Why do we drink? Because it’s the sociable thing to do? Because it catalyses our awesome personalities? To drown our sorrows and forget? Whatever your reason may be, if you’re still reading on, chances are that you’re a fan of alcohol. What you may not have realised is how telling your drink of choice can be about you. While you might have chosen your beverage of preference based on basic things like taste and cost, the rest of the party looks at you guzzling your fifth Red Bull and tequila and immediately jumps to certain conclusions. (Spoiler: the conclusions aren’t positive.) Perdeby decided to spare the first years the trouble of searching for their staple drinks by prescribing beverages that will match each (most) of their individual characters.

I’ve never had a sip of alcohol in my life

Welcome. You’re about to embark on a journey that’ll change your life forever. Or at least the state of your liver. First of all, there’s nothing to be afraid of. You see your friend over there? The one dancing on the table and singing Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” off-key? Do you see how happy he is? Alcohol is responsible for that. If you’re careful, your alcoholic maiden voyage can be a smooth and pleasant one.

Your usual: any cider. Ciders are great in that they come in a vast variety of flavours and are never really strong. They’re like apple juice with a bit of a kick. It’s an excellent way to get a mild buzz that you can handle without recoiling after every sip. If you’re not fussy about taste, opt for a beer. It has more or less the same alcohol content and might promote your reputation to the “seasoned drinker who’s seen it all, but settled on the familiarity of a cold sweaty beer”. Image is everything.

I only chose BCom because there was no degree in alcohol consumption

You require very little coaching (after all, you are the guy butchering “Bohemian Rhapsody” on top of a table). You’ve had a long blurry career with alcohol that could put Lindsay Lohan to shame, and it’s never a party until you arrive armed with half a bottle of Stroh Rum and a signature line that’s in the neighbourhood of “vat so, dorskeel!”

Your usual: the legendary Jägerbomb. You’ve probably heard of it: Jägermeister corralled by a mote of Red Bull. This is more of a shot than a drink but, let’s face it, you’re not the type to calmly sip on anything. The fiery punch of Jägermeister coupled with a caffeine jolt is exactly what you need to keep you going through any party. A word of advice: if you find yourself sobbing about your ex into a barman’s shoulder, you should consider making water your new usual.

I hate the taste of alcohol but I’m crippled by peer pressure

It’s a dilemma that many face: to fold your arms and make intelligent conversation or to join the blathering drunks balancing a drink in each hand? Some people like the party vibe but not necessarily the drinking bit. They fear the scornful looks they get when they announce that they’ll only be drinking water or coke. “Coke? What will we mix our brandy with?” is the usual response.

Your usual: a single vodka mixed with anything else. Vodka is a miraculous spirit (in both the alcoholic and divine sense). When mixed in the right proportions it can go completely unnoticed to the taste buds, all while doing its intended job. Another great positive about vodka is its unique property of being able to mix well with anything. Sprite, orange juice, ice tea – anything. Also, once you’re thoroughly drunk you have the perfect excuse to whip out that Russian accent you’ve been dying to try.

I have a very choosy palate

Shame. All this cheap alcohol at your disposal and all you really want is a 2005 chardonnay. Firstly, stay away from parties. You’ll probably offend almost everyone there with your discerning interests. Secondly, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t still get wasted. Just maybe lie about your age so that people don’t think you’re the pretentious twenty-something who misread The Great Gatsby.

Your usual: aged wine or whisky. There’s really no use prescribing anything specific for you, because you probably already have a favourite distiller and a favourite year. The only realistic advice you could benefit from is to stay in your financial lane. Aged wines and whiskies aren’t usually in the ordinary student’s budget and you might find yourself licking the bottom of your last glass while your friends are only on their first six-pack. Again, shame.

Photo: Gloria Mbogoma

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