I love a good meal, but I'm no expert when it comes to pairing food with beverages. Sure, I know that you're supposed to drink red wine with a steak and white with chicken or seafood. And if I'm having a hearty winter stew, I like to have a Guinness or a Mayflower Porter with it, while a summer barbeque is best enjoyed with a hoppy IPA.
But when it comes to gambling, I know just what you should be sipping when you're at the tables or the machines. Just call me a gambling sommelier. So here are top-10 gambling beverage pairings you should think about the next time you're in the casino.
10. 5-card draw – Shirley Temple
If you're playing 5-card draw, you're probably not of legal age to be in a casino or drinking alcohol.
9. Video poker – Long Island Iced Tea
The most important thing a video poker player can do is find the best pay table to get maximum value. Even though drinks are free for players at most casinos, those looking for the most bang for their tipping buck should be ordering drinks with the highest alcohol content possible. And you're not going to find much that hits harder than a Long Island Iced Tea.
8. 5-card stud – Whiskey
If you're playing 5-card stud, you're probably not in a casino but instead in a saloon in the old West. Order a whiskey neat (they probably don't even have ice), and tell the bartender to leave the bottle.
7. Roulette – Cabernet Sauvignon
Roulette pairs nicely with any French wine, but a smooth Cabernet Sauvignon will lend an air of sophistication and elegance that fit this game nicely. And when you're holding a glass of red wine, you should be sure to bet on red.
6. Slots – Bloody Mary
A Bloody Mary is typically associated with drinking off a hangover the morning after a rough night. But I like to pair this drink with slots because I find slots incredibly boring. Give me a Bloody Mary and the kick from the Tabasco will awaken my senses enough to make it interesting.
5. Blackjack – Rum and Coke
You can have some pretty big swings in a night at the blackjack tables, just like a night drinking Rum and Cokes. It's fun and exciting at the start, but at the end of the night you end up with your head spinning and unable to get to sleep.
4. Texas Hold'em – Budweiser
Play Hold'em on the Fourth of July while drinking a Budweiser, and Uncle Sam himself just might come over and shake your hand.
3. Craps – Red Bull and Vodka
If you're looking for an overdose of adrenaline, this is the game/drink pairing for you.
2. 7-card stud – Genny Cream Ale
Most of the people who enjoy either of these things were born before World War II started.
1. Baccarat – Martini (shaken, not stirred)
If you're going to play James Bond's game, you might as well enjoy his favorite drink, too.
Home-game hotshot Aaron Todd has covered the gambling industry since 2006. While he is happy to play Texas Hold'em, he'd rather mix it up and play Omaha Hi/Lo, Razz, Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw, and Badugi. Follow him on Twitter @CasinoCity_AT.