Article by Joanna Sarah-Freedman
Mulled wine, Snowballs, Port and Sherry – Christmas drinks really are some of the best things about the festive season.
But the star of the show has to be Baileys. Despite the brand trying to make it an all-year-round beverage thanks to clever marketing and new flavours, the one time of year we will always have a bottle of two on the shelf is Christmas.
And we know you guys love it, too…
Baileys is a holiday staple (Credit: Alamy)
No doubt, like us, you’ve indulged in a couple of creamy glasses (read bottles) whilst celebrating the holidays, with the fire crackling in the background.
But if you’re wondering how much Baileys you’d need to drink to get drunk, the answer is probably a lot less than you thought.
Yup, experts are saying that being ‘Baileys drunk’ is an actual thing, and it can sneak up on you more gradually than when you’ve had a glass of wine or spirit-laden cocktail.
The warm, fuzzy feeling you get after a measure or two of the Irish cream may not just be down to the fact you’ve consumed it while putting up your Christmas tree – it is actually thanks to the richness of the liquid itself.
“With Bailey’s, or any cream liqueurs for that matter, they have higher calories due to the thick cream and high sugar content,” says Dimple Athavia, booze expert and founder of All Things Drinks during an exclusive chat with Twisted.
Being ‘Baileys drunk’ is an actual thing (Credit: Alamy)
“Milk takes longer to breakdown in the stomach and the sugar masks the effect of alcohol, giving you a bit of a sugar rush! With neat spirits – vodka, gin, whiskies – they do not have the sugar and the ABV makes way into your blood stream much quicker.
“Of course the 20 percent ABV of liqueurs vs the 37-43 percent or more ABV of spirits do have a role to play here.”
Dimple goes on to explain that the cream in the liqueur doesn’t reduce the rate of alcohol absorption, it just slows it down.
“For comparison, black coffee and milky coffee have the same effect – the milk slows down the release of caffeine into your blood stream,” she says.
This is why that distinctive ‘Baileys drunk’ feeling can hit you a little more subtly, but sneak up on you nonetheless.
One too many Baileys? (Credit: Alamy)
“While the sweetness of the tipple is particularly drinkable, it can be easy to lose track of how much you’ve consumed,” she adds. “And as Irish cream is simply a mix of cream, sugar and Irish whiskey, it makes it particularly lethal – at around 17 percent ABV, it’s 3.5 percent more alcoholic than your average wine.”
So, there you have it, folks…there’s a reason that Christmas Baileys is hitting you. Drink responsibly, and remember to enjoy your tipple alongside a generous turkey leftovers sandwich.
That should do the trick!