Feb 5, 2011

How we do in Beijing

If you're a Chinese person from outside of Beijing, aka a waidiren (外地人), you probably drank your baijiu during Lunar New Year like this:

You used a tiny little glass that looks like it was from your daughter's tea party set, you take tiny little sips of liquor, and you make a big show about finally finishing the glass an hour later. "Gan bei! Gan bei! Gan bei!" over and over again.

That's weak. This is why people from Beijing call you guys "南方鸡子" (little southern chickens).

Here's a snapshot from our Lunar New Year's family dinner in Beijing:

Beijing folks will just take a regular old 6 ounce teacup, fill it to the brim with 100 proof baijiu, and suck it down like it was beer during their meal. No repetitive ganbei's or showiness required, just sorghum liquor goodness.

Note that when I say "Beijing folks", I'm not referring to waidiren transplants that just happen to be living in Beijing for work or because they bought a house there and transferred their hukou, I'm talking about people that have been born and bred in Beijing. There is a huge cultural difference, and a large divide in the respective drinking cultures.

Southern Chinese drink huangjiu in tiny glasses and make a big deal about it; Beijingers and northern Chinese nonchalantly suck down giant cups of 100 proof baijiu.


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