Alcopops are basically fruit flavoured beverages laced with alcohol and targeted at the youngest sector of the drinks market. They are usually one of the following flavours: Lemon, Orange, Strawberry or Pineapple. Packaging is always bright, flashy and eye-catching, as well as the advertising.

Epileptics beware.

These drinks are normally drunk by teenagers who want to get gee-eyed, but don't like the taste of "normal" booze such as wine, beer, cider or vodka. They find they are more used to sweet things, seeing as many of the people who drink these drinks still eat skittles, starburst and chewits regularly. Often, they do not realise how much alcohol they are consuming, so frequent visits from Mr. Stomach Pump are not uncommon.

As for the seasoned booze-hound, alcopops can be a means of getting off your tits quicker than normally. If regular pints aren't getting you as drunk as you wish, then pints and alcopops (author recommends Smirnoff Ice) combined will help you achieve the desired effect with ease.

The downside of alcopops, aside from the teenagers drinking crates of the stuff then getting pregnant/stabbing each other/stealing cars, is the cruel, cruel hangover that follows. You will be physically and mentally ill for hours the next morning, and no amount of full english breakfasts will fix you.

Common brands of alcopop that spring to mind are: