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Alex_Hart

风味人间 Once Upon a Bite

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abcdefg

Thanks for the head's up. I haven't noticed it on my local TV station. Will have a look on the internet. 

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Bibu

heard it for months , if it was on air already,  looks like  not as pop as his 1st one. cause no my friends talked about it 

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Alex_Hart
2 hours ago, Bibu said:

heard it for months , if it was on air already,  looks like  not as pop as his 1st one. cause no my friends talked about it 

I do think 舌尖上的中国 was better, but I'm also surprised at how little press 风味人间 received. Maybe it will get more popular as we approach the New Year; A Taste of China seems to be a popular show during 春节. 

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Luxi

All 8 episodes are in YouTube,Can HK still watch? Search for 风味人间. 

I've read comments complaining that it has become too highbrow, too elaborate, too much vegetable sculpting , no longer 人间...but the food still looks delicious.

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abcdefg
9 hours ago, Alex_Hart said:

Maybe it will get more popular as we approach the New Year; A Taste of China seems to be a popular show during 春节. 

 

Maybe. I hope so. But it seems that CCTV has made some programming decisions which relegate 风味人间 to a back shelf. Not sure why. But I have never stumbled across it even once on TV during prime viewing hours, even though reruns from 舌尖上的中国 are shown every day or two even though the episodes are old. (I watch TV the old fashioned way; sitting on my couch looking at the TV screen; not on my #*& mobile phone.)

 

A search of CCTV2 offerings, 财经频道 where most of these food and cooking shows live, tells me that 风味人间 has not shown in the last month. Found a couple of showings in November, but none since. Lack of prime time exposure and the fact that the series only has 8 episodes, makes me wonder whether it might have been abandoned. 

 

I've found it archived on Youtube, as @Luxi suggested. Several Mainland video services also offer it. 

 

Here are some criticisms and discussions of the show. My quick scan of these comments suggest the show is very popular 火 and well liked. Puzzling. I must be missing something. Maybe the CCTV decision makers decided to present this show in Beijing and Shanghai but keep it from the Kunming market. 

 

https://baijiahao.baidu.com/s?id=1616925062436239720&wfr=spider&for=pc 

 

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Bibu

@Alex_Hart   maybe reflected that the media is pure money driven now, buy net clicks and make a pop star...风味人间is by Tencent, they should be very conservative the moment....

 

@luxi thanks, yes there is. wondering how Youtube dealing with copyright of this one. The uploader defiantly not represent Tencent. a search on Douban shows it was once removed by youtube last Nov. :youtube看不到风味人间一二集了?!anyone has an idea on youtube copyright?

 

@abcdefg I believe it could be cost on copyright. Tencent has good enough coverage compared to CCTV. if CCTV do not pay a good money, which they normally do not, Tencent just simply turn down CCTV 's request. 

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abcdefg

That's interesting @Bibu -- I had no idea the show was made by Tencent and that CCTV had to pay them for distribution rights in order to show it on one or another of their TV channels. 

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Bibu

@abcdefg  CCTV used to be the best channels for publishing, so they always offer very low price . It is fair deal , one take the money, the producer take the fame and than get the money else where .

 

Most hot TV series is not on CCTV, that is the reason....

 

FYI, 舌尖上的中国 belongs to CCTV:  《舌尖上的中国》是由陈晓卿执导,中国中央电视台出品的一部美食类纪录片。

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Luxi
8 hours ago, Bibu said:

anyone has an idea on youtube copyright?

 

@Bibuit's very simple, YouTube isn't held accountable for copyright infringements by the channel owners = person/s or organizations who upload the videos. The channel owners are accountable and could be prosecuted but I doubt they ever are. YouTube response to any complaints is to take down the videos and if it is a repeated offence, delete the channel owners' account. Within weeks, someone else (or the same channel owner under a different name) re-uploads the videos in another YouTube channel.

BTW, Tencent have an official YouTube channel, and who knows if they are totally innocent of the leak of some of their videos into some private YouTube channels with advertising.

(sorry about the disgression - please go back to discussing the food program)

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Alex_Hart
23 hours ago, Luxi said:

I've read comments complaining that it has become too highbrow, too elaborate, too much vegetable sculpting , no longer 人间...but the food still looks delicious.

