2016 International Drink Off: Which Country Would Win Drinking?


We’re as impressed with Olympiads’ slalom canoe skills and synchronized diving talents as anyone, but we can’t help but wonder: Which country would win for drinking?

Enter the Supercall 2016 International Drink Off.

Aside from the sheer volume of booze consumed country-to-country every year, each culture has its own traditions and boozes of choice. We chose the winners of Supercall’s first International Drink Off based primarily on how much pure alcohol each country drinks per capita, as well as on the country’s overall population and drinking traditions. Here are the results:

Runner Up: Germany

Population: 80.62 million
Liters of pure alcohol consumed per capita in 2014: 10.94
Germany, we applaud your commitment to highly drinkable beer—you produce the fourth most worldwide and drink more than 100 liters per capita each year. We’re also fans of all of your delightful Rieslings and super-bitter liqueurs, but it’s not quite enough to win you the bronze. That said, we’d drop what we’re doing in an instant to join your legions of dedicated beer guzzlers in Munich for Oktoberfest this September. Prost!

Bronze Medal: France

Population: 66.03 million
Liters of pure alcohol consumed per capita in 2014: 11.4
France may be second when it comes to producing the most wine in the world, but it has one thing no other country does: Champagne. That alone is worth a bronze medal. It also helps that France’s 66 million residents can put back more liquor than 80 million Germans. Bien fait France!

Silver Medal: Russia

Population: 143.5 million
Liters of pure alcohol consumed per capita in 2014: 11.2
Russian drinkers wouldn’t need to juice up for this competition. The country consumed 1.37 billion liters of vodka alone in 2012—that’s the results you get from a venerable history of guzzling vodka, proving that practice really does make perfect. Russian tradition holds that you shouldn’t mix the spirit with anything (it’s considered cowardly) and that once a bottle is open it must be finished. Now that’s commitment.

Gold Medal: Ireland

Population: 4.6 million
Liters of pure alcohol consumed per capita in 2014: 11.75
Ireland’s population may pale in comparison to that of Russia, France or Germany, but the country is a drinking force with which to be reckoned. Not only does the Emerald Isle imbibe the most of these four countries per capita—nearly 12 liters of pure booze per person—but it also produces some of the world’s most notable drinks. The world would be a sad place without Jameson, Guinness and Baileys (not to mention dozens of other wonderful whiskies). We give Ireland the gold for heart, its people’s ability to hold their liquor (most of the time) and all those fantastic drinking songs.

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