The Thinking Drinkers Guide to Alcohol

I am still amused at the bravery (idiocy?) which compelled the thinking drinking duo to pull me out of the crowd to participate in their show, Broadway Baby lanyard clearly visible around my neck, notepad and pen in hand.

In a quick rundown of alcoholism over the last few millennia, the first beverage covered was beer. We were treated to a rapid history, from claiming that Jesus’ miracle was in fact turning water into beer and that Our Lord was undeniably an ale man, to talking about the Benedictine monks who were the first brewers. Then, one man came in dressed in monk’s robes to show the audience how to brew beer. Due to his vow of silence, the other man did all the talking. I was hauled out by the silent monk (‘Oh he’s picked a girl... again’) before a pungent mix of hops, oats and yeast was sprinkled into warm water; I was then rather suggestively shown how exactly to employ the handheld electric mixer. For my assistance, I was gifted with a bottle of ‘Bishop’s Finger’ beer, a drink whose dubious name is surpassed only by its foul flavour.

Attempting to prove that artists produced far superior work on narcotics than stone cold sober, the pair held up some Picasso reproductions which they claimed to have been painted when Picasso was ‘off his tits’. Right. They then held up another picture, ‘discovered buried in the British museum, a Picasso that the public has never seen before’, and painted during a time of alcoholic abstinence. It was a scrawl of a penis. After that startling cultural discovery, it was concluded that alcohol is in fact awesome and should probably be compulsory.

Next came spirits: vodka, rum, whisky, gin and absinthe. With shots circulating of each, my memory fails me of what happened next. I doubt it was hilarious. For strictly mercenary reasons, I would endorse this show for those on a tight budget. Where else in Edinburgh are you going to get five shots and a bottle of beer for a tenner? The show itself is irrelevant.

Reviews by Laura Francis

theSpace on Niddry St

The Bastard Queen

Traverse Theatre


The Assembly Rooms

A Split Decision

Pleasance Courtyard

Show Off


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
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Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
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The Blurb

Enjoy six free sublime spirits as the history of the world is distilled into an intoxicating hour of laughter, learning and life-improving libations. The ideal aperitif to an Edinburgh evening. 'Brilliant' **** (Skinny).

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