Harry drank deeply. It was the most delicious thing he’d ever tasted and seemed to heat every bit of him from the inside.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Of course, the OG of wizarding world drinks is Butterbeer – a comforting, warming pick-me-up that Harry and his friends enjoyed on numerous occasions.
Taste-wise, Butterbeer is said to have a foamy texture, and can be served either chilled in bottles (with Luna Lovegood to known to collect the corks to make necklaces...) or hot and steaming in a tankard. J.K. Rowling once said she imagined Butterbeer to taste a little like butterscotch.
In Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the characters visit a dingy speakeasy called The Blind Pig, which introduces us to a new, transparent-looking wizarding drink: Gigglewater. Now, as the name suggests, this causes the drinker to get slightly giggly, as Jacob (a No-Maj, not accustomed to such things) found out in one rather amusing scene.
Meanwhile, in the Muggle world, Gigglewater is a slang term and was usually used to describe champagne. The terminology cropped up in the 1920s, when America was dogged by Prohibition and the famous alcohol ban. Meanwhile, in the wizarding world, Seraphina Picquery, the President of MACUSA, avoided the ban, saying the ‘Gigglewater is non-negotiable’.
From Gigglewater to Gillywater, this tipple seems particularly more modest. We only see Gillywater mentioned a few times in the Harry Potter books; this is Professor McGonagall’s drink of choice at The Three Broomsticks, and we also see Luna drinking it. Harry professes to not liking it much, at one point.
Can we assume the ‘Gilly’ part is in reference to Gillyweed, the magical seaweed-esque plant that Harry eats to breathe underwater for his Triwizard Challenge in Goblet of Fire? We’re pretty sure Professor McGonagall didn’t develop gills when she drank this, but we do wonder if this makes Gillywater a healthier drinking choice for social occasions.
Bill walked over to the sideboard and pulled out a bottle of Firewhisky and some glasses.
‘Here,’ he said, and with a wave of his wand he sent twelve full glasses soaring through the room to each of them, holding the thirteenth aloft. ‘Mad-Eye.’
‘Mad-Eye,’ they all said, and drank.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Presumably a more intense wizarding drink, especially judging by that name, Firewhisky (particularly the brand Ogden’s Old Firewhisky) was a favourite among numerous wizarding world characters, such as Gilderoy Lockhart, Rita Skeeter and Ron’s Uncle Bilius. One poignant use of the drink saw the Order of the Phoenix toast to the recently-fallen Mad-Eye Moody in Deathly Hallows.
We’re going to hazard a guess that Firewhisky has some sort of quality beyond our regular Muggle whisky that makes it so popular.
We see the wizarding world characters enjoy a goblet of wine on numerous occasions (Hagrid, perhaps the most frequently) but one quirk seems to be that house-elves make a particular type of wine that everyone enjoys.
This is the drink that Hagrid and Slughorn enjoyed a substantial amount of during Aragog’s funeral, with the three toasting to the elf-made wine during the celebrations. House-elves certainly are talented fellows, so we imagine their wine-making skills are pretty great.
Pumpkin juice, or just general pumpkins for that matter, are certainly not exclusive to wizarding folk, but this drink (usually served iced in a flagon) does seem to be pretty popular in Harry’s world.
While the gourd is usually a staple of such occasions like Hallowe’en for Muggles, pumpkins are regularly enjoyed all year round among wizards; with pumpkin pasties also heralded as a casual snack. Fair enough. They’re pretty nutritious!
Which wizarding world tipple do you dearly wish was real?