Drinking is a serious business, and in that spirit (no pun intended) we need to define our terms before quaffing libations. Shot sizes vary depending on where you are raising your jigger but for the sake of definition, we’ll say our shots are 40 mls (almost 1.5 fluid ounces). As for “potent,” this will be scientifically defined by Alcohol By Volume, or ABV. A shot can either be a single spirit or a mixture; but there are major bonus points for things that fun to smell/drink/say. If you are looking to get your drunk on, go no further than the following ten shots.
10: Irish Flag. (30% ABV)
This mixture of Creme de Menthe, Baileys Irish Cream, and Grand Marnier hits you with the power of an oaken shillelagh. Though physically it is the weakest drink on the list, the power of this drink is metaphysical. The sheer spiritual toll it extorts from your sobriety cannot be exaggerated.
9. Pisco. (50% ABV)
This stuff can also found in Peru, but today we will be enjoying the stronger Chilean version. You can join the locals by drinking Pisco sours until the jaguars come home, but the pure stuff should be drunk neat. Sadly, after a few hours of imbibing something that can be described as having the taste of moldy corn tortillas, you will unfortunately not be able to match the neatness of your drink.
8. Four Horsemen and Hell Follows. (51% ABV)
A good old-fashioned mixture of Jack Daniels, Jose Cuervo, Jim Beam and Johnnie Walker isn’t strong enough for you, big guy? Good, because this lethal libation adds Everclear to the mix. In your face, decency and decorum!
7. Moonshine. (75% ABV)
Moonshine is fun because it comes from your bathtub, but try to remember that at this juncture we have entered “going blind from drinking it” territory. While some add flavors or methanol to their mix, enthusiasts know that it should be enjoyed straight, preferably from an old shoe, beneath a Confederate flag, stuffed deer heads, and while listening to the Dixie Chicks.
6 . The Cuban Fairy; (75% ABV)
If the insane alcohol level from mixing Bacardi 151 and Absinthe isn’t enough for you, the alleged hallucinogenic properties of absinthe will help convince you that your sliced-off ear is a lovely present for the prostitute of your dreams. This drink is a pyromaniac’s dream; it can and should be lit on fire. If you lack a lighter or the desire to risk burning off your alcohol, you don’t have to miss out. Drinking this causes plenty of internal burning as well.
5. Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster. (77% ABV)
The inventor of this drink was Douglas Adams, who stated, “The effect of drinking one of these is rather like having your brains smashed out with a slice of lemon, wrapped around a large gold brick.” While Adam’s original included hard-to-find ingredients such as Fallian marsh gas and an Algolian Suntiger tooth, you can recreate the Earthling version with little trouble. Combine Everclear (95%), Blackwood Distilleries Gin (60%) and Bacardi 151 (75.5%). Don’t forget the olive, either. Soon you too will be seeing planets explode and men with two heads.
4. Devil Springs Vodka: (80% ABV)
Planning a trip to Russia? About to enter a vodka drinking contest? Try practicing the “breath in with your mouth, out with your nose” with this tipple, which was scientifically designed to hate your liver. You can mix this with tonic or club soda, which at one-to-one would lower the alcohol percentage to that of pure Absolut vodka or Mt. Gay rum.
2. Nsafufuo. (95% ABV)
As Toto once sang, “It’s gonna take a lot to take me away from you. There’s no way that a hundred men or more could drink Nsafufuo”. Or something like that anyway. This menacingly strong palm wine from Ghana has other names in other countries, but one thing remains the same. Nothing good can come out of the next morning. Why would anyone drink this? TIA, man, TIA.
1. Spiritus (96% ABV)
This Polish rectified spirit is the Jacob Marley of the alcohol world. You may be quite happily living your life, but after encountering this apparition nothing will be the same ever again. Past, present, and future will fly by your eyes in a confusing blur of morality and guilt. Spirits this strong, despite the real chance that they can kill you, have a versatility bonus: if you have left over booze, you can use it to sterilize any medical equipment lying around, or to power your car.