A 5,000-year-old brewery has been discovered in China. Archaeologists have unearthed what looks to be the oldest beer-making facility ever. At the Mijiaya site in the Central Plains of China, the team uncovered ancient underground rooms built between 3400 and 2900 B.C. The rooms contain funnels, pots and specialized jugs that could have been used for brewing, filtration and storage, and look very similar to what is used in the making of beer today.
Based on grain residue found inside the brewing vessels, researchers surmise that the recipe included a mix of fermented grains; broomcorn millet, barley and a chewy Asian grain called Chinese pearl barley, also known as Job’s tears. Though research shows that the starchy and sugary parts of plants known as tubers were used to sweeten and flavor the beer, Wang Jiajing, the archaeologist from Stanford University who is leading the study, speculates that the beverage probably had a slightly sour taste, based on the ingredients used.
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