Friday, 11 May 2012

Reserva Especial 2010 CS Carmenere

This evening I pooped down to the local branch of failing retailer, Tesco and picked up a bottle of one of their current discount crap fest red wines.  Reserva Especial 2010 - Cabernet Sauvignon Carmenere - Specially selected for Tesco.  This wine is described by its optimistic label as "full bodied" when in fact it tastes like inside rim of a 1970's wooden school toilet seat that hasn't ever been cleaned.  The first impact is the punch to the sinuses that only comes from piss poor Tesco wines, the pong of chemically cleaned vats kicks you right in the breathing apparatus and reminds me of the decongestant, pseudoephedrine hydrochloride AKA sudafed.  After this smash in the fizzog subsides the taste of deodorant soap kicks in, vaguely perfumed, vaguely chemically the  taste leaves you with buyers remorse of the most spectacular proportions.  After 2 or three sips you have the urge to run into the street screaming "WHY WHY!" while ripping your garments like a deranged bearded mystic  So in summary, nope.

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Thunderbird.

When I was a university student I had a friend who studied at Aston University in Birmingham.  Now this friend was a quite normal chap except that he had very little "party" experience due to religious upbringing.  This inexperience led to him adopting, what I can only describe as the most hedonistic lifestyle known to man.  The floor he shared with about 5 or 6 others descended into a booze fuelled hell and include a truly evil thunderbird habit.  Now thunderbird is produced by the Gallo winery, you know the people that make average tasting normal wines that line many offies shelves.  It isn't widely known but Gallo made a fair fortune from Thunderbird a cidery come winey fortified concoction straight from the bowels of hell aimed squarely at the bum wine market.  Now part of my friends daily life was getting a tube and funnel, inserting the tube directly into his stomach and poring 75cl of this crap directly into his guts, the result would often be unconsciousness.  This is of course the same man who bought a bottle of amyl nitrate from a sex shop, dipped his cigarette in it, lit it and burnt his eye brows off. In fact so infamous was my friend that 20 years later my Uni friends describe him as "that twat from Aston".  I digress, back to the review, under no circumstances would I recommend Thunderbird, it is  possibly the most sickening crap ever produced, up there with a can of 2p curry sauce from Lidls or imitation value vimto.  Its just goes to show that booze companies are completely merciless in their marketing, knowing 100% that if they produce awful cheap booze, poor alcoholics will buy it.   People of Britain I urge you - poor this stuff down the sink and save yourselves from the Aston experience.  Forget minimum pricing plans, forget controlling binge drinking, the single biggest factor in liver disease is awful muck like this..ban it and save the NHS a fortune.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Brain damage cocktail.

Bargain boozing means that you rarely get to go to the pub without stoking up on super strength lager before hand.  Local friendly boozer "The Kebab and Calculator" does a particularly bad line in discount cocktails and top of their cheap offerings are string of hideous concoctions known as "shooters".  Shooters are aimed at inebriated young woman with little or no clothing, who are attempting to achieve extraordinary levels of pissedness as an aid to attracting a thuggish, knuckle dragging mate , whom they hope will pound them like a Salvation Army drum in the car park opposite club2vomit.  Shooters have smashing names like "nob me" and "blow job" but in actual fact taste like the infamous cocktail from the comedy Bottom. "The Esther Rantzen", as it was called can be made made by mixing pernod, ouzo, marmalade and salt and is so christened because it "pulls your gums back from your teeth".  Brain damage, hilariously suggests that the volume of booze being necked actual causes you to have brain injury *ha ha guffaw guffaw*.  It is made by floating baileys in schnapps and mixing it with grenadine which ends up looking like a mini brain in a jar.  When you first "shoot" a brain damage the first sensation is off sticky gloop, which is very reminiscent of Night Nurse and funny enough (apart from the vague sensation that there might be some kinder chocolate in there somewhere) it tastes like it to.  When the stuff hits your palette the urge to puke is overwhelming and it slides, and I mean SLIDES SLOWLY, down your throat lining your organs as it goes.  When it plonks into your guts its sits there menacingly aggravating your stomach lining so much that  it becomes impossible to even think about having a another drink.  The nausea stays with you all night and prevents any plans you may have to seductively obtain one the young ladies (in next to no clothing) that tease the senses of every young male. So in summary, you can never be drunk enough to attempt drinking this evil concoction.

Anything described by Tesco as "oaky" .

