I'm ashamed of my ignorance on this one, but it's undeniable.
When I drink something with alcohol at a Chinese restaurant, I have beer. But is that traditional? I've read about Chinese liquor (Maotai was the brand given as an example), yellow wine, and fruit wine on a website, but it was unclear to me whether these are typically eaten with food or just, well, to get hammered. Or rather to have a convivial social experience. Or maybe for ceremonial purposes, or while watching sports or something.
I also found stuff about pairing western wines with Chinese food, but that's not what I'm interested in. I'm also not interested in what the Chinese may be doing now as a result of Western influence, whether it's cabernet with Coke (as reported on one site) or anything else. What I'd lik to know is what beverage containing alcohol the average Chinese person would drink with a meal say 200 years ago. Maybe none. Maybe just tea.
I'm also curious what this Chinese liquor is like, and where I might be able to get some in the NYC area, if anyone knows.
Perhaps this has been addressed before on the site, but I did some searches and didn't find anything relevant. Sorry if this is repetitive, but in any event, to those who respond with info, thanks in advance for bringing me out of my benighted state.