Spiritual Enlightenment

Herein lies a small guide to a variety of alcoholic beverages. The reviews given herein are not at all meant as slurs towards the respected companies who produce the drinks in question - merely I am slurring the drinks themselves. If you really think that I've drunk everything that I've mentioned here, then that's your choice. Personally, I believe that I haven't, but there you go. Without further ado, then, have a look through the handily sorted list below:

Absolut: A vodka from Sweden that also comes in the extra flavours of: Absolut Citron (smells of lemon, but doesn't taste all that strong), Absolut Kurant (smells of blackcurrant, but doesn't taste all that strong), and Absolut Pepar (smells of Jalapeño green chilli peppers, and tastes nicely strong and is muchly good). These all look clear and come in similar bottles. However, as vodkas go, Absolut ain't that good.

Advocaat: Thick, gloopy, yellow, and with a hint of raw egg to it, Advocaat is the work of devil. Please don't drink it, as it is quite quite hurl-inducing. On it's own, that is. With lemonade and stuff, it's surprisingly palatable.

Ale: Ye olde beer.

Amaretto: A liqueury type drink that tastes of almonds. It's great, I suppose, but you could be ill if you sat there all night drinking a bottle of it. It's clear in colour, and smells just lovely! The taste, however, is slightly sharper - that'll be the alcohol, then.

Ambrosia: The classical drink of the Gods. Not to be confused with the rice pudding.

Amer Picon: A popular French bitter or aperitif cordial. Also served to sweeten with a little grenadine or cassis.

Aperitif: Drinks that are frequently served alone, without other ingredients.

Appletise: A non-alcoholic fizzy apple-flavoured drink, that if left with the top off starts to ferment. Tasty.

Aqua Regia: A mixture of concentrated nitric acid and concentrated sulphuric acid. Melts gold. Not very smooth.

Archers: A peach schnapps.

Ayahuasco: A poison made by the native tribespeople of the South American Amazon basin. Couldn't describe it for you, but the effects are apparently quite groovy in small doses; fatal in larger.

Bacardi: This is a rum and therefore tastes foul. By definition. It is clear (it's only redeeming feature), smells foul, and tastes foul. Nasty, nasty stuff.

Bacardi Breezer: Amazingly, Bacardi tastes great in these handy bottles of fruity delight. They come in five flavours: watermelon, lime, orange, peach, and pineapple. They taste quite watery though. My favourite is the watermelon, not the lime as you might expect from me.

Bacardi Spice: Like Bacardi, but not clear. Tastes a touch more spicy. Also nasty, nasty stuff. It had a good advertising campaign, though - I've got a lovely Bacardi Spice poster in my room.

Baileys: Smoothness incarnate, and muchly tasty. Baileys is just great. It's an Irish cream liqueur made out of whiskey and cream - which is why it has a sell by date. If you want, it goes very well with grenadine, but never ever ever mix it with lime.

Beer: Sorry, couldn't tell you the difference between them. The way I see it, beers are a funny colour and don't taste nice. And you get lots of it at a time. If you want to drink something horrible, why prolong the agony? Note how similar it is going in your body and coming out? Hmmm.

Blackcurrant: A cordial. Fruit based. Oddly enough, blackcurrant based; but I forget which e-number that is. A very good mixer, I reckon.

Black Heart: A dark rum. Oooh... Yuk! Quite quite horrible. I was told by a barmaid that quite a few people drink it - and come back for more. Fools, the lot of 'em.

Black Sambuca: It's like Sambuca only it's black, and tastes a bit more like liquorice rather than aniseed. Yummy!

Blue Bols: A bad joke oft favoured by pub landlords (Punter: "Do you have Blue Bols?" Barman: "Yes, but the doctor's given me pills for it.") As to the drink itself, it's BLUE! It smells really nice, and has a pleasant taste - somewhat like mouthwash, only more expensive. I liked it. And, it's BLUE!

Bottle: It's a bottle, y'know? Quite often drinks are stored in them. They're made of glass. I can see I'm going to have problems with you, aren't I?

Brandy: Golden brown in colour, rough as emery boards, and doesn't taste all that nice. Common uses for this drink include removing paint, and varnishing wood.

