Surviving the wine shortage: a tramp’s guide

Mr Horse

Mr Horse

Recent news of a global wine shortage has caused a panic among the general population, with supermarkets reporting panic-buying of Blue Nun and cross-channel ferries to France fully booked with people desperately trying to stock up to beat the crisis.

But it doesn’t have to be like this. There are other ways to escape the crushing reality of your daily life without wine, and you don’t even have to resort to hallucinogenic drugs. A number of other alcoholic drinks, which are not in short supply, will complement your meals just as well as your favourite wine, and give you that same warm, fuzzy glow that helps you to forget how awful your job is. Harold’s favourite tramp, John Horse, takes you through some of the alternatives:

Tennent’s Super: A strong, full-bodied lager that is the choice of the true connoisseur. Best served straight from the can with an angry glare, a sweary rant and accompanied by chips or half a sandwich pulled out of a bin.

White Lightning: A sweet, chemical taste with just the subtlest of hints of apple among the complex flavours. Can be combined with Tennent’s Super to make snakebite if you’re feeling fancy and want a swanky cocktail. Best enjoyed under a bridge.

Asda Smart Price vodka: An acquired taste but well worth the short-term hard work for the lasting rewards of unconsciousness. Best served for breakfast.

Homebrew: With the increasing numbers of householders brewing their own, homebrew is more accessible to the average drinker. With variations that encompass everything from raspberries and vanilla right through to wood smoke and burning tyres, there’s something for every palate. Ideally should be served from someone else’s garden shed, but may be found in gallon drums ditched by remote rivers. Best served out of a shoe.

Perfume tester bottles: Generally come heavily scented but in very small doses – rewards persistence. Best served as a dessert drink.

Anti-freeze: Served by some of the bitterest ex-partners and mafia bosses, this tipple may not warm the cockles but will stop them icing up. Perfect for those wishing to get blindingly drunk. Best served with homicidal intentions. Or fish.

Meths: “The old original”. As effective as battery acid but less astringent. Best served with nose-peg (clothing peg taken straight from a washing line will work nicely.).

Your own piss: Desperate times can call for desperate measures. If you find other drinks, and cash, every bit as scarce as wine then you could try pissing in a cup and drinking it. It might not be pleasant, but there’s every chance it will have at least a moderate alcohol content. Best served early in the morning for a fuller, richer flavour.

Lambrini: Actually, that’s going a bit far. Forget that one.

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