What Your Drink Says About You

During the day, you’re a minivan-driving, soccer game-refereeing, steak pre-cutting, hair-detangling, Wiggles-listening, Wubzy-watching, spit-up-wearing, school lunch-preparing, diaper genie-cursing, mac-and-cheese-making shell of your former self. After the kids go to bed, though, when it’s time to relax on the couch with a box of Mallomars, and watch some 30 Rock on DVR…who are you, exactly? Sometimes it’s hard to remember. Herewith, a brief attempt to parse it out, based on your chosen mode of self-medication.

Can of inexpensive, retro-y beer (such as PBR, Schaefer, Bud, etc.)
How to make it: Hit up any 7-11 outside of the wealthy enclaves of the Northeast, and hand over four bucks for six col’beers. Or go to any bar on the Lower East Side of Manhattan where facial hair and APC jeans are in abundance.
What it says about you (unironic version): I can pound this s@!t fer days, son!
What it says about you (ironic version): Yes, actually, I am the bassist in LCD Soundsystem.
Crunk Factor: Low and slow.

Gin and Tonic
How to make it: 1 part gin, 2 parts tonic water (if you feel like splurging, this stuff — which you can find at Whole Foods — is real good). Garnish with a wedge of lime (no lemon!). Serve in tall glass, over plenty of ice.
What it says about you: I am civilized. Also somewhat risk averse, politically moderate, and did I tell you I went to college in New Haven?
Crunk factor: Moderate to high.

The Vodka Soda
How to make it: 2 oz vodka, topped with soda water. Garnish with wedge of lime. Serve in tall glass over ice.
What it says about you: Whoa, check this out: I think I’ve found a way to get drunk without really having to taste the alcohol.
Crunk factor: Sneaky high.

Sloe Gin Fizz
How to make it: We don’t own a cocktail shaker, but if you have one, you can put it to use here. Mix 2 oz sloe gin, juice of half a lemon, and a teaspoon of fine sugar, until sugar is dissolved. If shaken with ice, serve up. If stirred, serve over ice. Top with soda water.
What it says about you (female version): I am woman, hear me roar!
What it says about you (male version): I am woman, hear me roar!
Crunk factor: Wait, is there alcohol in this?

The Manhattan
How to make it: Try the DALS recipe.
What it says about you: No, I drink this in the summer, too. I hate “summer drinks.” I hate summer. And humidity. Also unicorns and rainbows. And puppies.
Crunk factor: What did I say last night? Was it bad?

The Mojito
How to make it: In tall glass, stir juice from one lime, and 2 tsp of fine sugar until sugar is completely dissolved. Add plenty of crushed ice. Mash up, in your hands — or with a muddler or mortar and pestle — about 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, and add to glass.  Add 2 oz white rum, and top with soda water. Garnish with mint sprigs.
What it says about you: I still call my computer a Macintosh, I gargle with balsamic vinegar, and, god, how great is Paul Reiser in Mad About You? Best show EVER.
Crunk factor: Medium high.

The Greyhound
How to make it: Juice from one ruby red grapefruit, 2 oz gin. Garnish with thin wheel of lime or sprig of mint. Serve in short glass, over ice.
What it says about you: I dare to be different, but not so different that my friends at bridge club won’t know what I’m asking for. Also, my name is Angela Lansbury.
Crunk factor: Nothing to sneeze at, but unlikely to get you kicked out of the retirement home.

Rum and Coke
How to make it: 1 part dark rum, 2 parts Coke, 1 wedge lime. Serve over ice, in tall glass.
What it says about you, part 1: I am known, around the house, as “Mr. Dessert.”
What it says about you, part 2: Hey, bro, you were totally, totally right: this Senor Frog’s place is frickin’ awesome. And dude, stop WORRYING about it so much, okay? You’re bummin’ me out. I told my mom I was sleeping over at your house tonight. Pass the ecstasy!
Crunk factor: Dangerous, given that it tastes like candy.

Dark n’ Stormy
How to make it: Try the DALS recipe.
What it says about you: I take my drinking very seriously, will travel thirty miles out of my way just to find Barritt’s Ginger Beer, and know my port from my starboard. Also, this tastes so, so good. Seriously, I don’t ever want this to end.
Crunk factor: Moderate.

Aperol Spritz
How to make it: 2 parts Proseco or Champagne, 1 part Aperol, splash of soda water. Serve over ice in a low glass. Garnish with an orange slice.
What it says about you: I am somewhat obscure, possibly dark, and dream of writing vast, impenetrable novels that appeal to no one outside of Brooklyn, New York.
Crunk factor: Low.