Byrrh: Not to be confused with beer, this is a French tonic or aperitif wine. Its basis is red wine from the South of France or Spain, fortified with brandy. Its informing flavour is that of quinine, a drug used to combat (amongst other things) malaria.

Cadbury's Cream Liqueur: A deadly liqueur in that it tastes exactly like Cadbury's milk chocolate. If it were cheaper, I could see myself partaking of this quite often.

Calcutta Headbanger: A drink that unfortunately doesn't exist, but if it did, I'm sure it would have an interesting taste, be green-brown in colour, and knock you unconscious within three minutes.

Caralans: A whisky of some kind, I think. It looks like Baileys, but smells like Baileys and cheese. Not a fresh smelling cheese, either. The taste is not unpleasant - kinda like Baileys, but with something else in there...

Cat's Pee on a Gooseberry Bush: I'm not making this up - there really is a New Zealand wine called Cat's Pee on a Gooseberry Bush. Funnily enough, it looks like cat's pee on a gooseberry bush. In fact, it also smells like cat's pee on a gooseberry bush and tastes like cat's pee on a gooseberry bush. I believe that this drink is in reality cat's pee on a gooseberry bush, and nothing more. Avoid like genital warts.

Chambery: Allegedly one of the best and driest vermouths from the district of Chambery in French Savoy.

Chatreuse: Yellow or green, chatreuse tastes a touch odd, but is bearable. In the long term it could have a serious affect on your stomach, though. Ultimately, I think it has a reputation that is worse than the drink. The flavour is very reminiscent of herbs, actually.

Chemical Sludge: A cocktail containing blue bols, grenadine, and milk. The resulting reaction occassionally causes a solid precipitate to form. Still drinkable, and actually very nice, but it has a peculiar texture. And it's a gorgeous violet colour.

Cider: Appley beer.

Closed Coffin: This cocktail contains peach schnapps, blue bols, and orange juice. The drink is yellow, and it tastes quite nice.

Cola: An extremely dodgy substance that I recommend you avoid like a gimp with leprosy. Have you seen what is does to teeth? Nasty. Vile. Popular with the youngsters.

Cordial: Fruit based groovy mixers, king of which is lime. Blackcurrant is another good one.

Crabbies: A pish green ginger wine.

Craw Daddy: A Southern Comfort mixed drink that tastes the colour of the bottle - sort of a semi-dark blue colour. Kinda pleasing, somehow.

Crème de Banane: Yellowy and smells a bit of bananas. However, I found that it didn't really taste of the fruit. I found that a touch odd, myself. This is hardly ever drunk straight, and is mostly used as mixers in odd cocktails.

Crème de Cassis: This one's sort of purple or red, depending on how dodgy it is. Tastes a bit off, as well. Possibly it was past its drink by date when I tried it. I'd say you should leave it as a mixer.

Crème de Menthe: Bright green stuff that tastes just lovely! It's minty and smells wonderful. This stuff's great - try it now! Don't leave yourself logged onto the computer, though.

Curacao: This comes in different flavours, and is the equivalent of Bols. To illustrate, Curacao Bleu is the same as blue bols.

Cypriot Brandy: Rather unlike any other brandy, I've been told, but I wouldn't know. This brandy isn't pleasant to drink, and I wouldn't extole any virtues that it may possess, since I couldn't find any.

Drambuie: A whisky liqueur that is sweet to taste and pleasing to the palate. Rather unlike a whisky, then.

Dubonnet: One of the many widely popular French aperitifs. Its basis is red wine and the colour dark red. A point of interest: its advertising catchphrase used to be, "Dubonnet does not affect the liver." Hardly worth drinking then.

Egg Nog: A traditional tipple that is as smooth as industrial lubricant but not quite so tasty. Or so I've been led to believe. Meant to be good for a hangover?

Famous Grouse: A whisky. If you need me to say more, then at one point in your life try a whisky. Not all that good, eh?

FBI: Frozen Black Irish. It's not frozen, it's not black, and it's only partly Irish. A cocktail containing Baileys, Kahlua, Vodka, and a couple of scoops of vanilla ice cream. Gorgeous.

