wore it at important diplomatic events.
  2. Richard Nixon , the former US president, enjoyed Moutai during his historic visit to China in 1972.
  3. Robert Parker , a famous wine critic, has praised Moutai's complexity and depth of flavor.
  4. Jim Murray , another well-known spirits critic, has highlighted the unique quality and tradition of Moutai distilling.

Moutai Product Recommendations:

Moutai Flying Fairy (飞天茅台) :

High price
Description : It is one of the most recognized products, perfect for special occasions and luxury gifts.

Moutai Year of the Ox (牛年茅台):

Half price
Description : A limited edition to celebrate the Year of the Ox, suitable for collectors and Moutai enthusiasts.

Moutai Prince (茅台王子):

Price : Moderate
Description : A more affordable but still high-quality option, ideal for those who want to enjoy Moutai without spending a lot.

Moutai Yingbin (茅台迎宾) :

Low price
Description : It is an economical and versatile option, suitable for daily consumption and for those who are beginning to explore the world of Moutai.

International awards

  • 1985 : Moutai received the Gold Leaf Award from the International Commission of Gastronomy and Tourism in Paris, France.
  • 1986 : Moutai was awarded the Gold Prize at the 12th International Food Fair in Paris.
  • 1989 : Moutai won the Gold Prize at the First Beijing International Exhibition.
  • 1991 : Moutai received the Gold Award at the Second Beijing International Exhibition.
  • 1992 : Moutai won the Gold Award at the 4th International Famous Wine Exhibition in Tokyo, Japan.
  • 1992 : Moutai was awarded the Gold Award at the First International Famous Wine Competition in the United States.
  • 1992 : Moutai received the highest Gold Award at the Hong Kong International Food Exhibition.
  • 1993 : At the International Wine Exhibition in Bordeaux, France, Moutai 53°, 43°, 38° was awarded a Special Honor Award .
  • 1994 : Moutai won the Gold Award at the 5th Asia-Pacific International Trade Fair.
  • 1994 : In commemoration of the 80th anniversary of the Panama International Exposition, Moutai received the first Special Gold Award .
  • 2021 : Moutai was ranked 34th in the list of "Asia's 500 Best Brands" .
  • 2021 : It was selected as second on the list of "The Chinese Brands with the Most History and Culture" of 2021.
  • 2022 : On June 15, Moutai was selected in the list of "The 100 Most Valuable Brands in the World in 2022" , ranking 14th .
  • 2022 : In August, the British brand evaluation agency "Brand Finance" published the list of "The Best Alcoholic Beverage Brands in the World 2022" , with Moutai in first place among liquor brands, with a brand value of $42.9 billion .
  • 2023 : On January 18, Brand Finance published the list of "The 500 Most Valuable Brands in the World" . Moutai, with a brand value of $49.7 billion , ranked 21st , the seventh Chinese brand on the list .


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