I'm not sure about "vegetable sculpting," but my reason for preferring 舌尖上的中国 was sort of similar.

 

舌尖上的中国 seems to have had a lot more weird ingredients, fermented foods or just things with novel flavors. 风味人间 seems to showcase dishes that might be more familiar to most people (including Chinese people). They do show some fermentation/curing (hams being made in an Anhui village and then comparing it to the method of making a Serrano or Iberico ham), but it feels like less. Since the show is focusing on the interconnections of food between cultures, there are fewer opportunities to showcase "strange" ingredients that might be specific to a certain region of China since this might have no comparable foreign relatives. Crabs from 太湖 or wheat from Shanxi seem to benefit from more attention than hairy tofu or whatnot. 

 

Also, some of the "weirder" ingredients/dishes might have been strange to viewers before 舌尖上的中国, but will be relatively familiar for people who have already seen 舌尖上的中国. For example, scene 1 of episode 1 of Taste of China is a woman going out into the woods to harvest rare wild mushrooms in Yunnan; when I saw this years ago, it was pretty cool and people made a big deal about the "Chinese truffle." In China, it became a hot item with tons of Taobao stores and expensive restaurants selling this mushroom. 风味人间 also shows a man and woman out in the woods hunting for wild mushrooms, this time in Tibet, but it seems to lack that novelty since we already "saw" the Chinese truffle. Same thing with that Anhui ham; I recall there being a salted ham somewhere in 舌尖上的中国, too. This isn't a critique of the show, I still enjoyed the mushrooms and the ham, but it lacked that "oh wow, awesome! I have to jump on a plane to xxx tomorrow!" response; people who have not already seen A Bite of China may like 风味人间 as much as I liked 舌尖上的中国.

 

14 hours ago, Bibu said:

@Alex_Hart   maybe reflected that the media is pure money driven now, buy net clicks and make a pop star...风味人间is by Tencent, they should be very conservative the moment....

 

The 网红s are taking over! 😱 

 

Maybe the lack of attention really is due to how this show fits into the current Chinese media environment. There was a recent story on the TV news about how cafes and restaurants are struggling to survive in Hangzhou because they're hot for a month or two then close once the selfie hordes stop coming. Apparently, many bakeries and restaurants deliberately slow down service to make sure there is a line outside. This makes them seem more popular than they really are, drumming up massive amounts of business by attracting more people who want to try out this new "ramen burger" or who want to take a picture of themselves on line and then realize it isn't that special and don't bother coming back. Or one 网红 takes a photo in a random restaurant and all his/her fans come for a week and then evaporate.

 

I personally think Hangzhou and Shanghai (the centers of this new trend, I guess) are the two most boring culinary destinations in all of China; the food is expensive and all about its high meat to 主食/vegetable ratio. Good reviews on 大众点评 usually correlate with how much meat is on the menu. Chains outnumber mom and pops many times over. "外卖文化" lives alongside "网红文化" (or maybe just "土豪文化!"). I've found far better and more memorable food within a week in Kunming, Chengdu, Guilin, Anhui, Lanzhou or even random villages in Zhejiang than I have in 2 and a half years here in Hangzhou. 

 

When I went to 安徽 2 years ago, there were lines of people waiting to eat the famous 毛豆腐 from a tiny and dirty place run by an auntie who was on 舌尖上的中国. Didn't make a nice photo, but sure was tasty. I also had the 烧豆腐 in Yunnan's Jianshui; again, not pretty but delicious! Perhaps the old uncle on his bike selling 馒头 in 风味人间 might not attract an audience anymore when everyone wants the next 拉花 and 牛排 for their 朋友圈. Or maybe this is what CCTV is thinking. A self-fulfilling prophecy where the network believes the audience has lost interest in these sorts of cultural relics and prefers the modern stuff, and then the audience follows.

