Does craving the taste of mixed drinks necessarily equate to alcoholism?

Fairly often, I’ll crave the taste of a mixed hard liquor drink. It’s not always the same drink, but usually within the range of my tastes (bloody Mary, gin and tonic). The craving for the taste isn’t overwhelming, as I can fairly easily ignore it, but it is there. I don’t care about the buzz or any sort of comfort feeling that comes with the drinking… if I could drink them alcohol-free without changing the taste, I would.

My drinking usually occurs on the weekends, and almost always in social settings (very rarely do I drink alone). However, the craving for the taste can occur almost any time. Am I bordering on alcoholism?

Of course not. Addiction is a specific set of behaviors and physical reactions.

Merely craving something does not make you an addict.

I can’t put my hand on it, but I’ve got a questionnaire that puts a QUALITATIVE analysis on a person’s drinking. In short:

How often do (did) I drink (at the time) 4 days a week
How much did I drink 3-4 drinks at a time
How often do I black out? Never
How often do I miss work? Never
How often do I miss social/family things? Never
Do people tell you you need to slow down? Nope.

Essentially, it assigned a point value to my drinking, which as 3 or 4 points…it’s response was: You don’t need to worry until you’re up in the 12 point range, and at 16, it’s time for an intervention.

I’m not drinking near as much as I did then…it was affecting my triglycerides. But I found the act of rolling back to a couple drinks once a week was fairly easy to do.

Granted, some people have issues with Alcohol, but it’s helpful to remember a lot of people DON’T, and based on the society you’re in (Germany?) you might be labeled a tea-totaler.

Mixed drinks are often sweet, right? (they aren’t my thing)

I wonder if you are just craving sugar/food/calories… that kind of thing.

Anecdote: my wife had a strong craving for gum. She eventually realized it wasn’t the gum it was the sugar. She switched to a sugar free gum and lost all desire to chew gum. (It was probably a clue that she’d chew gum for almost exact as long as it took to become actually gummy and not sugary)

Does a virgin mixed drink satisfy the craving? Experiment time!

Naw, I don’t do the sweet stuff. Bloody Marys are tomato-y and spicy, and gin and tonics have a… well, the flavor can’t really be described. Neither is sweet, however.

There might be a virgin version of the bloody Mary, but I don’t think it’s possible to make a virgin gin and tonic. It’s like asking for sodium-free saltwater. :slight_smile:

When you next get the craving, order it without alcohol and see if it hits the spot.

No, I don’t think they’re the same at all. Besides having unique flavors that it’s completely legitimate to crave, there’s an aura of glamor around mixed drinks that it’s easy to crave for the same reason you crave any other luxury. I really want a gin & tonic right now for the unique taste but also for the cool, bulbous glass, the fat lime wedge, the clink of ice, and the feeling that I’m an urbane and leisured person with refined, classic taste.

A plate of sushi or an expensive watch would make me feel pretty much the same way.

Virgin gin and tonic is sort of a tonic with a twist and dash of juniper based bitters.

I get cravings for drinks like mai tais, or strawberry daiqueries that I cant indulge, and I do drink v8 so I don’t really crave bloody marys as I can make a virgin one and it falls into my normal snack plan. If I could make a virgin strawberry daiquery that had no sugar or carbs at all in it I would be in heaven. [it is the taste not the booze I want]

You don’t sound like an alcoholic to me. An alcoholic can’t control their behavior. You can. I sometimes get a craving for a pint of Guinness, and that’s just that. No alcohol problem.

A gin and tonic certainly is sweet, unless you’re using medical quinine.

I make nonalcoholic Bloodys fairly often, with plenty of fresh lemon juice, vegetables and spices. Very nice.

Not meant as a slam to you, OP, but it amazes me how quickly people (generally Americans) jump to freaking out if they’re an alcoholic because of something even slightly related to booze.

I’m not a huge drinker, but I can appreciate the difference between an alcoholic and non-alcoholic version of a drink, especially a sweet cocktail like a margarita. It’s like any other ingredient, it affects the flavor.