How To Day Drink Like A Total Pro And Not Feel Like A Hungover Zombie The Next Morning

You don't need me to tell you that day drinking takes stamina. It takes skill. It takes a good group of friends hand-picked by you based on years of experience (OK, mostly the four to five years you spent in college) in order to be sure the company you keep will keep you standing up for the entirety of an afternoon.

Day drinking isn’t a quality that gets mentioned much when discussing the cornerstones of friendship, but it really should. I mean, when you’re passed out in a lawn chair and everyone else in your group is moving from the BBQ to the parade, and they don’t physically carry you with them, well, then it’s time to drop them.

Luckily, I have a great group of day drinkers to surround myself with, but I do consider myself a has-been when it comes to day drinking. I used to be in prime condition for this sport. From street parties, parades, and carnivals, drinking from morning to morning is a part of the Cajun culture I come from. But, now, 'tis but a memory, and with St. Patrick's Day almost here — the greenest, booziest, luckiest reason to day drink of the year — I'm going to need a refresher. And, maybe you do too. Hey, it may be possible to improve upon perfection.

Here is everything you need to know (or remember) about drinking in the middle of the afternoon, from prepping for the day to getting enough sleep to do it all over again.

1. Condition like a champ

Let's talk about training. (I mean, stretching isn't necessary, but maybe you'll want to feel a little limber if you're planning on doing a lot of wobbling.) First, you need a good night's sleep the night before. So, do NOT let the idiot in your group convince you that if you "just go out for like an hour, then you'll be fine." You know better than that, or at least you should. Stay home, call it a Netflix night, and then call it a day.  

Next, you need to get hydrated. Start the night before. The night you've already sworn to me that you'd devote to your conditioning. While you're doing some binge watching, drink some good ol' H2O. Better yet, drink coconut H2O in whatever flavor best wets your whistle.

The next morning, when it's time to head out to get the morning party started, head over to the store and take a look at some of the pre-drinking refreshments that can help keep you hydrated throughout the day so that you can last longer and won't have to worry about having a pounding headache by noon. 

2. Assign your fellow day drinkers clear roles

No party-poopers allowed, and leave your picky, swanky, first-class friends at home. Day drinking is dirty, and the last thing you need is a friend who is going to kill your buzz with wine tasking. (Ain't nobody got time for that, well, except for your other friend who does everything she says....). 

In addition, be sure you've got the Mother Hen of the group lined-up to lead you all for the day, because she will be the only one able to move the group along from point A to point B (drunk or sober, this girl is mad sharp with Google Map directions and trivia nights, which means you will end up at the best bar and win more beer). Also, find a buddy (don't roll your eyes all offended by the child-talk, drunk adults are like children) so that you're at least with someone when you're wasted and your phone dies. 

3. Remember to pace yourself

Don't get ambitious right out of the gate — you want to plan the venues that will keep the party going at a manageable pace. First, do a little pre-gaming at someone's apartment, but don't get too comfortable. You don't want your guests to get so cozy and so drunk that all they want to do is nap and miss the best part to come.

The next stop in your day drinking itinerary should be the actual event. (Remember? It's the whole reason why you're day drinking in the first place.) This is the parade, the concert, the race — whatever. The event itself will keep everyone focused on the fun at hand with drinks as an accessory, leaving enough energy (hopefully) for everyone's finish line: the after party!

By this point, girls usually want to dance and dudes usually want to do shots; a mix that's best done after you've gotten up the hill so-to-speak in your day drinking hike.

4. Pick your poison wisely

Beer is always the best choice when day drinking, because it hits you slowly, accumulating at a decent rate you can usually handle. Beer, unlike liquor, won't typically sneak up on you. But if you're like me and unfortunately don't like the taste of beer (I know, I'm weird), then try the below cocktails (themed specifically for St. Paddy's Day coming up soon) that go from smooth to whoa, I'm feelin' lucky like a leprechaun right about now.

Kiss Me I'm Angry  (by mixologist Haley Jensen of Taproom 307 in Manhattan)

  • 1 oz. Irish Whiskey
  • 1/2 oz. Amaretto
  • 6 oz. Angry Orchard Green Apple

In a pint glass, add ice, whiskey, and amaretto. Pour Angry Orchard Green Apple to the top. Stick a straw in, give it a whirl, and enjoy!

Emerald Mojito 

  • 2 oz. Crater Lake Vodka
  • 2 oz. white grape juice
  • Mint
  • 3 slices lime
  • Soda water

Muddle lime and mint in a cocktail shaker. Add remaining ingredients along with ice in the shaker. Shake well, and strain into a tall glass and top with a splash of soda water. Garnish with lime, mint sprig, and orange slice.

5. Pack the right equipment

One necessary component to any day drinking guide (aside from the mandatory flask with your favorite spirit) is ensuring that your phone stays juiced up so you can meet up with friends if you decide to ditch the crowd you started out with (or chase that guy your friends hate — no judgement here, we've all been there), and get that Uber ride at the end of the night. 

On days like these, I wear a bag that charges my iPhone (as well as other Apple mobile devices and Android). That way when I'm away from outlets all day, I won't have to ask the bartender to charge my phone and then leave it there overnight by accident (because I've absolutely done that and it sucks). The all-in-one ($175) by emPOWERED is a good size for me, because it's still small enough to use as a handbag if I'm going fancy-schmancy. 

Another option that is less expensive is the ZipStick ($29.99), which is a portable battery pack with a built-in LED flashlight and panic alarm (and it comes in cute colors and patterns like a cool black matte and cayenne polka-dot print).

6. Get to bed early, because you earned it 

The best part about day drinking, if you do it right, is that you earn the right to an Irish Exit if you so choose (especially on St. Patrick's Day). No one can give you shit for slipping out a bit early, because you started drinking early. Whew! So, enjoy an early night so that you can sleep off a hangover with a full night's sleep. There is nothing better than hitting the pillow drunk and knowing that you've got a full eight hours of glorious zZz's head of you.

BUT, before you drift off to that loopy-drunk-lucid dreamland, be sure to drink a glass of water and take Ibuprofen. Then pat yourself on the back — you survived!

Images: Melody Joy Kramer/Flickr; Giphy (6)

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