 

On the other hand, maybe that's why they have more of @Luxi's "vegetable sculpting" in风味人间; I did see a lot of people discussing the 非洲鸡 from a fancy looking Macau restaurant. I think the 石头饼 looked more interesting, personally. 😂

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Bibu
9 hours ago, Alex_Hart said:

think Hangzhou and Shanghai (the centers of this new trend, I guess) are the two most boring culinary

yup, Beijing and Hong kong got the same trend. Like  Shanghai and Hangzhou used to be a  good place for foodies....

 

I would rather contribute the reason to street food fade away  or the spirit  fade away.  In middle to small towns , even the village , the street food and local daily dish still remains , in its best situation, compared to 20-30 years ago. 

 

When I visit my fiends in remote villages in  Jiangxi and Hunang last year, I had wonderful local dishes. When i travel cross the country,  small villiage or big town, you can always find a place for a dinner, this is impossible 30 years ago.

 

The difference of having a local friend or not , is the quality of food. When I travel by myself and hunting for food, some times good and some times so so, with friend , the food never disappointed me. 

 

My experience is avoiding the mega cities and all tourist spots, go to  3-4 line cities(三四线城市) is the best destination for foodie, or  drop by small village if you have local contacts, anywhere in China, north or south, east or west....

 

Disclaimer:  nothing about expensive  luxury dinner. LOL

 

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abcdefg
4 hours ago, Bibu said:

The difference of having a local friend or not , is the quality of food. When I travel by myself and hunting for food, some times good and some times so so, with friend , the food never disappointed me. 

 

This is so very true! 

 

13 hours ago, Alex_Hart said:

A self-fulfilling prophecy where the network believes the audience has lost interest in these sorts of cultural relics and prefers the modern stuff, and then the audience follows.

 

The food/travel program that is showing here (in Kunming) over and over is one in which a young British chef travels to small towns and villages in Yunnan. It's very well done and definitely explores less popular places and old fashioned flavors. 天涯厨王 is the name of the series. As a bonus, his topical Chinese is fluent, not bookish, and spoken without hesitation. (The kind of language skill I aspire to; not just to "pass HSK 10" or similar.)  

 

Here's a video link: https://search.cctv.com/search.php?qtext=天涯厨王&type=video 

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Alex_Hart
3 hours ago, Bibu said:

I would rather contribute the reason to street food fade away  or the spirit  fade away.  In middle to small towns , even the village , the street food and local daily dish still remains , in its best situation, compared to 20-30 years ago. 

...

My experience is avoiding the mega cities and all tourist spots, go to  3-4 line cities(三四线城市) is the best destination for foodie, or  drop by small village if you have local contacts, anywhere in China, north or south, east or west....

I agree - a lot of old timer Hangzhouers say that the food here got worse after the G20, for example. This is also around the time when people started referring to Hangzhou as a "1.5线城市" (because it wasn't a Shanghai but it seemed richer than its designation as a 2nd tier city). The government waged a war on street food and "dirty" shops in an attempt to clean up the city and make it look more glamorous; this meant no more eating on the sidewalk and a lot more chains (ah, how I hate you 张亮麻辣烫, and you 一点点!). I was rather surprised when I moved to a different 区 this year and found all the same restaurants as my old place(外婆家、新周记、新白鹿、海底捞).

 

But while I haven't had any luck finding good food in Hangzhou itself, neighboring villages and suburbs have amazing dishes. Nearby 安吉 in 湖州 is less than an hour away by car and yet the food is worlds apart: fresh and local ingredients prepared in an often deceptively simple way. Whenever I go, I'm just tempted to order several plates of bamboo shoots (the local specialty), which the locals will prepare a dozen different ways to emphasize some different aspect of the bamboo. In my girlfriend's hometown in 衢州, the same thing can be found. Lots of aunties with a fridge full of ingredients and you point to an item and they cook it expertly. Both cities are cheap. No 外卖 to speak of. Heaven!

 

3 hours ago, abcdefg said:

The food show that is showing here (in Kunming) over and over is one in which a young British chef travels to small towns and villages in Yunnan. It's very well done and definitely explores less popular places and old fashioned flavors. 天涯厨王 is the name of the series. As a bonus, his topical Chinese is fluent, not bookish, and spoken without hesitation. (The kind of language skill I aspire to; not "pass HSK 10" or similar.)  

