Black, white and foamy

By Liu Zhihua ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-06-16 07:11:36

That ale was first brewed at President Barack Obama's request in 2011, using honey from hives on the White House lawn. The beer generated lots of online buzz after being served at parties for the Super Bowl and St Patrick's Day, and the White House blog released the recipe in September 2012, intriguing people around the world to make the brew. It is also available as a beer-making kit online.

Xia says Panda Brew revised the recipe to make the honey aroma stronger, and the flavor less layered, as well as to increase the sweetness, to appeal to Chinese drinkers.

The honey used in the brewing was from high mountains in Hunan province, where Pan and Xia spent months looking for the organic honey made by a bee species that is indigenous to China.

The honey is called baihua honey, or 100-flower honey. Nobody really counts the flowers - it just means "honey from a lot of flowers", Pan says, adding that the honey is believed to aid digestion and stomach health.

Xia notes the beekeepers who supply their honey have been in the business for four generations.

The brew looks red as the color is considered good in China and Panda Brew manages to achieve that without using chemical agents, Pan says.

The founders, who began home-brewing beer in simple cookware before their professional expansion, soon plan to brew new types with other Chinese fruits and herbs soon, to highlight even more Chinese flavors in the world of craft beers.

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