View Full Version : Volumnous Consumption Part one
From some ot the chatter around these parts, one might assume that we're all imbibing 24 hours per day. To set the record straight, I'd like you to engage in my poll. If you're reading this post, please take the poll!
Now, please be honest here. I'm not your doctor/wife/husband/conscience/etc. so there's nobody looking over your shoulder. I'm just trying to get a general concensus about just HOW MUCH BOURBON is being consumed by SB.com members. By "shot", I'm referring to 1.5 or 2 ounces, what I consider to be a typical home-pour.
Away we go...
bottoms up, and http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif
Dave, I generally consume on average 1 drink in the evening on weeknights, and maybe 2/night on the weekends. That said, it is not unusual for me to go several nights to a week without a single drink. Just depends on what's going on and how busy I am.
Kinda like the person who tries to cut back to only one cup of coffee per day by buying a bigger cup, I tend to enjoy relatively high-proof bourbons http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif
I just came off a period where things weren't going so well and I looked to bourbon as a comfort food. I wasn't drinking to forget, i.e., I wasn't getting drunk, but I was drinking bourbon because I like it and I wanted to enjoy something I liked. I was having 2 or 3 stiff pours over the course of the evening, 6 - 7 nights a week, since springtime.
But, about mid-August, I stopped completely. Last week I had the first drink I had in five weeks. Right now, I am have only one measured pour (1.5 shots, about 2.25 oz) on Friday and one on Saturday. At this lower rate, I can drink the really good stuff and not go broke. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
BTW, I answered the survey according to my current consumption.
I usually have only one drink on any given evening. Maybe once a month or less often I will have two. And maybe once every six months or so I will have three. And I try to hold to a personal policy of never more than three.
So, right there, I'm limited to a max of about 9 drinks per week. But, on top of those rules, I try to limit myself to no more than 4 to 6 nights per week. So, I answered "3 to 6", but that may be slightly low. 5 to 7 would probably be the right answer for me.
I used to drink to get drunk, but I try to never do that anymore. I tell myself I'm to old to punish myself that way, but in truth, I wish I had never drank the way I used to. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif
I do not drink at all Mon-Thur. I drink 5 drinks or more Fri-Sat-Sun. As a rule Fri and Sunday are light and Saturday is heavy. I would be better off to have one or two a night but that has never been my style. I gave up bourbon for lent and had no problem with having one or two beers. I love bourbon and it is hard to just have one when I have bottles and bottles just waiting. Oh well I guess I'll be the Straight Bourbon Poster Child For Problem Drinking. Hats off to you one drink a night guys.
This is a very good post and is a vital topic for us all to talk about....its like the elephant in the room that no one claims to see. Personally I know I drink too much but I do set some limits on myself. I rarely go to bars...I am afraid to drive when I have been drinking (never had a DWI and definately dont want to get one)...I drink nearly always at home but never when the kids are here. I usually drink two nights, maybe 3 nights a week. However I almost always have at least half a pint...but usually not more than 12/14 ounces total.(Figure a fifth to a quart a week) I am a big guy...6'2'/ 250 but I realize that is too much bourbon on a regular basis. I have been to AA meetings but have never spoken and only attended a few...they are very valuable for those who want to stop. Right now I don't want to stop. This past year since I discovered SB has been the heaviest consumption year of my life. I dont know which came first, the chicken or the egg...did I go to SB because I was entering a new phase of drinking or did my enjoyment of SB promote acceptance and greater interest in bourbon and thus drinking?? I do know for a fact that I really enjoy this site and that armed with my much greater knowledge gained here, I have tried to taste nearly everything in the bourbon world that is out there. I am stating the obvious when I say that my bourbon tasting quest has found that Buffalo Trace has the best bourbons...but I like many others ...in fact few have been "bad". On a optomistic note they say that recognition of a problem is one half of solving it so perhaps I will begin to slow down...I know for the sake of my health it must slow down sometime soon. Cheers and salutes to my SB friends.
Buckky, your post definitely has given us all food for thought. At what point does being enthusiastic for bourbon become promoting alcoholism? I don't know if there's a simple answer to that question. My own personal experiences with SB.com have been more of a "don't drink more, drink BETTER" type of feedback.
