A Beginner’s Guide to Hard Drinks

A Beginner’s Guide to Hard Drinks

More different from each other than you can imagine. It’s not just the color or the brand that makes them different. Taste, origin, ABV level (how much alcohol a drink has), and how they made are all different. Hence, why some people only drink vodka and why some people are committed to scotch despite its hefty price.

Here’s a guide on the big difference to all the hard drinks we know and love.


While it might look crystal clear like water, expect a solid black out when you chug this baby down. If you’re wondering what it’s made of, we first have to talk about the importance of potatoes. Since the creation of the universe, potatoes gave us the gift of french fries, mashed potatoes, and potato chips. Well, vodka also comes from potatoes which makes potatoes totally important. Vodka, unlike the other items on this list, are not aged. It’s heavily refluxed to remove any impurities, so what you get is a totally strong hard drink (35-50% ABV!). This makes it best to mix with cocktails.


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What’s the diff with whiskey you might ask? It’s all geographical. Scotch is basically whiskey from Scotland. Meanwhile, Bourbon is from the US. The main difference is the Scottish make theirs with malted barley, while the Americans make bourbon from corn. They all might taste the same, but to a true drinker, there are differences in texture, flavor, and hit.



Everyone’s favorite Jose is made from blue agave that only comes in Mexico. Its juice is fermented and distilled to create one of the deadly shots in the world with 40-50% ABV.


Gin is basically vodka infused with spices and fruits – consider it a fancy dressed up vodka. The infusion of botanicals and berries makes it extremely fabulous to taste. The average ABV of this hard drink ranges from 37-40%.

Brandy and Cognac

The drink of the oldies and oldies at heart is essentially wine. Wines that have around 35-60% ABV is distilled to create brandy. Any brandy made from France is called congac.


Be it Japanese or Scottish or Canadian or Tennessee, all whiskies are made from grains (corn, rye, so on). They are aged in barrels, which add to their taste. Oak barrels are commonly used, some even charr their barrels to get that smokey-oak flavor into whiskey. The flavor on this thing is intensely strong which is why people order it on the rocks, the melted ice helps balance the power of this hard drink.


This hard drink wouldn’t be possible without molasses. Made from sugarcane juice, rum is produced when molasses is fermented or distilled. Like whiskey, its flavor comes from being aged in its barrell – some are aged up to 25-30 years! This has a stronger hit with 40-45% ABV.

What hard drink do you want to try on your next visit to The Palace. Comment down below!

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