While researching the history of wine in China for my recent book China The New Wine Frontier, I found that Marco Polo mentioned, and even rated, the Chinese fermented-grape alcoholic beverage.
In his book The Travels of Marco Polo and other notes, the adventurer mentioned that Carachoco produced "good wine." (Today the oasis town is called Turpan or Turfan, way out in China's far west dusty Xinjiang Province.)
Unfortunately, Mr. Polo did not use Wine Spectator's 100 point rating scale, so we don't know if "good" means 80 points or 90.
However, if it were the year 1280, and you were on a 24-year journey across the driest parts of China, would a "good wine" be good enough to enjoy?
|Marco Polo and his brother traveled through landscape like this on their 24-year journey. When I'm out in the dry Xinjiang desert, heck, even when I'm flying over the parched landscape, I would certainly enjoy a Marco Polo rated "good wine."|