I too am a big guy 237lbs and only 5'10". I used to do a good bit of power lifting so it's not all in my gut. I am proud of you not drinking and driving. I had a recent scare with that and it is not worth it. I feel strange drinking at home alone. I think that it points to a problem, or what could be a problem. I was drinking 7 nights a week before I started coming here. I cut out the weekdays in part because my wife was concerned and for my health. Funny thing is I do not miss it. Giving it up for Lent was harder than I thought it would be. I hope others will be as honest and candid as you have been. I have never been to an AA meeting and do not think I will as long as I can stay sober when I want to. If I ever reach for a bottle when I wake up I hope I'm in a meeting that night. One thing is for sure you are not going to hide your drinking if you drink Bourbon the smell will give you away.
I answered the survey regards bourbon, not spirits. Including everything, I drink on average 5-6 nights a week. I usually have half servings because I like variety. Most nights I have 2 half servings, but when I participate in a weekly 3 hour online chat, I usually have about 5 half servings. Also, on Friday and Saturday night I'm more likely to have 3 or 4 half servings. About twice a year I participate in whiskey get-togethers where I drink much more, 15-20 half servings over 5-8 hours. These are the only times I'm substantially impaired and I take appropriate precautions.
I usually drink alone because there are not many others locally who share my appreciation for spirits and I want to avoid driving. But "alone" is often online with likeminded friends.
I have heard that "2 drinks a day is healthy" I'm always in that range except for WhiskeyFest, etc.
Good point about the elephant. As you might have seen in other posts of mine recently, I was starting to get in deep and had to get out for a few weeks.
I envy the folks who can stick to one drink a night. It's very hard for me to do that. Actually, it's easier for me to avoid the first one, than to avoid the second one. So, as I am picking back up, I am having my wife be mt Kerberos. She is guarding the stash. When it's time for my alloted drink, she retrieves the bottle, lets me pour, then returns the bottle.
As I've started to tip toe back in, I am having several revelations in comparing the prior frequent consumption before and the occasional consumption now. Before, I would use more mid-shelf varieties. They were easier drinking, in general, and were cheaper to consume more frequently, e.g., Weller 12 yo, OFor BIB, OFitz BIB, AAA 10 yo. In other words, quaffing bourbon. Now, I go straight for my favorites which tend to be top shelf bottles. With only one drink per night, I want as much flavor as I can get, e.g., ORVW, GTS, EzraB SB. In other words, sipping bourbon (not to be confused with the harsh TN sipping whiskey). I don't want to waste my one drink allotment on the lesser stuff!
I work part-time (a couple of nights a week) in a liquor store, and started sipping bourbon/scotch/whiskeys just to be able to converse knowledgably with customers. But, I also have mild heart disease -- while even my doctor acknowledges occasional wine/liquor can be a good thing, obviously, too much can be hazardous -- so try to limit consumption. Generally, I never pour more than an ounce-and-a-half or two ounces, and maybe half the time have a second 'round'. All this maybe four times a week -- except for wine with a meal, always at home, so never while driving. So, I'm among the 'better-rather-than-more' school. I tend toward the upper-shelf items: any Van Winkle, A.H. Hirsch (while it exists), Weller's (not top-shelf, but top-notch), Basil Hayden's. And, I don't really care for the higher-proof offerings, because I prefer to taste the flavors neat. I seldom buy anything over 100 proof, and then generally drink that with a splash of water. Also, like many others here, I sometimes go days without a drink. I suspect I'm not all that dissimilar to most users of this forum, who are more interested in the experience and enjoyment of bourbon, rather than the potential effect of the alcohol.
I have generous (probably double) pour 3 to four nights a week of one bourbon. On the rarest of occasions I have two, usually when chatting with SB.com folk. The only exception to that (except with beer when my best bud visits from MA) is the bourbon festival, where we drank enough to kill a T-Rex, but had no where to go.
Good point about wanting to enjoy the flavors etc., rather tahn get a buzz. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/ooo.gif Although in some occasions, the buzz can enhance my drinking experience (while watching a movie for example http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif) most of the time I want to limit the effect of the alcohol as much as possible. I eat ahead of time and drink very slowly (usually less than one ounce per hour). I don't want the alcohol to cause me to miss the wonderful elements of the bouquet or palate of my bourbon. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif
Dave, thanks for initiating this thread. Reading so many posts on this forum has made me curious as to the drinking habits of others so this has been quite interesting.