Flaming Lamborghini: This involves five drinks, three glasses, a straw, and a match. And you have to down it. When I can remember the pertinent details I'll note them down right about here. As I recall, it involves, certainly, Sambuca and Baileys.

Fortified Wine: Wine that's had more alcohol put in it. For people who like wine and want to get drunk, I'd reason.

Frangelico: Very similar to Amaretto but instead of being made with almonds, it's made with hazlenuts. Not sharp at all. Lurvely.

Galliano: This Italian liqueur comes in lovely long tall bottles that look good about the house. As to the drink itself, it's sort of yellowy, and a bit burny in texture, but it actually tastes quite nice.

Glass: It's a glass! What do you want me to say! You put drinks in it and it's made of glass! A glass, I tell you! Don't you even know what a glass is? Gods! Some people!

Goldwasser: It's a kind of vodka, but with bits of real gold leaf floating in it. Drunk by people to show that they care about neither their money nor their liver.

Green Ginger Wine: Pish! This stuff isn't green, but it kinda tastes of wine that's got lots of ginger in it. It smells pish, though. It has a sharp ginger aftertaste, too. It's pish. It is, however, really cheap, but it's utter pish.

Green Monster: A pint glass with a bit of everything from behind the bar (I leave it to you to imagine what 'everything' can include). If someone gives you one of these, that person doesn't like you. It's bound to be a real vomit inducer.

Grenadine: Red. Tastes fruity. Really nice, actually. Tip for Goths: if you get it right, it can temporarily stain your teeth a lovely red colour. It also goes well with lime, or with Crème de Menthe.

Guiness: Black stuff that takes ages to settle and doesn't, in my opinion, taste nice. Is it really worth the bother, I ask you?

Hair of dog: The belief, put about by hardened drinkers, that drinking more alcohol cures a hangover. What they don't explain is what happens when the booster drink wears off.

Hangover: Having never had one, I can't explain the full horror of the situation, but drink too much and it hurts the next morning, as far as I can tell.

Hooch: It's meant to taste of lemonade, but I can definitely taste alcohol in there, which makes it taste kinda worse. Popular with the kiddies. Of course, now they've got it in lots of flavours. Joy. Do you think it's at all suspect that HOOCH is the chemical formula for methanoic acid?

Ice: A common enough substance, made from water. Ice is found in clear solid lumps and is used to cool down drinks; to crunch at your friends; to play "pass the icecube" with. Great fun.

Inn: Ye olde pub.

José Cuervo: The infamous tequila.

Kahlua: Pronounced "ka-LOO-a". A coffee liqueur that looks, smells, and tastes like coffee. Good if you like coffee. Which I don't. But even if you don't, you can still live with it. Quite surprising, really.

Kampai: This drink uses an unusual font, such that when you see the bottle, you are convinced it is called Xampai. Anyhow, it tastes a bit like Appletise, only with more spicey bits in it. And alcohol. I think that its name may come from the traditional Chinese version of cheers? [Anyone who knows: comments to the usual]

Lager: Weak fizzy beer.

Lillet: Another popular French aperitif with a basis of white wine.

Lime: The perfect mixer. Not only is it green, not only does it taste of lime, but it also goes well with almost any drink you add it to! [Note to self: remember not to mix with Baileys again.] It's groovy stuff is lime cordial.

Liqueur: The term generally given to miscellanious spirits that have got funny colours and stranger tastes. At least, that's what it seems like to me.

Malibu: A nice tasting coconut-based spirit, that comes in pleant white bottles. Malibu is really rather nice. And yes, it tastes of coconuts.

Martinell: This is a brandy, and so is not to be recommended to anyone with taste buds. I advise you all to stear clear.

Metz: Tastes peculiarly nice, and looks nicely peculiar. Not my style, though. It has a taste of lemonade to it.

Midouri: The colour of melons, smells of melons, tastes of melons. Oddly, though, Midouri is actually made of melons. It's quite nice, too, and is a lovely green colour.

