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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:17 AM   #1
dogjones
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Different alcoholic drinks, different effects?

Following on from the absinthe thread. Lots of people, including me, tend to attribute differing kinds of 'drunk' to differing kinds of alcohol. For instance, tequila seems to give me a silly 'speedy' drunk, but scotch gives me quite a 'mellow' drunk. Others say they can't drink scotch cos it makes them angry, but are perfectly ok with rum. Etc, etc.

Is there any real evidence that different types of booze affect people in different ways? I mean, the only active ingredient is alcohol is it not? So surely any differences would be cultural, or psychosomatic?

Of course, beer would tend to affect you differently than wine or spirits, as they all have differing alcohol contents, bubbles, etc - lots of variation. But sticking to the differences between spirits - would a 40% vodka have a tangibly different physical / psychoactive effect than a 40% whisky?
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:26 AM   #2
Miss Anthrope
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I think it probably varies from person to person. I am super sensitive to various types and have adjusted my habits accordingly.

I've spoken with my doctor and he said simply that some people are very sensitive. Nice insight, did I pay for this? I also tend to be very sensitive to all manner of substances. Prescriptions are tough.

My reactions to liquor:

Gold colored liquor in general: not pretty

Silver rum: bring on the hormones. I am an emotional wreck if I get so much as tipsy when I drink this. If you offended me seven years ago, this is when I'm going to bring it up and cry about it. I avoid rum, to say the least. It's concentrated PMS in a bottle.

Potato vodka: Awesome, clean, wonderful experience

Grain vodka, high quality: pretty darn good, but less fantastic than potato.

Homemade limoncello made with everclear: if it's cut with seltzer to bring down the sugar, an awesome time.

High quality silver tequila or Sauza hornitos: I'm called "the most charming, adorable and fun drunk ever".

Red wine: ok in moderation

white wine: bring on the headache after a glass.

Anything mixed with sugary juice like screwdrivers: VERY BAD.

Absinthe: it was fun, similar to tequila except a quite icky feeling in the morning. It felt like there was something warm and greasy under my skin for hours.

Thus ends the "Lounge Lizard's Guide to Getting Miss A Drunk in a Good Way".
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:29 AM   #3
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I've always wondered about this too. I'm curious about the grape v. grain thing. If I mix wine & beer, I get sick. I can drink either all day without the problems but If I mix.......ouch! I wonder if there is a chemical explanation fo r this?
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:33 AM   #4
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To hazard a guess, I would say a lot of it is how the drink is prepared and the location that might effect how much alcohol is consumed in a given time period. For example, sipping a scotch and soda versus doing shots of tequila and lime versus a margarita. Also, having a drink at home watching TV versus jello shots on Spring Break.

One (or more) bad experiences might leave someone with a preconceived notion, too. For example, I can no longer drink tequila after a particularly bad night at college; I'm actually lucky to have survived it. I can't stand the smell of it to this day.

Of course, I could be terribly wrong on all this and there might be something to do with what the alcohol is made from.. Grapes, grain, agave, etc.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:37 AM   #5
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Here is a little bit of info. It doesn't explain my horrid reaction to rum, but it does explain a whole lot.

ETA: It also validates my required egg breakfast after a night of drinking!
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:43 AM   #6
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I doubt it is the alcohol. It must be the other ingredients that are produced by the various methods. For example, I have a friend who can't drink gin at all because she is allergic to juniper berries. I can drink gin just fine, but I prefer bourbon. The various tannins and infusions affect the taste of liquors but they probably also affect the physical effects they have on you.

There may be a placebo affect as well. Some drinks just have a reputation that may influence how you behave.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:44 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by dogjones View Post
Following on from the absinthe thread. Lots of people, including me, tend to attribute differing kinds of 'drunk' to differing kinds of alcohol. For instance, tequila seems to give me a silly 'speedy' drunk, but scotch gives me quite a 'mellow' drunk. Others say they can't drink scotch cos it makes them angry, but are perfectly ok with rum. Etc, etc.

Is there any real evidence that different types of booze affect people in different ways? I mean, the only active ingredient is alcohol is it not? So surely any differences would be cultural, or psychosomatic?

Of course, beer would tend to affect you differently than wine or spirits, as they all have differing alcohol contents, bubbles, etc - lots of variation. But sticking to the differences between spirits - would a 40% vodka have a tangibly different physical / psychoactive effect than a 40% whisky?
This is not surprising given that even "pure" alcoholic beverages (e.g., gin neat or straight-up) are complex mixtures of different compounds. However, since that reactions that are listed here are primarily emotional, the personal psychological associations that one might have with whatever one is drinking cannot be discounted and may in fact be the primary factor in determining one's response to the particular beverage. I'm not sure that we can make a definitive statement (not that you ever were) about the differences in physiological effects that different spirits have on different individuals from personal reporting...but that doesn't mean that personal reporting isn't fun in and of itself .
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:46 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by dogjones View Post
Following on from the absinthe thread. Lots of people, including me, tend to attribute differing kinds of 'drunk' to differing kinds of alcohol. For instance, tequila seems to give me a silly 'speedy' drunk, but scotch gives me quite a 'mellow' drunk. Others say they can't drink scotch cos it makes them angry, but are perfectly ok with rum. Etc, etc.

