Chinese coffee chain makes millions on baijiu-infused latte
Luckin Coffee sold 100 million yuan (£10.891 million) worth of coffees laced with baijiu brand Kweichow Moutai in a single day last week.
The coffee chain, which has 10,000 stores across China, including many in Beijing and Shanghai, partnered with alcoholic beverage giant Kweichow Moutai to create a latte infused with the baijiu.
According to the coffee company, the first day of the item’s launch saw 5.42 million cups of the boozy coffee sold.
However, those expecting to get a buzz from the drink may have been disappointed as the alcohol content of the coffee was less than 0.5% ABV. Despite this, sales staff recommended that consumers did not drive after drinking the product.
The company also suggests that teenagers and pregnant women should refrain from drinking the latte, which comes topped with whipped cream.
Named the ‘Sauce-flavoured Latte’ due to the savoury notes found in Kweichow Moutai, which some people liken to soy sauce, has gone viral on social media. As a result, the companies have said that the limited-edition coffee may now become a permanent fixture on the menu.
Luxury baijiu producer Kweichow Moutai, whose product retails for an average of 1,499 yuan (£163), has been looking for ways to make itself more accessible to a new generation of drinkers. Last year, the company, based in China’s southwestern Guizhou province, launched a baijiu-infused ice cream.
Kweichow Moutai is considered by many in China and internationally as an investment commodity. In 2021, Sotheby’s London sold 24 bottles of Kweichow Moutai ‘Sun Flower’ 1974 for £1 million – the highest price achieved at auction for a single lot of Moutai outside of China.
Luckin Coffee bounced back after an accounting fraud scandal in 2020 brought it to the brink of collapse, and forced it to withdraw from the Nasdaq exchange, the most active stock trading venue in the US by volume. Luckin has been busy expanding its extensive store portfolio in China since.