Milk: Cow juice, made from freshly squeezed cows. This is white and comes in varying strengths from the nigh-on water type, to the thick and drink-it-with-a-spoon type. Contains no alcohol, but is used as a mixer more frequently that the average man would think. Curious, eh? I prefer it straight, though.

Mirage: Even though it had a good advertising campaign, it tastes quite foul. I reckon that it's quite a bit like green ginger wine, without the redeeming quality of being dirt cheap. The company also refuse to say what's in it. Better the evil you know..?

Morgans Spiced: It's a rum. If you don't appreciate quite how foul that makes it, try some. Happy now? And don't speak whilst you're throwing up.

Moscow Mule: A vodka based drink with flavourings, including ginger and lime. It tastes like ginger beer with a sharpy, more alcoholic taste to it, and looks pretty similar too. It's nice, is a Moscow Mule.

MSO: Multiple Screaming Orgasm. This is an FBI with amaretto. Personally, I prefer the FBI, but this is still really good.

Nectar: A few million billion insects can't be wrong, can they? A bit hard to get hold of, though, I'm sure, in sufficient quantities.

Noilly Pratt: Pratt is a sixteenth century English word meaning buttocks. And the aperitif tastes of wine. Not my thing at all.

Orange: It's orange in colour, and orange in taste, and is made of artificial colours, flavour enhancers, and preservatives. A handy mixer that is generally a safe bet.

Orange Juice: Pressed and squeezed from live oranges. Mmm-mmm. Gorgeous fresh, vile when past its date. NEVER mix with dairy drinks, like milk or Baileys.

Ouzo: Clear stuff that goes gray if you add anything to it. It tastes of aniseed, but is made with distilled grape must. I like it, but then I would, being Greek. It could be described as an aquired taste, I suppose.

OVD: OVD (Old Vatted Demerara) is a demerara rum; but since it is a rum, it is foul. Of all the rums I know, this is the least foul. It's a dark brown colour - somewhat off putting.

Passoa: "The Passion Drink." A delicious blend of fruit juices and alcohol. Goes very well indeed with orange juice.

Peach Schnapps: Tastes really good, I reckon. Tastes of peaches, funnily enough. Wonder why..? Oh yeah - it goes very well with lime as well.

Pernod: It seems to me that Pernod is like coloured Ouzo. When you add something to it, it goes green instead of grey, and that's about it. The taste is slightly worse than that of Ouzo, and is based on aniseed. It used to be made with absinthe, but that got banned in its native France, and the aperitif has probably suffered for it.

Pint: Generally a pint contains stuff like beer. If it contains spirits, then you'd better have a bucket handy. A common phrase heard in places I frequent is, "Are you calling my pint a poofter?" Indeed.

Pisang Ambon: A humorously named green Indonesian liqueur that tastes great with fruit salads and ice cream. Mmm-mmm.

Plonk: A term used to describe cheap wine that gets you drunk for very little cash.

Pub: A quaint English term stemming from the time that drinking establishments were called Public Houses. Otherwise known as a piss-up parlour.

Red: "Contains Caffeine, Guarana and Damiana. These natural extracts are used for their revitalising and stimulating properties among the Brazilian tribes." Yup, it's alcoholic Red Bull.

Retsina: A Greek wine made from tree resin. Given to gullible tourists, and also drunk by Greeks with no taste buds left [see Ouzo]. Quite, quite vile.

Safari: Fruit stuff mixed together into little bottles. It's okay, I suppose. Nothing wrong with it at all.

Rum: It comes in two flavours; light and dark. The light side is particularly nasty, but never underestimate the dark side of the rum. Examples include Bacardi, OVD, and Black Heart.

St. Raphael: An apparently well-known French aperitif with a base of white wine. It has an aftertaste of quinine, that popular anti-malaria drug.

Saki: Smells like white rum, I think, but tastes much nicer. It's got a strange taste, almost light, but I believe it gets the seal of approval.

Sambuca: Kinda like Ouzo, only the name's harder to pronounce. And spell, for that matter. The main difference is that Sambuca is a liqueur whereas Ouzo is not.

Satan's piss fermented in a rusty water-butt...: Yeeees.

Shot: A measure of spirits. 25ml. Sometimes 35ml. Do you really need me to say more?

