With any luck this blog entry will help some of the newbies to traveling in Oz on the best (loosely used) brands of goon to drink in order to aid those party fueled evenings with what is the cheapest type of alcohol in Oz. Goon is bagged wine found in boxes which usually hold around 35 -45 regular 175ml glasses of wine and come in either the white or red variety. Unpopular with most Australians but stand tall as a firm favourite among travelers and the homeless,
sporting a top end price of around $20 for the designer bags and the lowest coming in at around $9 you can guarantee that your already light wallet won’t further decrease in weight. I’m not gonna lie and tell you that the taste is sensational and that goon doesn’t contain traces of egg and fish but if you can get your head around this and fancy a cheap night and horrific hang over then this is the stuff for you. So without further a due here are three goons rated on price, alcohol content, aggressiveness and hangover potential (HP)…
Whilst in Griffith I was staying at a hostel called the ‘Griffith International’. This is a working hostel where work is given to you regardless of how degrading it might be and each and every day you work adds to the 88 days of regional work you need to complete in order to extend your working holiday visa. This place is also a ‘goon den’ where experimentation with this bagged beauty is rife and a seemingly 24 hour event. Stanley goon, which was a solid favourite among the [do action=”booking-com” name=”Griffith International” url=”http://www.booking.com”]backpackers[/do] backpackers was also a very competitively priced bag of joy which I came back for over and over again.
Was it the semi-professional font used on the box to catch the eye of the novice goon purchaser or was it the abusive side effects which kept me coming back for more?
To be honest I’m a sucker for things that look slightly established and tried and tested so maybe it was the classy Italian script font which was used on the packaging. In terms of taste you could say that Stanley goon is ‘more than tolerable’ with a hint of artificial citrus ‘e’ numbers and a light-ish density, which to me indicates less egg in the ingredients. Easily mixed with lemonade, the white goon that is, you can expect a spritzer which tastes like a cordial and allows you to drink way too much far too quickly. The result being an absolute mess head of an individual who can’t see what he is drinking after about ten ‘Stanley spritzers’ and a potential faces an early doors night of shame.
Price: $12.99 Alcohol content: 12-13.5% Aggressiveness: 8/10 HP: 9/10
Golden Oaks goon
In Oz this particular brand of goon is considered the most popular and is purchasable at almost every liquor store. It is also considered to be a ‘first rate goon’ which at an extra dollar per box is absolutely worth it. By first rate I basically mean you can tolerate the taste and actually drink this wine without a mixer due to its sweeter body of flavour. Among travellers this is by far the most popular goon and is often mixed with most kinds of soft drinks both fizzy and still. The mixer which I have yet to taste Golden
Oaks with or any other goon for that matter is Coca-Cola, which is surprisingly to me a very unusual soft drink to mix with Goon or any wine, yet is extremely popular as a mixer within backpacker hostels. Nonetheless, if you are embarking on your travels in Oz you will undoubtedly come across the Golden Oaks brand of goon and more than likely enjoy a few heavy nights on it ;).
Price: $13.99 Alcohol content: 12.5-13.5% Aggressiveness: 8/10 HP: 8.3/10
Coolabah goon has the nastiest dry and chemical taste of all the goons even though it is the weakest at 9.5%. It is the cheapest goon which requires its consumer to have an asbestos throat lining and ten dollars in their wallet, with which you will get change from. This brand should only be drank as a game of dares among other travellers
wishing to try some of the worst wine available on the planet and should always be taken with a quality branded mixer to counteract the distinguishable taste that Coolabah has to offer (Petroleum).With an alcohol strength of 9.5% it is amazing that Coolabah’s taste can be compared to that of a cheap Polish vodka. So if I was to summarise this goon it would be that it is a full bodied box of misery that cannot compete with the other goons available. Drinkable with a mixer and palatable when drunk neat by the hard core drinkers of the planet. But if you’re on an extremely tight budget and are required to get drunk with your mates then take on half the 4 litre box with a mixer (you can have the other half for breakfast as you’ll still have no money by then).
Price: $9.99 Alcohol Content: 9.5% Aggressiveness: 9.5/10 HP: 9.7/10
Some facts on ‘Goon’
The goon bag (space bag) has a lengthy shelf life but you are highly advised to drink the contents within the expiration date to avoid some pretty severe stomach problems.
Most goons contain fish parts and egg to help extend the preservation process of the wine
Goon has been linked to increased alcoholism in Australia and is known as a very cheap alternative to normal bottled wine and more expensive varieties of other forms of alcohol.
In some states/territories in Australia you cannot buy goon before four o-clock in the afternoon through fears of spurring on increased alcohol abuse.
The brand ‘Slap the Goon’ was discovered in Oz and now has a cult following. A chap from Byron Bay once slapped a bag of goon and claimed it to increase the effects of the goon (clearly drunk and having a laugh when he came up with such nonsense). Backpackers and fellow drinkers of goon became wise to this and it went viral across Oz many years back. The new slogan for slap the goon reads ‘Something this bad needs to be slapped!!!’. This as you can imagine happens a lot in hostels across Oz and has spread to other countries in the world. Fair play to that guy in Byron Bay that day!
Goon is more economical to manufacture thanks to the shiny ‘space bag’ and box which holds it as opposed to traditional wine bottles.
A small history of Goon (very small)
Goon was invented in 1965 by an Australian chap called Thomas Angove and was the first person to patent and copyright protect wine in a cardboard box. The brainwave came from his wanting to shove one gallon (4.5 litres) of wine in a carton to sell in mass. He succeeded and the birth of GOON had just happened.
Adjustments on the goon packaging have been evolved into the ‘space bag’ which is stored within the box and delivers a much more impressive shelf life for the goon. Thus allowing travellers and broke-ass people to ‘drag the bag’ around with them for as long as possible. So here is to you Thomas Angove you massive legend although a possible contributor to the rise in alcoholism over the years…
So I hope you have learned a little bit about goon here and that if you have any other facts or stories on this illustrious drink then by all means leave them in the comments box below.