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Monday, Five Thirty: Why You Should Drink Vodka on St. Paddy's Day

March 17, 2014 at 6:11 PM | by | ()

In celebration of the most needed happy hour of the week, we're launching a new column called “Monday, Five Thirty” that will take a look at different vices from around the world, specifically boozes and beers unique to a destination. Last week, we sipped on beer brewed with bull testicles in Colorado. This week, we zoom out to get a sense of what the world is drinking on a larger scale.

In this column, we've been very focused on specific vices enjoyed around the world, and now we take a step back in an effort to gain a larger perspective. The beers and booze we highlight may be popular and novel in their country of origin, but in the grand scheme of things, the big boys - vodka, gin, whiskey, tequila, and rum - still run the show and drive the markets.

Earlier this year, the global economy news outlet Quartz put out a data map, shown above, that revealed each country's preference when it came to the most-drunk of the aforementioned five. Twenty five of the 53 countries polled were fans of whiskey, 21 preferred vodka, four for rum, and one, the Netherlands, had gin as their favorite (the 2 remaining had brandy at the top).

The most popular spirit in the States? Vodka, not whiskey, which is interesting considering the latter is in our blood. Some other surprises? Italy was one of the four countries who had rum as its number one. Whiskey, not vodka, was tops in Sweden, and Ireland, believe it or not, voted vodka over whiskey.

Vodka is the most-consumed spirit in Ireland? Man, guess we've been going about our St. Paddy's celebration all wrong. Martinis all around tonight as we close out the holiday at this evening's happy hour.

[Illustration: Richie King, Quartz]

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