Were to start on this one... A while back Tesco had an excellent selection of wines, well chosen balanced and of good quality. Somewhere over the last 2 or 3 years the wine buyers at Tesco  must have lost their collective minds and started buying randomly like panic stricken kittens.  The result is frankly shite.  Where at one point it was quite possible to purchase a wine at £4.99 that tasted reasonable it is now impossible to do so under a tenner.  The vast majority of the low cost wines can be compared to ribena that has had a tramps sock in it for three months.  The worst culprits are the so called "half price sale" items which seem to be bulk purchases from an anti-freeze company in Tunisia.  Of course the "half price" thing is a bit of a swizz anyway, the definition of a sale is that it has to be on sale at the original price in one store in Britain for 28 days sometime in the proceeding year.  Essentially Tesco and pals can sell "Chateau Grot - Reserve" at the full price at one Tesco Express far from civilisation and then claim to the rest of us that they are slashing their prices.  These end fillers look great and always carry the title "Reserve" or "Special" in a way that makes us all think "by god this is a bargain" of course reserve and special mean nothing more than some bright spark at an ad agency thinks it sounds posh.  Over Christmas these are especially popular and thousands of people are put off red wine taking a swig always followed up by the sentence "I don't really like red wine you know".  You know what I don't when its shit!! The worst criminal in  the Tesco pantheon however is anything they describe as "oaky".  Oak aged means usually that a wine is literally kept for a long time in a oak barrel, oaky on the other hand means fuck all. Quite often the "oaky" flavour is just a mask for the myriad of crappy chemicals in the wine itself, or a euphemism for "tastes like Brut aftershave.  Tesco's slide from world leading retailer, that treated its customers and staff with respect (and knew what tastes ok) continues . My estimation is that by 2015 the entire wine aisle will be lined with paint thinners cunningly renamed as "classic red reserve" and the acrid taste described on the label as "cheeky" or "lively".  Avoid.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

MD 20/20

Who ever thought up 20/20 was clearly aiming for the under 12s alcoholic market. Its price for a start is clearly set to be within pocket money parameters and coupled with the fact it looks like a kids colour dream its principal purpose must be to intoxicate toddlers .  Its a very long time since I have sunk so low as to buy this sort of trampagne, but once upon a time it wasn't unusual for me to sup the occasional bargain bucket brain smoosher such as this.  If you order a case of this crap on line these days you can actually pay as little as £1.98 a bottle, at roughly 18% this means that your average rough sleeper trying to  fight of the freezing cold, can get to blotto level without having to drink 3 litres of white cider.  This convenient fact means that the constant trips to the wee wee pot are cut in half reducing your exposure to the freezing weather.  The taste of "Mad Dog" 20/20 is not as unpleasant as you imagine and tastes like the last house gin and orange from the bottle or a weak orange squash spiked with meths.   The strange sight recently of attractive young women gently sucking 20/20 from a little mini bottle and a straw in pubs and clubs, makes me question the very nature of the Universe itself, what possesses these otherwise sane individuals to decline the offer of a frothing pint of lager in favour of a drink that may be causing spleen bleeding?  There are many flavours of 20/20 of course and the blue one that may be the contents of a marine glow stick seems very popular down as my local offie, especially with the parade of mid-teens who hang around furtively waiting for the blind lady to come on duty, so they can purchase this grot by putting on a deep and impressive voice.  So in conclusion, unless you are homeless or juvenile this drink will loose any appeal the moment you open the bottle.  It may however be good for killing roaches.



Monday, 23 April 2012

Old Rosie Cider.

Wetherspoons...a word that puts fear into your average god fearing publican.  Wetherspoons are a giant conglomerate that swallow up customers from the local pub trade.  In particular your average booze hounds who usually would prop his wobbly backside on the bar stool of a normal boozer is instantly attracted to the airport like d├ęcor of spoons not to mention its bargain bucker beer listings.  I once popped into my local spoons for breakfast and a friend was behind the bar, as you do I asked him "how are you" and he said .."how the fuck do you think I am...look around....its like a bloody homeless shelter in here". He was right, everywhere in the soulless dump there were scruffy bearded blokes supping their morning pint of bitter, getting their calories from the latest discounted booze bought en masse by the spoons boys and girls.  One Christmas my mate suggested that I pop down for a pint with him, as he was essentially a full blown alcoholic, his pub of choice was of course spoons.  Not knowing the territory at all, being strictly a solitary night time boozer, I of course agreed and on arriving decided to have a pint of Weston's Old Rosie cider.  Holy flirking schnit this stuff is strong, and at the time £2 a pint.  As all scrumpies it had a sarson-esque tang with made your gums recede from your teeth, but holy crap strong and after 2 pints I  began to literally spin.  I honestly think that draft beers and ciders really should not be served at the same strength as German wine, especially in pints.  Its basically an invitation to make poor people develop a psychosis, a fighting habit and liver disease.  Remember 2 pints is all it took me to get to horror status and my poor guts did suffer like mad for the next few hours. As cheap drinks go this is evil, under no circumstances should 2 pints send any man to edge of Satan's abode. I mean if you had 2 glasses of wine and began to imagine you were an ox or something the stuff would be banned.  In my journey through the cheap and disgusting this was a mile stone, never, ever, ever drop so low as to drink this kind of muck before the hour of 5pm, never ever ever.  In short avoid.

Poachers 90p bitter.

