How Gin Came to Be Known as the Big Bad Wolf of the Spirits World

Despite the ubiquity of craft cocktails, many myths still exist about alcohol and its effects—myths which often inform, or limit, the choices imbibers make during a night out. However, one could argue that no popular spirit is met with as much trepidation as gin. Drinkers accredit all kinds of maladies to the classic spirit, from horrible hangovers, to depression, to anger or even insanity.

Understandably, people often abstain from consuming certain spirits because of bad experiences from the past. Sense memory is a powerful thing. But the ingrained cultural bias against gin seem to run much deeper, and the deleterious effects that some attribute to gin and only gin can, at times, reach amusingly implausible levels. Getting “gin drunk” is often associated with crazy or mean behavior. Some people feel the spirit makes them “sad” or “weepy.” In this narrative, gin is cast in the role of emotional instigator.