If you woke up on New Year’s Day without a
hangover, there’s a good chance you partied the right way, especially if you didn’t mix your drinks. Only bad things happen from weird alcohol combos. But did you know there were people out there in the world brewing some truly bizarre alcohol from scratch? We’ve found 10 seriously strange libations out there in the world, some of which are so utterly disgusting, you’ll be doing Dry January after reading about them — even if you woke up fine in 2020.
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10 Weird Alcohols
Thanks to the global craft beer expansion, there’s definitely some wacky beers continuing to emerge from microbreweries all over. But how about corn beer fermented with spit? That would come by way of Peru, where chicha has been brewed since the days of the ancient Andean civilizations. It was traditionally produced by way of chewing and spitting out maize, with the resulting juices then put into a regular brewing process. Thankfully, most chicha is made these days with more modern, non-salivary methods, but you can still brew it the old way -- although why you’d want to is anybody’s guess.
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Snakebite -- a beer, cider, and blackcurrant juice combo -- is a pretty delicious drink from the U.K. But how about making alcohol using an actual snake? In a revelation that should be filed under "Things That of Course, Someone Has Done," you can go to China and find actual rice wine that has been infused with the body of a dead snake. And it’s still in the bottle! The idea stems from traditional Chinese medicine, with the belief that snake essence can do wonders for vitality and health. And who are we to argue with ancient medicinal methods? On second thought, maybe we should.
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On its own, the word "kumis" sounds pretty innocuous, like the name of an obscure vodka you’d only find at a European airport. One search for it on Wikipedia, however, will make you recoil in horror, for "kumis" is anything but innocuous. It’s fermented horse’s milk. A product of Mongolia -- and everyone knows how much they love their horses out there -- it is reported to taste every bit as sour as that sounds. Better leave this one alone at the duty-free.
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Chilean Fog Beer
We’ll admit that this one doesn’t sound disgusting, but its brewing process is odd enough to include on this list. Ale from the Atrapaniebla brewery in northern Chile uses water captured from actual fog. The mountain communities in this part of the world get their freshwater by catching moisture in nets from the clouds that roll in off the coast. It’s an ingenious method, but with a scarce yield; the brewery only gets 24,000 liters of water a year, meaning the best way to sample it is by making a trip out there.
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Ivanabitch Tobacco-Flavored Vodka
It says a lot about the quality of cheap vodka that so much of it is sold flavored. We’ve all been guilty of a shot of flavored vodka at some point, but what about one that hearkens back to the days when you also thought smoking was cool? Well, Dutch vodka company Ivanabitch has you covered with this cigarette-tasting monstrosity. No doubt there’s a vile aftertaste and plenty of regrets to be had with this one, but at least you avoid that hacking smoker’s cough.
D'Amalfi Limoncello Supreme
Limoncello is pretty awful in its own right, but there’s always a way to up the ante. Step forward, D’Amalfi Limoncello Supreme: a ridiculously priced variant of the Italian liquor designed with the ultra-rich in mind. This concoction is sold in a bottle designed by U.K. artist Stuart Hughes, and shows off three single-cut 13-carat diamonds, plus a huge 18-carat diamond to top it all off. The going price is roughly $44 million, but what’s weird about this one is that there’s absolutely nothing "luxury" about the liquor inside -- it’s just standard limoncello. If there’s a good reason to tax the rich, it’s to keep them from spending money on insane crap like this.
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Gilpin Family Whisky
Another inoffensive-sounding addition to this list, Gilpin Family Whisky sounds like the kind of small-batch brand your hipster friend raves about. But be warned if you get a recommendation for it: it’s no easy drinking. In fact, it’s whiskey produced by sugars from the urine of diabetics. It comes by way of another U.K. artist, James Gilpin, who’s a type 1 diabetic himself -- although how much of his own bodily fluids he submitted for this art project is a question that can probably remain unanswered. To use a well-known British idiom, he definitely "took the piss" with this one.
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Malort proudly represents the U.S. on this list. Sold out of Chicago, it’s a hideously bitter liquor that was originally invented by Swedish immigrant Carl Jeppson, likening the drink to the digestives found in his native country. Being wormwood-based, it’s often likened to absinthe -- but unlike absinthe, it carries absolutely none of the flavor. Instead, it’s been compared to that horrible aftertaste you get when you drink orange juice just after you’ve brushed your teeth. This very same aftertaste can also linger in your mouth for over an hour. Gross.
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Changaa is what happens when Kenyan crime gangs wind up competing with each other on the moonshine market. Though it’s originally a grain-based liquor, the illegal version of it is often sought as it’s cheaper and more potent -- and can often have literally anything added to it to derive that extra kick. Battery acid, jet fuel, and even fecal matter can be added to the mix, meaning this is one bad brew that won’t just get you trashed, it could outright kill you.
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Tezhi Sanbian Jiu (Three-Penis Wine)
We’ve saved the best for last -- and by "best," we mean the absolute worst. Another Chinese addition to this list, Tezhi Sanbian Jiu -- translating as "Three-Penis Wine" -- is a liquor infused with animal dicks. Not just one penis, either -- dog, deer and seal penises to be exact. Again, there’s an angle: supposedly drinking it will improve a male’s virility. We can’t think how, though; if anything, drinking this stuff seems like a great way to remove yourself from the gene pool.
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