Food News

Middle class drinking: Normalising excess?

I rather enjoy a drink. Charlotte also enjoys a drink and to be honest there are very few people in either of our families who don’t enjoy at least the occasional glass of fizz when celebrating something. After reading a few articles recently talking about how issues with drink are now apparently focused on the wealthy(ish) middle classes, especially those of retirement age, it got me thinking about the issue as a whole.

With Charlotte and I just having had our first baby, we are now able to drink for the first time in nine months. During our period of not drinking, it was fascinating to see a side of life where restaurant bills were slashed in half, black out moments were banished, and we had no issues waking up in the morning due to a sore head! All in all, it wasn’t a bad experience and one that certainly helped to shape my view that drinking is a pleasurable experience but one that can be made all the better by a touch of abstaining.

Despite my own experiences, it almost seems like this middle class drinking ‘problem’ is a product of the normalising of excessive ‘posh’ drinking. With rumours going around that prosecco could soon be on tap at certain bars, and with the likes of the Malmaison hotel chain offering ‘all you can drink’ prosecco for £15, and bottles of wine and fizzy wine seemingly lower in price than ever before, the process of normalising drinking every day is becoming a reality.

There is no escaping the fact that the sort of alcohol that can really get you very drunk, including the terrifying glasses of wine at pubs that actually put you over the drink drive limit, is becoming more and more affordable for people looking for a way to relax after a stressful day.

With this trend set to continue, the question is whether society can afford to carry on this state of affairs. Will we find that we eventually end up picking up an enormous health bill, or worse find people starting to live shorter lives? Only time will tell! Let us know what you think by commenting below.

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