Sloe Death: A cocktail containing sloe gin, Crème de Banane, Bacardi Spice, and pineapple. Tastes surprisingly bland.

Sourz: A green apple-flavoured drink that tastes very nice indeed.

Southern Comfort: Try putting some of this on your tongue and inhaling over it. Are your sinuses clear yet? Good. Southern Comfort's okay - you might need to get used to it, though. It mixes well with other drinks; for example with lemonade and lime.

Stout: Concentrated beer.

Strega: A liqueur that is quite similar to green Chatreuse. Spicy and herby, and a touch peculiar.

Tankard: A metal thing used to hold drinks so strong that they digest glass, or so nauseous that you don't want to be able to see what you are drinking.

Teacher's: Another damnèd whisky!

Tequila: Smells very bad, such that you don't want to drink it; and when (if?) you do you'll maybe wish you didn't. There is a small ritual involving salt and lemons, but this is just to hide that nasty flavour. No, that's wrong: tequila doesn't have a flavour. But it does have a taste. Oh yes. Goat Boy says that where he comes from, tequilla is known as Vitamin T. <grin>

Tequila Gold: Tequila that's got a golden glow to it. Like urine does.

Tia Maria: I thought Tia Maria was meant to taste like coffee, but really it's much more chocolatey. It looks orangey-brown - you know that colour, I'm sure - and it tastes quite nice. Go for it. The name means 'Aunt Mary'.

Tsipouro: It's a liqueur form (sort of) of Ouzo, but it's more refined, more expensive, and more potent. If you're wary of Ouzo, run from Tsipouro.

Two Dogs: Just like Hooch, I guess.

Vladi Long: Made with Vladivar Vodka, lemonade, lime, and a hint of bitters. Quite tasty, and a nice blue bottle. Good ad campaign when it first came out as well.

Vladivar: One of a multitude of vodka brands.

Vodka: The archetypal spirit. Clear, colourless, and alcholic. Mixes well with all sorts of things and is found in countless cocktails. Straight, though, it's okay but not liked by everybody. There are loads of different strengths and brands, but you can categorise them easily: cheap and gets you pissed, or expensive and gets you pissed.

Votch: Vodka and lime - a good combination.

Water: I like water, okay? It tastes good, it's kinda cheap, and you can drink loads of it without getting ill. Can also be used to dilute cordials. And, of course, it's essential for the human body - what more could you ask for in a drink?

Whiskey: Irish or American for whisky. For example you will find Irish whiskey and Bourbon whiskey, but Scotch whisky and rye whisky.

Whisky: Coming from the Gaelic word whisky, meaning 'whisky', whisky has a strong tradition amongst the Celts. And they're absolute nutters. Says a lot for the drink, doesn't it? [Okay, okay! For the purists, 'whisky' is a corruption of 'usquebaugh' which in turn comes from the Gaelic 'uisge beatha' meaning 'water of life'. Are you happy? Can I go now?]

Wine: Not my tipple at all. Not liking the taste of it, I've stayed away, and so can't offer any words of wisdom on the bucketloads of wines out there in the world, or the drinks that are wine-based. Sorry.

Witch: Ouzo and lime - even better than a votch.

Wolfschmidt: This is a drink that is made in England to a Dutch recipe and has a German name. If that doesn't qualify it to be mixed up, I'm not sure what does. It certainly has an interesting flavour to it. However, do take note that it is immiscible with water.

Woody's: It's pink, it's fizzy, and it's alcoholic. Pink grapefruit juice with alcohol in. Not too bad really, but men shouldn't be seen drinking it in public; it's pink for crying out loud!

Xampai: [See Kampai]

Yard: A glass drinks holder that's a yard long (that's three feet) that holds two and a half pints. Traditionally used by rugby players and tossers. You don't drink spirits in one.

Zafra: Made under the Bacardi label, this drink has (thankfully) nothing to do with rum. It is actually a cane spirit. I guess this means it's distilled from sugar cane. It's got a neutral colour and tastes good. Nothing wrong with it.

And if you'd like to know what other fun tings you can do with these alcie bevvies, why don't you try mixing them. Heh heh heh.

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