Liubiju Pickle [Photo via tuchong.com]
The shop facing Liangshidian Street, a hutong at Qianmenwai, is the famous time-honored Liubiju Pickle and Sauce Shop with a history of over 450 years.
According to historical records, Liubiju was founded in the 9th Jiajing year of during the reign of Emperor Jiajing in the Ming Dynasty (1530). Its predecessor was a liquor brewery. To produce mellow, sweet liquor, six rules were set, namely millet and rice must be well-prepared, yeast preparation must be highly hygienic, ceramic articles must be of top quality, the duration and degree of heating must be appropriate, and water must be clean and pure. That was how Liubiju gained its name. Later the brewery was turned into a pickle and sauce shop, which made Liubiju more famous. The strict rules and good tradition of Liubiju have been passed down from one generation to another.
After the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, Liubiju offered more varieties and quantity of pickles and sauces thanks to the increased choices and production of vegetables in Beijing, as well as the enhanced techniques. Many traditional brand pickles and sauces were made into canned products and sold overseas. At present, Liubiju pickles and sauces are available in large vegetable markets all over the city.