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Reasons Why We Drink by cdbakunas
April 10, 2013, 8:20 am
Filed under: Libations, Reasons Why We Drink | Tags:

Garden to Glass Cocktail at SanctuariaI was working with a friend who owns and produces Royal Rose simple syrups. They make perhaps the best, 100% organic, simple syrups in America. Truly fantastic quality and explosive flavors. After hanging out with Forrest Butler I realized that I had my alcohol/industry blinders on and had only thought of Royal Rose syrups as bar/cocktail accoutrements. Shame on me. We engaged in a wonderful conversation with Steve Carrow, of Chicago restaurant, Naha about “temperance cocktails.” Cocktails that had no alcohol in them. Everyone I know, work with, interact with, party with, dine with drinks wine, beer or spirits. It’s what we do being gastronomes and imbibers. It had not dawned on me that there is a woefully underserved segment of diners that want high quality drink options whilst dining at the finer establishments across America. Let’s face it, cranberry juice and soda water is not very exciting.

It got me thinking last night about why we drink? What are the myriad reasons for drinking? Yes, there are many, many reasons and I thought that this would be a good category to explore on our blog.

The obvious #1 (at least obvious to me) is that drinking brings pleasure. Of course feeling that tinge of inebriation or “buzz” is often wonderful, the act of sipping fine wines, excellent brew and superlative distillate is a pleasure in and of itself. To enjoy the aromatics, the complexities, the silky texture on the palate or the sparkling pop inside the mouth is a very physical experience and if you live well in your own skin it’s pleasure. Living in the flesh we were given five senses and in my opinion it would be a disastrous decision as a human to ignore the utter joy of tasting, feeling and smelling all the wonderful things that we can put into our bodies. Drinking is just one of those manifold experiences.

Our ancestors drank for thousands of years and though many of the prime motivations for drinking have ameliorated over generations (such as moderation leads to balance and longevity) the simple fact that drinking is pleasurable, and in community it is a way and time to bond with family and friends, is as potent today as it was 1000 years ago. Some people drink and become loud, laugh more, weep, become flustered or anger easily. Alcohol impairs judgment, period. That being said amongst friends can’t we let our guard down? Needing an outlet to explore feelings that are normally pent up is an utterly human desire and imbibing with friends offers exactly this outlet. Come on, if you can’t get a little stupid with your friends they’re probably not your friends. I’m not saying get hammered each weekend, act like an ass, start fights, scream, cry and punch and it will be alright. But feeling safe enough to open yourself to discourse that you normally do not have is a deep seated desire in humans and often moderate drinking gives us the motivation to do so. So be it. I’d rather have a few beers with pals then go to my doctor and spend money on pharmaceuticals to assuage my fears.

To explore the question of why we drink I encourage you to answer and post your own reasons and numbers. Here are the beginnings of mine.

#1 Reason Why We Drink: Because it feels good.

#2 Because someone discovered that grain and sugar made beer, and grapes made wine and god put all that right in front of our noses, so why not?

#3 To bring us together in community on cold, long winter nights…warming our bellies and our softening our hearts….




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