I spent nigh on three decades wondering what all the fuss was about. I grew up with blue-collar alcoholics, I saw a buttload of drinking in college, and then I entered the working world, which meant a lot of ill-advised shoulder pads, crap happy hours, and drink specials.
Which meant a lot of cheap hooch and well drinks.
I didn't get it. Whiskey sours, sea breezes, white wine spritzers, Cape Cods, gin and tonics, highballs, vodka gimlets, screwdrivers, scotch and soda… I sampled the hell out of them all and found one common thread.
They all sucked gas-station attendant ass.
They tasted of medicine and jet fuel, laced with teeth-bruising sweetness. I didn't get it. I didn't cotton to beer and while I liked the pretentiousness of wine culture and barrel-aged reds, my migraines didn't.
So I stuck to Diet Coke.
Then something miraculous happened. I ordered a Tanqueray and tonic. My taste buds screamed their approval and I never looked back at the nameless bottles behind the bar. I traded up to the literal top-shelf liquors, trying Bombay, Tanqueray 10, Hendricks, Plymouth, Death's Door, and other kinds of fancy-pants gin. I asked a bartender to create a flight of martinis with different vodkas so my girlfriends and I could do a proper taste test. I no longer need to wish at the well because my dreams came true in a delicious green bottle.
What's the worst drink you've ever knocked back?