7 Essential Rules for Drinking Like a Grown-Up

Important things that every self-respecting drinker must know.


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The League of Extraordinary Drinkers sounds like our kind of outfit. It was founded by three cocktail connoisseurs from different generations, including one who writes about wine and spirits professionally.

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They were hanging out in New York’s East Village, “observing Millennials who have no idea what they’re drinking or why, stepping in puddles of vodka and Red Bull,” when they came up with the idea for a new book, How to Drink Like a Grown-Up

Lisa Hagan Books

A guide to proper imbibing, it “combines history, brands, and recipes in an entertaining way to make even the most naïve drinker into a confident one.” 

Here are their seven tips for drinking like an adult:

1. Admit to yourself that all vodka is the same.

“Vodka is just alcohol and water, nothing else. Buy any brand that’s affordable, and you can’t go wrong. Also, no flavored vodkas—ever.”

2. Master at least three cocktail recipes.

“Adults know how to make a few drinks from memory, and so should you. No self-respecting grown-up needs to Google how to make a Manhattan.”

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3. Embrace gin.

“There’s always something new to explore, as no two are alike. You’ll find a gin you love for martinis, one for gin-and-tonics, etc.”

4. 100% agave or nothing.

“If a tequila label doesn’t say it’s made of 100% agave, don’t drink it. It won’t give you HPV, but it certainly won’t taste as tequila is supposed to.”

5. Buy a great bottle of absinthe.

“Expect to spend a Benjamin, but one bottle of tried-and-true absinthe will last you years—and lead to some outrageously delicious drinks.”

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6. Prepare for rum’s comeback.

“With Cuba opening up, the world’s best rum, Havana Club, will inevitably arrive on our shores. Learn how to make a proper mojito between now and then.”

7. Always have good bourbon on hand.

“It’s the most versatile spirit, and brings people together regardless of political ideology or belief about who was the better Daario Naharis on Game of Thrones. Drink it neat, on the rocks or in cocktails. But mostly, drink it because it’s American.”