Local products and specialties from the ancient Shaobo Town are on display at the Beijing Grand View Garden on Tuesday, May 18, 2010. The town in Southeast China's Jiangsu Province has sent representatives to the capital to promote its rich tourism resources and splendid gourmet food culture. [Photo: CRIENGLISH.com]
Food has long been regarded as an indispensable part of regional culture, and Shaobo Town in southeast China's Jiangsu Province can introduce itself as a historic town remarkable for its long history as well as its splendid food culture.
On Tuesday, representatives from Shaobo showed off its food and tourism resources at Grand View Garden, a famous garden in south Beijing.
A folk dance kicked off the festival at 10 o'clock on Tuesday morning, with women wearing festive costumes performing drum dances. Fresh local delicacies and knick-knacks on display in the park attracted crowds of tourists.
Hosted by the Beijing Phoenix Suyuan Hotel, this is the third food festival of its kind in the past three months. The events aim to introduce to the capital city the culture and food of Jiangsu Province's ancient towns, and foster tourism exchanges between the two.
According to the host, all ingredients for the festival's foods were transported all the way from Shaobo, in order to bring Beijing gourmands the freshest and most original dishes.
At a news conference held at the Phoenix Suyuan Hotel, the Beijing Xuanwu Tourism Bureau signed important agreements with Shaobo, in joint efforts to boost regional tourism as well as establishing strategic cooperation.
As an important commercial town on the Yangtze River, Shaobo is located in central Jiangsu Province and has an area of 98.6 square kilometers, and a population of 100,000. It occupies a vital geographic position along the Yangtze and Huaihe Rivers.
Originally named Gantang, the town was built 1,600 years ago during the Qing Dynasty (1616 – 1912). Emperor Qianlong made six inspection tours to the southern area and spent time in Shaobo each time.
Shaobo boasts a variety of distinctive dishes, such as Shaobo water chestnuts, crisp Shaobo smothered fish, Shaobo sausage, salty goose, and also, the most well-known dish, Shaobo lobster. Different methods of cooking the lobster have been passed down for many generations.