The city of Shaoxing, a town in Zhejiang province, has been making Chinese cooking wines for millennia. Its huangjiu - or yellow wine - is considered the pinnacle of the country's traditional wines, and a key ingredient in many of China's most popular dishes.
It can be used in soups, marinades and sauces to add a tangy flavor and fragrance to your dishes. It is also a popular beverage, with an amber liquid and a dry, sharp taste that enhances flavours without overpowering them.
There are a few other drinks that can work well as a substitute for Shaoxing Wine, including gin and grape juice. Both of these beverages are highly available and can easily replace the alcohol in a recipe.
Gin is a strong drink with a citrusy scent and a pine-like flavor due to the presence of juniper berries. It can work as a good alternative to Shaoxing wine for most meat and fish dishes, with its ingredients helping to reduce the strong smell that comes from the raw product.
Apple juice can also work as a rice wine substitute because it has an acidic, sweet flavor that mimics the rice wine taste and smell. However, it lacks the crispness and tanginess of rice wine.
Sake is another great substitute for Shaoxing wine, as it's a Japanese staple that can add depth to your recipes. It can be a bit lighter than the yellow wine from Shaoxing, but it can still provide an excellent flavor and aroma to your Asian dishes.