Way back when I was skinny and had hair on my head and not on my arse I used to frequent one of the dodgiest boozers known to man.  This pub in question is now a rather nice hotel , shame on them.  The toilets in this place used to flood at high tide, strange when you consider it was at least 100 metres from the sea.  In fact you were never quite sure if it was salt water on the floor, urine or a cocktail of both.  Strangely the carpet used to stick to you feet like velcro as you popped to the bar.  As I was under age at the time the trip to the pub was always a thing of wonder and adventure and as I was a sixth former my funds were somewhat limited to the arse end of the bar.  In this case this was "Poacher bitter" which cost a whopping 90p, you have to put this in context and consider that your average pint was around £2.50 at the time.  This was weak as hell, but I felt like a big boy as I supped what seemed like a glorious dark brown liquid.  On reflection the stuff tasted like burnt crisps, but bunking off during "recreational activities" it seemed to be me like to be the very nectar of the gods.  One occasion I had 5 of the damn things and nearly fell over on the way home to look sober and eat dinner with my parents. So yes my boozing began early and yes it has been an escape from the otherwise bland lower middle class existence I  trotted through then and the massively crap existence afterwards. So in summary , if you ever come across a retro bottle of Poacher, for gods sake sling it!

Tesco Value Bitter.

You know the whole point of drinking when your poor and fed up is to kill the mental angst, drown it if you will in a  soup of cheap chemicals and ethanol. One dark and stormy night I ventured out with £1.05 in search of quick bang from a cheap product, I was perhaps hoping that Frosty Jacks or White Lightning was discounted at my local branch of Spar.  Alas, no such "luck" and I was forced to pop into to the nearby branch of shitty supermarket, Tesco. Searching the wine aisle I could find nothing at this rock bottom price but the blue striped 4 pack from hell, Value bitter.  Value bitter is a contradiction in terms.  It is cheap, but it is no way value as it tastes like metal and has about 0.00008% booze in it.  You might as well be washing out a bottle of surgical spirit and drinking the resulting fluid.  How Tesco manage to get such a strong metal taste into a liquid is a flaming miracle, lick a lump of iron ore, its pretty much the same effect.  The horrifying fact is that there is a whole range of this tripe, running from Value lager to Value Gin.  Value gin need not be tested, its sits there on the shelf suggesting that 2 sips may make you blind.  In fact I bet you £100 that its never been near a juniper berry, let alone the 47 excellent flavourings in a glorious product such as Tanqueray. Value whisky surely is just turps coloured with a tincy bit of black treacle, flavoured by nothing more than the tears of a thousand Laphroaig drinkers. The most frightening of all must be Value vodka, which must lead to thousands of alcoholics to wander the streets of our nation in a confused manner, involuntarily voiding their bladder and bowels at the slightest shock.  So in summary, if you fancy picking up the washing up bowl after a particularly greasy roast has been washed up, then Value bitter has a very similar effect.  Avoid as if your life depends on it.

Frosty Jack's Cider.

Frosty Jacks is a familiar brew to those acquainted with poverty boozing.  Its bright enticing advertising and stunning blue bottle seems to mesmerise even the most resistant park bench dweller.  Some time ago I was dirt poor and needed some kind of mental relief from the shitty grind of my existence, as I had roughly £1.45 a day to spend on booze my first port of call was Mr Frosty.  Now Frosty Jacks is repellent in the extreme.  The taste in mixture of value lemonade and drain cleaner, a tip here, if you don't want to squirm every time you take a gob full, then drop a skittle sweet into it.  The skittle fizzes away and  takes the edge of the nasty saccharine and adds a satisfying after taste that reminds me off the cough medicine actifed.  The taste is not the real problem with Frosty Jacks though, its the effect it has on your sexual performance. In the 6 months I resorted to the Frosty crutch my crotch was as flaccid as a wind sock on a gentle June morning.  I know this is probably is too much information, but this stuff really should carry a health warning. "Warning the will shrink your winky like a swim in iced water" should suffice. So in summary if you want to slowly die of ischemic heart disease while being impotent Frosty Jacks is your man, otherwise use to keep frost from your car windscreens.

Echo Falls Red

In this first entry of plonk review I decided to purchase and consume some of the most commonly available low price booze on the market, that being Echo Falls "red".  The official blurb for this particular falling down water describes the contents of this companies bottle as "delightfully fruity" and " Soft and round with hints of ripe plums, black cherries".  Sadly for me these descriptions must be the musings of a mental advertising executive as the wine I drank was far from this mellow description .  At first glance the contents of the bottle looks vaguely like the insipid juice of a bruised sloe and when smelled, the brain starts screaming warnings about the potential contents.  Do you remember that smell of old lady perfume or lilac talcum power?  On first taste you get a overwhelming sense of drinking a combination of the former and some hideous chemical grittiness that makes your tongue itch.  The second, "after taste" is just as hideous and grasps the back of you throat, literally making your gag reflux throb, your throat screaming for release from the clinging torture that is this putrid crap.   It coats your mouth, your throat , your teeth, its just very very unpleasant indeed.  A few months back I was at my local having a pleasant evening with friends, when one unsuspecting individual ordered a glass of red for me.  Kind as this was, the taste of the wine in question made me want to throw up so hard it would have dislodged my eyeballs. I put it down to the 4 pints of "Cornish Rattler" I had previously necked but alas, on return to this boozer last night I noticed proudly displayed behind the bar of battle of this toilet water just glaring at me threatening to pickle my insides into porridge like mush.  So in summary, if you want to die with a taste of perfume in your mouth then Echo Falls red is your man, otherwise avoid as if you very existence depended on it.