Is there any real evidence that different types of booze affect people in different ways? I mean, the only active ingredient is alcohol is it not? So surely any differences would be cultural, or psychosomatic?

Of course, beer would tend to affect you differently than wine or spirits, as they all have differing alcohol contents, bubbles, etc - lots of variation. But sticking to the differences between spirits - would a 40% vodka have a tangibly different physical / psychoactive effect than a 40% whisky?
Well they all have different ammounts of other chemicals, as that is what differntiates all distilled spirits. So is it infused in an oak barrel, is it infused with herbs is it pulled straight from the still?

These can concievably have a real effect. Concider the current popularity of having caffine in things, there are now energy alcoholic drinks and so on.

So while it would seem to be largely psychosomatic, there could be real effects.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:54 AM   #9
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I'm guessing another factor is the sugar content of some drinks?
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:57 AM   #10
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There are other active ingredients besides alcohol. Whiskey and white wine often give me headaches. Here, ouzo has the good reputation that it doesn't result in bad hangovers.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 12:18 PM   #11
dogjones
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Found an old Guardian article on it.

The more I think about it the more I think that the differences are probably attributable to the myriad of causes other than the slightly different composition of different drinks. I doubt that the various tannins, herbs or any other ingredients have any noticeable effect. e.g., I don't think a pint of 'whisky' with all the alcohol removed from it, would affect me any differently than a pint of 'vodka' with all the alcohol removed from it. They'd both generate the same lingering, exquisite disappointment; the same sense of shattered dreams and wasted money.

It makes more sense to me that different drinks are consumed at different speeds, at different times, at different occasions, with different mixers. Also possibly one drinks to suit one's mood, rather than the other way round. The whisky drinker who gets angry probably drinks whisky because he's angry. I feel like brandy when I'm in a relaxed state of mind. When I'm full of energy and joie de vivre, gimme a sombrero and breeeeng on deh tequeeeeeelaaaaaaagggghhharriba arriba arriba andale andale!

So lak, dat's my jypotheseeeees, maign.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 12:25 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by El Greco View Post
There are other active ingredients besides alcohol. Whiskey and white wine often give me headaches. Here, ouzo has the good reputation that it doesn't result in bad hangovers.
Funny--here, ouzo results in a headache that would kill a dog.

I'll have to try it there.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 12:36 PM   #13
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I haven't touched a drop in 20 years, but back when I drank it sure seemed like different kinds of booze had different effects. I'd say there is reason to think you'd have a different drunk comparing say beer to hard liquor, just because of the huge difference in volume of stuff you drink for the same amount of alcohol. It did seem to go beyond that.

Seemed like the hangovers were different too. I hated tequila, but it seemed I could drink that all night and have only the mildest of hangovers.

I thought hangovers were the result of dehydration--how might the "impurities" (i.e. stuff other than alcohol) in a drink have any effect?
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Old 3rd April 2007, 12:47 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Mercutio View Post
Funny--here, ouzo results in a headache that would kill a dog.
Next morning, you mean ?

I haven't tested the claim myself but I've heard a lot of people saying it and I've met a lot of people the morning after who said (and looked like) they were very well. Of course, one can say that if they were not feeling very well then I wouldn't had met them Anyway, that reputation is very widespread here.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 12:49 PM   #15
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With alcoholic beverages, I find that the less I eat, the faster I get dunk.

Also, I find myself getting drunk faster with higher acohol contented material.

A beer probably would do anything right away or even at all, but one shot of "White Lightening" certainly would. On a more personal note, the less alcohol something has in it, the more I have to use the bathroom, but probably because I am drinking more of it.

I think this sort of thing is just common sense, but I wrote it out anyway...

And because of a singular BAD, VERY BAD experience, the mere whiff of Gin sends my stomach rolling.

---

Has anyone here tried moon shine?

If I didn't fear prosecution so, I'd have my own still.

At present, all that I can manage is a high alcohol content Brandywine.
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Old 3rd April 2007, 08:59 PM   #16
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The difference in the various alcoholic drinks is due to the congeners they contain, toxic chemicals that are formed during fermentation. Google it, or take a look at
http://www.banderasnews.com/0506/rr-congeners.htm
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Old 4th April 2007, 05:58 AM   #17
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Gin is a proven mascara-thinner. I wonder if it's the botanicals that make drinkers of it depressed.
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Old 4th April 2007, 06:25 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by joe87 View Post
The difference in the various alcoholic drinks is due to the congeners they contain, toxic chemicals that are formed during fermentation. Google it, or take a look at
http://www.banderasnews.com/0506/rr-congeners.htm
Thanks Joe, that was interesting.
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