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Nanjing's king of hops

By Xu Lin | China Daily | Updated: 2015-01-15 08:30

Nanjing's king of hops

[Photo provided to China Daily]

Gao has grown with the Chinese craft-beer revolution, too. He says more than 200,000 beer-lovers - from painters to musicians to reporters - have quaffed his various brews. He has sold 160 tons of Baby IPA alone, he adds.

According to him, craft beers account for less than 1 percent in the Chinese beer market, and many are imported. China only started to import craft beers about seven or eight years ago, but he is confident about the potential of the Chinese market.

"The good news is that our factory is starting to make a profit this year. The development of craft beer in the whole country is going well," he says.

In 2011, he published the book Get Your Own Brew, the first how-to book in Chinese about home-brewing with many well-tested recipes, he claims. One can brew beers at home, with proper water, malt, hops and yeast - and equipment such as a grinding machine and a fermenter.

He says home brewing took off around the same year, noting that about 10,000 Chinese have made their own beers. Besides big cities, nearly every second-tier city has an association or club for local craft-beer fans.

Quoting a report from Euromonitor International Ltd, a London-based market intelligence firm, he says the number of imported craft beers increased by about 50 to 70 percent in 2012 in China, and small beer houses are blooming across the country.

A lot of them know Master Gao.

Mike Peters contributed to this story.

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