I "voted" for 11 to 14 shots per week; though, like most everyone else, it varies greatly from week to week. I rarely have more than 14 shots per week (2 per night) but there are many weeks where I drink less.
I've taken the medical profession's "2 drinks a day are good for your health" as a personal standard. But I realize when they say "2 drinks", they mean 2 1.5 oz. drinks of 80 proof liquor. Mostly, my 2 drinks are at least 90 proof so I guess that puts me over what U.S. doctors would recommend. But I've heard that European doctors say anything between the 2 to 5 drink range per day is acceptable. I guess we can grasp at any number of scientific opinions to justify certain things but I believe, as I'm sure most of you do, that moderation and a little bit of responsibility go a long way.
Usually I'll have my 2 drinks an hour or two after a full meal. I usually drink as I read or watch television and I spend about 45 minutes to an hour on those 2 drinks. I try to follow up with a big glass of water and make sure I take my vitamins. If I'm drinking George Dickel, I forego the vitamins. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif
Just this weekend I was telling a friend how the buzz from alcohol really doesn't allure me the way it once did. I just love the smell and taste of bourbon and enjoy my drinks with or without any "side effects". He replied "Man, you HAVE gotten bad!" Oh well....
My wife and I are both wine nuts, love to cook, but I'm the solo bourbon drinker in the house. We love the way good wine goes with good food ... but neither of us likes the alcohol buzz. We have some wine just about every night with dinner. I then finish off the evening with a small shot of bourbon (ER17, EWSB,ORVW12,etc), sometimes with a cigar. Rarely will I go back for another shot (because I know I'll probably pay for it the next morning). I guess that makes me 7 times a week. Don't consider my drinking excessive....but someone else might. I really enjoy the many flavors you find in good bourbon. I've noticed one thing bourbon and wine drinking have in common....the good ones are hard on your wallet....but the bad ones are hard on your stomach. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif
I guess its time to chime in. Yes, I used to drink more than I do now. Since Feb., I have been on a physician mandated weight loss and carb control diet. Every drink means a swap for real food, which I cherish even more. The good news is that its all working and I've lost the weight and am in pretty good physical condition. I miss taking a drink whenever I want, just as much as I miss drinking a cold beer with a slice of pizza. I actually look forward to earning a drink. My stockpile doesn't disappear as quickly as it used to. The Bourbon Festival was a real challenge. Thanks to Jeff for dragging me out to the 5K run. In combo with a 25 mile bike ride on Friday, I just about broke even. This plan requires constant attention and I get immediate feedback when I cheat or overindulge. A blessing in disguise.
I agree - I drink bourbon for the taste and not the buzz. (And boy do I love the taste!) That's why I called it a comfort food earlier. My over drinking was not alcohol addiction, but a general misuse of food/drink to ease stress. The problem with bourbon as a comfort food is that the first drink enhances the desire for and weakens the will to resist a second (and third) drink, unlike the first helping of food which would satiate you most of the time.
In fact, one of the reasons I "graduated" from bourbon on the rocks to neat was to slow the consumption. Drinking neat gives me more flavor in smaller sips. Back in my MM on the rocks days, the drinks were like koolaid. They would go down so easy in that diluted form.
BTW, it's amazing the reactions I get from folks when they see that I drink bourbon for the flavor and not the buzz. It's a totally foreign concept for them. They look at me like I am crazy.
I may be just fooling myself, but I like to distinguish between "buzz" and "glow".
If I start thinking about making advances toward my neighbor's wife, that's a buzz. (Actually, this late in my life, I'm not sure that any amount of bourbon would cause that response, but you get the idea.) OTOH, if I feel a sensation of warmth and well being, starting within a few seconds after the bourbon hits my tummy, that's a glow.
If it were not for the glow, I probably would prefer A&W draft root beer to bourbon.
