Why do you drink?

This got me thinking. I’d be willing to bet that the vast majority of people when they first find out what sex is think it’s gross, too.


Of course, it’s worth pointing out that the first experience of sex is probably less universally negative. Lol


Song on the topic: :wink:

As a boy, the taste was “Yucko!!” It provoked a sense of nausea in me.

I know I risk sounding like a snob to say this, but the American market for beer seems fixated on really crappy tasting beer.

I was blessed to find a four-year stint of ministry in Vienna Austria. It showed me that in the universe of beer and coffee, Europe was light-years ahead of anything in North America. I think they still are, though a smattering of Americans are waking up to the foody-flavors of European and American craft beers. Austrians, I learned, called beer “liquid bread.”

That’s a pretty good descriptor for Coors if you’re thinking of Wonder Bread or some similarly wretched white, starchy, tasteless baked product in the bread aisles of your local grocery! In Austria, “bread” will mean something like bauernbrot, wasserweck, hefekranz, or zwiebeck. You can get all your minimum daily requirements for most of the B-vitamins from drinking a couple of glasses of any “heavy” German or Austrian beer. It’s food in a glass as well as a beverage.

As to coffee, Starbucks was a small step in the right direction. But for the price, it cannot compare with roasting your own beans in the garage with a heat gun. I began doing this years ago and never looked back.


3 posts were split to a new topic: Coffee: A hot topic

High and low quality beers not withstanding, I suspect that most people don’t like the taste of any beer on the first try. And I think it’s the same for most wine and liquor, too. Make a mixed drink that’s mostly fruit juice so you can hardly taste the alcohol and I suppose it might be different.


I think it’s because we grew up drinking fruit juice and coca cola. Then you get this bitter flavor, rich though it may be. You’ve been trained to dislike it so of course you do. At first.

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That’s true for southern Germany as well. Up until recently (2005 or so) employees got beer in the normal cantene/cafeteria in companies. Bavarians have the toast “Hopfen und Malz - Gott erhalt’s” (Hops and malt, may God allow them to persevere)

Centuries back it was a very important part of the nutrition because the fermentation made it food that was very clean and hygenic as opposed to water sometimes. No surprise that it was brewed in monastries. During lent the normal was was replaced partly with beer for the reason @Fr_Bill described. The beer back then did have a much lesser concentration of alcohol.


I encounter a lot of the craft beer sorts in my work. XKCD says it best:


Same thing happening with dairy products- sweetened yogurt, bland butter, highly processed milk, the mildest cheeses… That’s what we eat, from childhood on, and a few blessed ones develop a taste for the good stuff.

We’re skewing our palates something awful here in the States.

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My bride agrees, Kelly

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I think the original post is concerned with why someone would drink under normal circumstances, and I’ve found this thread to be profitable for thought.

I’d like to suggest that the intoxicating effects of alcohol are useful when we find ourselves in unusual circumstances. I believe Scripture points to this use. See Proverbs 31:6-7.

Anecdotally I can speak of a coworker who had such a day that his best reaction was to have a drink and go to bed. There was nothing to be done at that point, he had been emotionally aggravated and it was not the time to explain why his current plan of action was foolish. Time was needed, sleep was needed. Why drink? Why not just go to bed? He was in such an excited state that this wasn’t going to be possible unless he first calmed down.

Personally, I’ve gone a few rounds with kidney stones. I like to think of it as bringing my liver along to suffer sympathetically with my kidneys. Passing them hurts (understatement) and while water is the main ingredient necessary to achieve final relief, the ways to cope with the pain are limited to crying like a baby on the floor, prescription pills, or having a drink to take the edge off enough to suffer silently.

(I’m not a doctor, don’t take this as medical advice. I’ve passed a stone or two, and another one required lithotripsy and a stint, no amount of alcohol was going to help there, my kidney ballooned - the stone was too big to exit normally. That was an expensive hospital visit.)

For the above reasons (and others already mentioned in this thread) I always have a bottle in the cabinet. Normally whiskey or rum. I think beer tastes like angry urine. Liquors can be mixed into most beverages and so are more versatile.

Heads up, if you’ve never had any kind of liquor you’ll think it taste like Listerine or fire, depending on the strength.

And now, to lose all respect: I like to put a shot or two in my chocolate milk.


Well, as far as blending flavors amicably, that one works as well as many others. A shot of many distilled liquors (whiskey, rum, brandy) and a few wines (sherry, port) are fabulous in a hefty mug of hot chocolate on a cold winter night!

As to medicinal uses of distilled liquors, my Mom had one she inherited from her girlhood: a pound of hard peppermint candies dissolved in a fifth of 100 proof Old Grand-dad. That stuff has a shelf-life so long that some of it available today might have been with Noah on the Ark.

When we kids came down with sore throats, out came the “cough syrup.” My memories of it emphasize the peppermint flavor and the fiery effect on the irritated surface of my throat - both effects going a very long way to soothing the irritation. Mom usually administered two teaspoons, the second one noticeably easier to ingest than the first.


Many commercial cough syrups also have (lower) alcohol. The main ingredient in the cough syrup (made by the doctor) my wife grew up with was brandy. A few years ago her brother talked about being “taught how to take shots by dad and his cough syrup.” Needless to say it was some strong syrup.


Right on. I’ve not enjoyed coffee to this point but I’m figuring out how to acquire a taste for it. Why? Connection with others. A morning-wake-me-up. Love the smell. Seems to me something I am lacking that I want to develop in. Maybe I’ll never get a taste for it, but it’s worth a shot.

I tried with coffee. My wife is a coffee drinker. We spent time in coffee shops, before we were married. I tried every type of hot drink on the menu.

My palate must be fundamentally lacking. Couldn’t find a single thing in the coffee shop that I could finish, not counting hot chocolate and hot apple cider.

Bah dum tissssss :laughing:

I got to liking the taste of coffee quite a bit, but with my health as it is now I can’t even have decaf- well, unless I want to spend all day with a resting heart rate in the 120s… which is the same reason I can’t have much alcohol. When I was in France, my tolerance was quite high (3 or 4 glasses, no problem). Now I can have about half a glass- as long as I’m also eating a full meal. But I do enjoy it!

Similar experience here.

College coffee shops… Med school… Residency… None of that was enough to get me drinking coffee. But then I started reading Jack Reacher books (that guy swigs coffee like there’s no tomorrow, started when he was four years old) that I actually started drinking it myself. Weird right?

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Interesting. Mom told me that she began letting me drink coffee when I was 10. We weren’t poor, maybe lower-middle class as to income. And, back then I’m sure Folgers Coffee was cheaper ounce for ounce than milk, which my brother and I would drink like water.

So, perhaps Mom had a fiscal incentive to allow me to drink coffee. At any rate, from this pespective, it seems as if I always drank coffee. Mom’s the one who pegs the starting point at age 10.

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