Staff Top 10
Top Ten Alcoholic Beverages

; Guinness.

Thick, creamy and satisfying like a boozey Irishmilkshake, more calories than a roasted swine, and you can draw on top of it. Allegedly you can survive comfortably on a diet consisting purely of Guinness, oranges and pork scratchings. I keep meaning to try it out.

2; San Miguel.

Smooth, clean and pure like a virgin’s thigh, this is the real King Of Beers. Plus the Spaniards call beer cerveza, which is a great name. Serve ice cold(preferably on the verge of being frozen).

3; Rioja.

Them Spanish, eh? They don’t just know how to make lager and paella, they know how to grow grapes and tread them into gorgeous, fruity, oaky reds too. My particular favourite vineyard is Campo Veijo (the 1995 vintage was particularly spectacular, but now rather hard to come by), but any rioja will do at a push. Mmm...

4; Newcastle Brown Ale.

Nicknamed ‘dog’ by the indigenous peoples of Geordieland. Gorgeous. Drink from a half-filled half-pint glass, topping-up at regular intervals. Serve cold.

5; Aussie Shiraz.

Whether it’s a straight Shiraz or blended with a nice Cabernet, you’re always onto a good ‘un with an Aussie one. Those South Eastern vineyards seem to be particularly excellent. Drink with cheese. Num num.

6; Gale’s HSB.

Or ‘Heavy Special Bitter’. Looks like drinking chocolate. Tastes like malted socks. Gorgeous. 6% alcohol by volume, or something silly like that. Never have more than two.

7; Sharp’s Doombar.

Cornish Real Ale. Gorgeous. Starts clinging to your teeth after three pints. Tastes stronger than it is. Merciless morning-after headache.

8; John Smiths Smooth.

Too cold, too bland, too commercial, too easy an option when faced with scarily named local beers like “Headhunter” and “Witch’s Tit”. But, you can drink a couple of gallons of it with little effect if you know what you’re doing. I most definitely don’t, though.

9; Port.

Old man’s snifter. Favoured tipple of decadent alkies and ex-army types. Basically just red wine fortified with brandy – whack another brandy in it and Hey Presto! A cure for the common cold.

10; Absinthe.

Somewhere between meths and mouthwash. Makes you do weird things. Needs imbibing with sugar and fire and water and other such nonsense. 70% by volume. Sends you mad. Favoured by 19th century French poets. I drank it twice. It got messy.

By: Nick Southall
Published on: 2002-09-09
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