When you find out you’re having a baby, everyone showers you with diapers and cute onesies. But, what they really should be buying you is booze. Parenting is a tough gig. It requires tons of patience, lots of manual labor, and the occasional (okay, daily) escape from reality via alcohol.
Sommeliers put a lot of work into figuring out which wine pairs best with your fancy pork chop or your medium-rare steak. But wine is referred to as “mommy juice” for a reason. What we really need is a guide for the wines that pair best with babies and toddlers being gigantic fucking jerks. That’s why I put together this extremely un-scientific list to help my fellow parents figure out how to drink away their stress like professionals.
Here, 10 delicious wines that perfectly complement all of your child’s shittiest behavior.
1. Taking snack time into their own hands.
Pairs with: Pinot noir
You told them to wait until you got off the phone with your boss and could help them spread the peanut butter on the toast, but do they listen? Of course not. They barely even understand words. This is your life now, and that’s a bitter pill to swallow, which is why you should wash it down with something delicate and smooth, like several bottles of Pinot Noir.
2. Destroying the most expensive thing you own—and not being the least bit sorry for it.
Pairs with: Sauvignon blanc
You thought you could have nice things, but you were dead fucking wrong. Once you have a kid, it’s only a matter of time before your white couch is covered in urine, and you’ve got Scotch tape holding your iPhone together. It hurts falling down from your lofty aspirations. Cushion the blow with a sauvignon blanc. It’s so earthy and bright, it will make the cold smack of reality seem almost pleasant.
3. Avoiding nap time by acting like the biggest asshole you’ve ever met.
Pairs with: Pinot grigio
You’d rather opt for whiskey, I know, but since nap time takes place at, like, noon, maybe go for a pinot grigio instead. It’s perfect for day drinking, because it’s light and refreshing, plus it’ll help take the edge off without turning you into Drunk Uncle from Saturday Night Live. It’s hard to reprimand kids when you’re slurring. Remember that.
4. Throwing a tantrum in the grocery store because you bought the wrong cereal.
Pairs with: Zinfandel
You’re already at the grocery store, so grab a cheap Zinfandel on your way out. It’s got a really high alcohol content, which you need after a budget-busting Target excursion with a bossy threenager in tow. Plus, it’s crisp, fruity flavor pairs well with hot tears—both yours and your child’s.
5. Having a bathroom accident in the worst possible place.
Pairs with: Rosé
Say it with me: rosé all day. You just cleaned up shit. The last thing you need is some complex, snobby wine that demands to be sipped. Stick a bottle in the freezer, clean up the mess, wash your hands, and then chug. No one will judge you—unless you post pictures of the poop on Facebook. Then, we’ll totally unfollow you.
6. Refusing to eat the $7 kid’s meal they begged for at a restaurant.
Pairs with: Chardonnay
Chardonnay is considered the most popular white wine on earth. Taking kids to restaurants is considered the most popular child-rearing experience that makes parents wish they’d used a condom. It’s basically a match made in heaven.
7. Decorating (and traumatizing) the family pets.
Pairs with: Merlot
When your Google search history includes things like, “how to get Sharpie off a dog,” or “how to un-glitter a cat,” it’s time to bust out the merlot. It’s got the robust flavor you love from a good red, but also packs enough fruitiness to go down nice and easy. Put simply, you can gulp it like a 4-year-old chugs a juice box, and that’s exactly what you need before you try to wipe glue off a St. Bernard.
8. Ruining your 5 minutes of weekly alone time by starting a fight with a sibling.
Pairs with: Cabernet sauvignon
You can’t get any peace and quiet, you live in a shit-hole, and your life is in shambles. If you’re going to have a drink, it better be something that makes you feel fancy. Go for a cab. It’s dark and decadent, it’s been called the King of Red Wines, and it’ll make you forget for a few minutes that it’s your kids who are actually in charge.
9. Destroying your cutest (and cleanest) outfit.
Pairs with: Riesling
You were trying to look like a cool mom, but now your trendy off-the-shoulder sweater is covered in vomit. It happens to the best of us, usually several times a day. Since you’ve already spent enough time cleaning up sour-smelling bodily fluids, you should drink something sweet and flowery. Kick back with a chilled riesling while you wait for the washing machine to do its thing.
10. They’re way too fucking quiet and have possibly escaped.
Pairs with: Bordeaux
This one is complicated. On one hand, the kids are gone, and it’s finally silent. On the other hand, they could be playing in traffic, taking drug-laced candy from strangers, or starting a fire in the bathroom trash can. In this case, go for a Bordeaux. It’s a blend of grape varieties to match your mixed emotions about this situation. Also, you should probably the find the kids before you pop that bottle, but that’s only a suggestion.