 

Thanks for the suggestion! This show is popular here, too; seems to be on a lot. I enjoyed it, but only caught random episodes when they aired on TV. Maybe I'll need to go back and watch it from episode 1.

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abcdefg
6 minutes ago, Alex_Hart said:

Nearby 安吉 in 湖州 is less than an hour away by car and yet the food is worlds apart: fresh and local ingredients prepared in an often deceptively simple way.

 

Agree with that for sure! I went to Anji 安吉 for their famous tea, and got swept away by their skill in preparing bamboo. Had it stewed in big chunks one day for lunch, slices of it stir-fried for supper a few hours later, and the next day had it a couple of other completely different ways. Never bland or boring. Each meal was accompanied by unpretentious "bottomless" glasses of hot fresh 安吉白茶. You just bought a small handful of tea leaves at the start, and the waitress kept coming by to replenish your glass from her thermos of hot water. It was spring and mid-harvest. Glorious place! 

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Bibu
4 hours ago, abcdefg said:

You just bought a small handful of tea leaves at the start, and the waitress kept coming by to replenish your glass

tea is a big topic as dishes.

 

You had to buy a small handful, while the old tradition is free offer, 长亭外, 古道边(song 送别),  every village has several 长亭 In its edge, and free tea offered in the 长亭.

 

Months ago i saw a piece of  news about Indonesia , maybe  Malysia , that one of the local oversea Chinese offers free tea for her lifetime on the street, no surprise, she keeps the tradition...

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Alex_Hart
7 hours ago, abcdefg said:

Agree with that for sure! I went to Anji 安吉 for their famous tea, and got swept away by their skill in preparing bamboo. Had it stewed in big chunks one day for lunch, slices of it stir-fried for supper a few hours later, and the next day had it a couple of other completely different ways. Never bland or boring. Each meal was accompanied by unpretentious "bottomless" glasses of hot fresh 安吉白茶. You just bought a small handful of tea leaves at the start, and the waitress kept coming by to replenish your glass from her thermos of hot water. It was spring and mid-harvest. Glorious place! 

Agreed - I went for the 白茶,stayed for the bamboo, went back for the hiking! We went around the same time as you the first time, and we went back again in summer. I should get out there during winter, heard their winter bamboo is also great. I came home with a huge bag of smoked bamboo shoots, large bag of dried bamboo and some 安吉白茶. 

 

Not sure if you did any hiking while there, but I bought some 安吉白茶 from an elderly man sitting on top of a mountain. He and his friends were hanging out smoking cigarettes, drinking tea and playing poker. He had a small sign that advertised three grades of 安吉白茶 to be bought by the cup. I wouldn't usually buy tea from him, but the mountaintop/hilltop had a beautiful view of the surrounding bamboo forest so I gave in and asked how much for a cup of tea and a slice of watermelon. Sat up there for an hour or two refilling my cup.

 

2 hours ago, Bibu said:

You had to buy a small handful, while the old tradition is free offer, 长亭外, 古道边(song 送别),  every village has several 长亭 In its edge, and free tea offered in the 长亭.

 

You still get the free tea in some smaller places. My girlfriend's hometown is far, far off the tourist path and most restaurants there will bring you a plastic cup of tea leaves and the giant plastic jug of hot water. The place I went to in Anji also brought us a big teapot. Probably wasn't as good as @abcdefg's as they did have some tea on the menu if you wanted to actually pay for it. 

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Bibu
1 hour ago, Alex_Hart said:

most restaurants there will bring you a plastic cup

not in restaurant. 长亭 is   by the road, a place to see friends and families departing, and also served for pass by people to have a rest . Free tea is served here by volunteer. Normally it is a big jar with some cups. 1 Jar of tea would serve the day.

A more ancient tradition is drink to your friends who is leaving @长亭. There is so many classic poems talk about see friends leaving and drink at the site, in most cases, it happens default @长亭

 

May I know What is bamboo shoots in Chinese? just can not figure out. BTW, the winter bamboo is the best of breed...

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abcdefg
18 minutes ago, Bibu said:

May I know What is bamboo shoots in Chinese? just can not figure out. BTW, the winter bamboo is the best of breed...

 

竹笋

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