As an addendum to my previous post: Just want to clarify that while this past year has been my heaviest year of consumption, and while this has coincided with my gained knowledge from SB, my "over-doing" of a good thing is of course wholly my own creation. I just wanted to say that SB has given me an enthusiasm to try new products, however how much of that new taste I wish to consume has been determined by my own "foolish meter". I have given this alot of thought since the last post and have appreciated some good advice from some here who care. I agree it is easier to consume more when it is middle shelf and not as expensive nor as rich tasting. I have concluded that many here are right when they choose the "quality over quantity" philosophy...an obviouse choice perhaps but the stresses in my life and perhaps the habits of a lifetime have made this a conclusion reached by a crooked path. Thus I am going to buy just top shelf and see how long I can make it last. I have never been one to "bunker" bottles... too much temptation...(except when I get an annual trip to KY where I may pick up 3 or 4 top bourbons I cant get in OHIO) I enjoy taste comparisons, but usually do so near the end of a bottle where I feel I "know" it and leave an inch or so to compare with the next one. I frequently choose the next one based upon this desire to compare specific qualities. Once again I am long winded, but I think this is a great site with great people who have taught me alot about one of the best pleasures in life...any negatives are wholly my own. After all, if I had not found this site I would probably be making any overindulgence with "bad" bourbon and not wholly realize that there is an eloquence and intelligent style to "taste" rather than "drinking"....Thanks guys and girls... what next? Kentucky Spirit or Russell's Reserve...any opinions??
Both are very good, but Kentucky Spirit is better.
As I said some time back in a post, too much whiskey is never good for anyone. For some people, whiskey (and other booze) in any amount is a bad idea and they should stay away from it. We must always think about how much and how often we imbibe to ensure it does not get out of hand. Common sense should be applied: stop after one or two; NEVER drink and drive; eat well while imbibing. Don't drink every day. Don't try to drink and do any kind of work. Drink in the company of others, the drinks last longer and can be enjoyed more that way. Like many things in life, exceptions can apply (but not to the no-driving rule for me). Making an exception is a personal decision that entails the utmost responsibility and due attention to all relevant factors. The Bourbon Festival was such a case for me but I never (I feel) let it get out of hand. Everyone must act very responsibly and maturely in regard to any kind of liquor but especially whiskey because of its potency. I know everyone will agree on these basic good sense rules but it is good to remind ourselves of them from time to time..
I agree with Tim, go with Kentucky Spirit.
I generally limit myself to one drink (100+ proof) per night about four days a week. If I am drinking 80-90 proof I may have two drinks on a night. I know that there is a fine line between enjoyment and abuse. I have been all over that fine line many of times.
Kinda like the person who tries to cut back to only one cup of coffee per day by buying a bigger cup, I tend to enjoy relatively high-proof bourbons
Ah, that's a great way of thinking of drinking the higher proofs. "Yes, doctor, I only have two drinks a day...George T. Stagg!"
"Yes, doctor, I only have two drinks a day...George T. Stagg!"
HazMat at that! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/drink.gif
I posted a similar question before Mark pointed out this thread's existence.
Since becoming interested in whisk(e)y a few months ago, I have had a little just about every night. This is due in large part because of the enjoyment of the drink itself, but also because there is so much variety to sample and try.
It's usually one small glass per night, less often two glasses. I typically pour myself something when I've accomplished whatever needs doing that day and it's time to relax. I generally drink from only one bottle per night and give that whisk(e)y my full attention.
My partner has taken a similar interest in beer, tracking down and trying various imported and exotic brews. It's nice to settle in at night, each with something new and interesting in our glass.
As others have said, I too generally try to mitigate the effect of the alcohol. I only drink with food in my belly, and never to get drunk or even close. I have a glass of water nearby, generally alternating whisk(e)y/water, whisk(e)y/water. I drink a full glass of water before bed if I've been drinking. I certainly don't mind the "glow," but I'm far more interested in the drink itself than the intoxicating effects.
It's good to talk about these things, since any hobby based on an alcoholic beverage brings certain risks. The more open and honest we are, the less risk there is.
I agree. This poll and the resulting thread are very good to have here. My paternal grandmother was severely alcoholic and caused many headaches for my mother and father and especially my grandfather (who likely would have lived a much longer and happier life had this not been the case). While no other close relations have had such problems and I have not shown clear tendancies towards this so far, it would be unwise for me to tempt fate by overindulging and assuming I dodged the genetic propensity bullet.
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