Remember how we mentioned that alcohol is an acquired taste? No one ever drinks it because it is yummy. But eventually, with experimentation and experience, you find what tickles your taste buds and makes your heart and head sing (the obvious effects of alcohol). ‘Ladies like sweeter drinks and men love their bitters’ (beer and scotch) is a generalised statement that may not hold true for you.
Like Noni Appa in Twinkle Khanna’s latest novel, you could be a scotch fan. And we know of several men who would rather go ‘blech’ but drink beer to save face with their “Man” buddies. With a wide array of alcohol and cocktails and newer concoctions being churned up every minute, why settle for stereotypes? So, go on give your taste buds a shake till you find your soul mate!
This sweet range is the most palatable and popular, especially for beginners. Rose and sparkling wines and sweet liquors like Peach Schnapps are the simple and elegant choice.
Then beckons the entire range of fruity cocktails from watermelon martini to Pina Colada, Peach Sangria to the super Mai-Tai, and from strawberry daiquiri to the decadent eggnog. If you want to make your dessert alcoholic, then there is now a range of chocolate and caramel based cocktails that treat your sweet tooth while giving the thrill of alcohol. Go indulge yourself!
2. Khatta! (Sour)
A dash of lime, a splash of orange juice, citrusy zests, vinegar, and olives – these tangy sours are ubiquitous in most cocktails. The classic martini with olive juice, its sister – the appletini, gimlet, simple lime margarita, cranberry mojito or the timeless whiskey or bourbon sour is sure to add a zing to your day.
Most cocktails straddle the sweet and sour lines. Quite a few wines also boast a slightly sour, tangy taste. Still not khatta enough? Go desi with Imli Margarita.
3. Fire up!
What’s life without a little spice? For those that need the sizzle, the obvious choice is the fiery tequila. A shot that warms each of your senses as it burns down the throat.
Then, there are the provocative twists to the regulars. A red-hot chilli immersed in a margarita or a spiced jalapeno, the cucumber margarita is sure to set you on fire. If you want to tingle your taste buds even further, you can also try the chocolate-chilly margarita or the lip-smacking panipuri mojito.
4. Salty & Savory
A dash of salt makes anything taste better. Why should cocktails be any different? Bartenders swear by this ingredient and add it to bring out the flavours in most cocktails.
The immensely loved heavy salt rim on the classic Presidente Margarita is a clear indication. Another savoury favourite is the Bloody Mary. If you’re nursing a cold, try a Chicken Hot Soup Toddy. Health and happiness in one drink. Cheers!
5. Hey, Be a Man!
“Stop all this nonsense about sweet and salty. It’s alcohol. Don’t sissy it.” If that’s you, then go the old-fashioned way with beer and scotch. Bitters were earlier recommended by doctors for digestion. Seems this piece of advice was taken a bit too seriously.
If you’re looking for a little variety, try the fantastically nuanced Campari. It is definitely something that needs getting used to. But as the relationship develops, so will your love for this bright red genius. Take it a step further with a Negroni – a Campari-based family of cocktails.
The right drink for you is out there. A drink to suit every mood, to light up every occasion, to delight each taste. Keep searching and experimenting. If you have found your soul mate (ahem!) drink, then do let us know in the comments section. Happy drinking!