Strawberry Daiquiri
How to make it: In a blender, mix 1 cup ice, 4 oz white rum, 4 tsp sugar, one cup fresh strawberries, juice from half of a lime. Garnish with mint.
What it says about you: OMG, I am soooooo wasted. I can’t feel my lips!
Crunk factor: High enough.

Pimm’s Cup
How to make it: 1 part Pimm’s, 2 parts lemonade. Stir. Serve in tall glass, over ice, and top with soda water. Garnish with a cucumber slice or lemon wedge.
What it says about you: No, I’m not technically British. My parents are from the nice part of Cincinnati. But my grandfather is half Scottish. Whatever. Have you ever READ Graham Greene?
Crunk factor: Low.

How to make it: 1 oz gin, 1 oz sweet vermouth (this stuff is tasty), 1 oz Campari. Garnish with orange slice.
What it says about you: Yes, my pants are red. You are not imagining that. I bought them last summer, when I was on my yearly trip to Rome with the family my wife doesn’t know about. Salute!
Crunk factor: How do you say in Italian? Grandissimo?

Negroni photo from Serious Eats.

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Perfect post post for a Friday afternoon of a long week of work!
So many inspiring cocktails to try as a Friday afternoon drink to kick off a weekend of relaxation….


I fell in love with Aperol Spritz a couple of years ago on a trip to Venice. An alternate version is white wine, Aperol, and soda water served straight up in a wine glass. You can garnish it the way that they do in Venice with a green Cerignola olive on a skewer. It’s my ideal summer drink.


Due to the fact that it contains grapefruit juice, the Greyhound also says ‘I’m not currently taking any allergy medications or SSRIs.’


Awesome awesome post. I’m new here, and definitely a mix between a Manhattan and a Greyhound… thanks for helping me define myself 🙂


This is hilarious. Im a gin and tonic girl but I “went to school in Williamstown.”


very nice piece of writing, but sorry, our whole family drinks gin and tonics in the summer and and has for generations and we are politically uber-conservative. we have presbyterian pastors, policy advisors for republican governors (my dh) and people that vote for Ron Paul.

also, what about wine drinkers?


I loved this! I made my husband listen to me read all my favorites out loud because it cracked me up. He is a gin and tonic guy, and didn’t go to school in New Haven, but works there now!


Mu husband and I laughed so hard reading this. We are into gin and tonics but are midwesterns to the soul – schools and all. Thanks for the laughs!!


No vodka martini????
Easy to make, skip the vermouth, but add extra olives!!! Not sure what it says about me…but I love drinking them!


what does it mean if i really DID go to college in new haven, but cannot abide the taste of gin in any form?


It’s 5:49 and no end to the work day in sight, but I am now thirsty and have a hankering (yup I said hankering, that’s the kind of day it is) for sitting outside with at least 7 out of the above. I’m usually a beer lady myself, but I’m trying to be more of an adult about my drinking…I think it’s about time I give this dark n’ stormy recipe a try.


This had me cracking up and pining for five o’clock. Thank god it’s Friday. Oh, Matlock’s on–gotta run!


I’m a huge Negroni (and Campari) fan… I was going to suggest this sweet & bitter nectar-of-the-gods in the comments until I saw it down at the bottom. Well done!


Wow! Three days ago, my husband made this my homepage. Another convert to add to your list!
“Amazingly inspiring”, written drink in hand…. : )


Can’t wait to work my way through some of these this summer! I had to look up crunk in the urban dictionary :>) It’s one of those words you imagine you “get” but wanted to be sure :>) Today I am searching out the perfect Ginger Beer!

Kate@Savour Fare

I found your website via your book, and all I can say is where have I been? Anyway, I am amused by this list, because, yes, I did in fact go to college in New Haven, and yes, there were many gin and tonics involved. Now I’m more of a Manhattan in the winter, G&T or Rum and Coconut water in the summer kind of girl. Only if I’m lazy in the winter, I’ll just drink scotch.


But where, oh where, is the Bloody Mary, the One Drink to Rule Them ALL? I hope you are saving up to do a long post dedicated just to them. Mmmm… bloody mary….


so if I were a grown up trying to find a nice, easy-to-make cocktail to have after my very young children are in bed for the night while I fold laundry and watch Sleepy Hollow (or Bones or the Good Wife depending on the night, but always with the laundry)….is that really an amaretto sour? Because that’s what I’ve been drinking… 😀 (GREAT post. I’m going to try some of these!)


Pfft, anyone who thinks a Pimm’s cup has a low crunk factor has obviously never consumed any in the company of British people.


What about a nice microbrew? PBR has its appropriate time, but mostly, a good micro is where it’s at, any season.