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Old 07-03-2019, 07:24 PM   #1
WaterAndWindSpirit
 
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Default Post apocalypse alcohol

Hello!

I've been wondering what would be the most common kinds of alcohols After the End. I'm not talking ethanol for use in vehicles/generators, but alcohols fit for human consumption. I'd expect alcohol from common/easily grown crops to be most represented (in areas with a clean river, sake because rice, in many areas vodka because it's easy to grow potatoes...).

Thanks!
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Old 07-03-2019, 08:13 PM   #2
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

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Originally Posted by WaterAndWindSpirit View Post
Hello!

I've been wondering what would be the most common kinds of alcohols After the End. I'm not talking ethanol for use in vehicles/generators, but alcohols fit for human consumption. I'd expect alcohol from common/easily grown crops to be most represented (in areas with a clean river, sake because rice, in many areas vodka because it's easy to grow potatoes...).

Thanks!
Mostly beer or wine, depending if fruits or grains grow better locally, with whisky/akavit or brandy for stronger beverages, depending on the common local potable. Anywhere sugarcane or sugar beets are grown will have rum. Anything more detailed than that, you're gonna need to specify where you're talking about and what kinda apocalypse it was.
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Old 07-03-2019, 10:40 PM   #3
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

It‘s trivially easy to make beer and cider (I‘m doing that right now), and for certain values of the term, wine. With access to honey, you get mead; you can even ferment milk. Historically, humans have turned any liquid to alcohol where this was even remotely feasible.

Distilling is not much harder, and doesn‘t require that much equipment - whether the result is of decent quality, or without long term health hazards, might be another question, but it‘s doable.
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Old 07-04-2019, 02:11 AM   #4
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

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Originally Posted by Dalillama View Post
Mostly beer or wine, depending if fruits or grains grow better locally, with whisky/akavit or brandy for stronger beverages, depending on the common local potable. Anywhere sugarcane or sugar beets are grown will have rum. Anything more detailed than that, you're gonna need to specify where you're talking about and what kinda apocalypse it was.

You missed mead. Anywhere there are honeybees, you can make mead.

If you have mead, and winter temps to about -5°C, you can make heart of mead (aka Viking Whiskey) - leave the container outside until it turns to slush, then decant into another container, straining out the ice. (One can get a stronger mead up above the 110 proof point - notable because that's ignitable).

While Beers, Ciders, and Wines are regional, mead is nigh-universal.
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Old 07-04-2019, 08:32 AM   #5
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

Corn whiskey will no doubt continue to be produced in the American Southeast, along with muscadine wine.
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Old 07-04-2019, 10:16 AM   #6
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

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Historically, humans have turned any liquid to alcohol where this was even remotely feasible.
This. Unless you're basing the entire plot around it, there will be beer or wine - just move on.

Beer, these days, is usually assumed to contain Barley/Hops/Water/Yeast & sometimes other ingredients, but historically, any fermented grain is beer, while anything else is wine. Even Mead is just honey-wine, rather than grape-wine.
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Old 07-04-2019, 10:20 AM   #7
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

<COMMERCIAL MESSAGE>
The Low Tech series in general at least partly covers questions posed by "what can we do if we lose higher technology?", and in particular GURPS Low-Tech Companion 3 gets into ways of producing alcohol.
</COMMERCIAL MESSAGE>
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Old 07-04-2019, 11:23 AM   #8
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

I would expect it to become pretty fragmented. One town does whisky. The next does vodka. The next does beer. It all depends on what equipment and expertise survived. And once something is produced it becomes a point of local pride. Try our carrot schnaps! Our pepper-infused wine is the best in hundreds of miles! etc.
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Old 07-04-2019, 12:16 PM   #9
Dalillama
 
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

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Originally Posted by ak_aramis View Post
You missed mead. Anywhere there are honeybees, you can make mead.
You can, but honey is often in shorter supply than other potential alcohol bases, and has lots of other uses.

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If you have mead, and winter temps to about -5°C, you can make heart of mead (aka Viking Whiskey) -
Or you can just use a pot still, the which medieval Scandinavia was unfamiliar with, and make honey-rum at any time of year alongside your whiskey and brandy.
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Old 07-04-2019, 03:24 PM   #10
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Default Re: Post apocalypse alcohol

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I would expect it to become pretty fragmented. One town does whisky. The next does vodka. The next does beer.
If history is any guide, everyone will do beer.
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