Top 8 Reasons Why Alcohol Tastes Bad 

Why Alcohol Tastes Bad

You know the feeling: you’re out with friends, everyone is excited to try a new drink, and then… BAM! You take a sip, and it’s like someone just poured battery acid in your mouth. You desperately look around, trying to find a way to get rid of that taste. 

So, why does alcohol taste so terrible at times? There are multiple reasons why some alcoholic beverages might taste bad for you but fine for others.

In this post, we’ll highlight the reasons why alcohol might taste bad to you. Read on and find out!

1. The Throat Burn 

We are all familiar with that burning sensation down your throat when you take a sip. Throat burn is a common phenomenon for many social drinkers. It can happen if you have recently started drinking or due to other reasons. 

Well, in any case, according to this study, Ethanol is the culprit. Ethanol is a main component that actually gives the beverage its alcoholic factor. 

Ethanol breaks down the layer of saliva that coats our tongues. Because of this, we feel the throat burn, which literally makes a lot of people go – is this supposed to be enjoyable!? 

2. It Lies in Your Biology 

If it’s not your taste buds – it’s the genes. You’ve tried everything, from gin and brandy to whisky and vodka – but are still unable to enjoy any of it? It could lie in your genes, buddy.

Because this study highlights that the bitterness you feel depends on the type of variant of the receptor gene you have. 

Your taste buds are defined by your genes, and you must check out different types of drinks and explore a variety of options to come to a conclusion. If it’s a problem with your genes that a particular beverage tastes bad to you, then you’ve no option but to discontinue drinking that particular drink.

Chin up, friend; there is an entire world of drinks out there that you can chug without any problems!

3. You’re Not a Good Mixologist 

Why Alcohol Tastes Bad

We can’t all be master mixologists, and sometimes our attempts to craft the perfect cocktail can go horribly wrong. When it comes to mixing drinks, you must understand that balancing is key. 

Adding a bit too much or too little of an ingredient can mess up your drink by a mile. So, make sure you mix a variety of drinks together and experiment a lot! Because practice makes perfect.

Mix it up as you go, and you might land on a perfect drink. Remember, you need to succeed only once to make the best drink.

4. Impact Of Time

The flavor of alcohol can change significantly over time. Interesting things may happen to the flavor of an alcoholic beverage as it ages. This is especially true for specific beers, whiskeys, and wine bottles.

While it’s common knowledge that alcohol improves with age, in reality, that’s not the case with every alcoholic beverage. A few types of alcoholic beverages can go bad after a certain age, so it’s best to check the bottle for a ‘best before’ date before chugging it down.

5. Acquired Taste

Sometimes you have to agree that a particular drink is not for you. Just as some people dislike particular food items, who’s to say that everyone will love the taste of every beverage? It is highly possible that some people don’t have a taste for a particular alcoholic drink, and this beverage can taste bad to them.

But for some individuals, their journey to like alcohol and to be able to enjoy it doesn’t have a destination. This mostly happens because of cultural preferences and likeability to certain flavors – therefore, you can’t do anything about it. It can take time to get used to the taste of alcoholic beverages, such as beer.

If you are unable to get a taste for a particular beverage, then it’s best to leave it altogether and look for an alternative.

6. You Didn’t Store It Properly

Why Alcohol Tastes Bad

Different storage conditions impact the flavor of alcoholic beverages. Storing in unrecommended conditions can ruin the flavor of your alcoholic beverage. A drink’s flavor and scent can be messed up if exposed to light, heat, or air.

Sometimes the aroma and flavor of wines and whiskeys can evaporate away if you leave the bottle open for quite some time. Similarly, alcohol’s expansion and contraction at high temperatures can create oxidation and a less-than-desirable taste.

Keep your drinks in a cool and dark place which will ensure no direct heat or sunlight reaches the bottles. Giving your liquor the attention it deserves will reward you with a smooth drinking experience. 

7. Invest in Your Booze 

To save a few bucks, sometimes, we opt for cheaper options. It’s only human to want the best thing at reasonable prices. We’ve all been there. 

However, when it comes to alcohol, you might not want to cheap out in this regard because cheap alcohol cannot provide a fantastic drinking experience. 

If you buy cheap drinks, there’s a high chance your beverage will taste sub-par. As with cheap drinks, quality is the least priority. So, to make sure that the alcohol doesn’t taste bad, you’ve to start spending some cash. 

8. It’s All About Preferences  

Sometimes, we end up going in circles with the same kind of alcohol. It could be because you don’t like exploring much or the fact that you quit after that first glass because it was so horrible.

But if you don’t want to quit, then invest some extra time and find the best booze for yourself.  You’ll probably have to go through numerous to find the Cinderella to your shoe, but it will be worth it.


There you go! All the top reasons that give alcohol its bad taste. So, you can either explore to find the perfect alcohol that sits well with your taste buds or just blame it on the genes and stop drinking alcohol once and for all. The best solution is to experiment with a number of drinks and find the perfect one for you.

Cheers to discovering new and enjoyable drinks and to leaving those bad-tasting ones behind!

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