The only absolutely honest name for alcohol. Although "yeast piss" comes in a really close second. Calling alcohol "ardent spirits" might qualify the term as an honest name, since it seems to suggest that the drinkers of ardent spirits are subject to a kind of demonic possession.
In simplest terms, alcohol is nothing more or less than what yeast excrete after digesting a meal. Call it yeast urine, call it a yeast bowel movement, it's still excrement.
Among the many, many fanciful names that Madison Avenue has dreamed up to disguise the bald fact that alcohol is nothing more than yeast excrement are "Bacardi", "Captain Morgan", "Jack Daniels", "Absolut", "Southern Comfort", "Budweiser", "Coors", "Yuengling", "Schlitz", "Pabst", "Rolling Rock", and "Iron City". And that "high-toned" name "single malt whiskey" hides the real truth: "single malt" yeasts, like poor little veal calves, are locked up in a pitch-black room and force-fed a single kind of grain. The end product, of course, is single-malt excrement.
The least honest name for alcohol is "aqua vitae", which means "water of life". (From the Latin words aqua "water" -- and vitae "of life").
'Like everybody else in the cocktail lounge, he was softening his brain with alcohol. This was a substance produced by a tiny creature called yeast. Yeast organisms ate sugar and excreted alcohol. They killed themselves by destroying their own environment with yeast shit.
'Kilgore Trout once wrote a short story which was a dialogue between two pieces of yeast. They were discussing the possible purposes of life as they ate sugar and suffocated in their own excrement. Because of their limited intelligence, they never came close to guessing that they were making champagne. . . .
'Adapting to chaos there in the cocktail lounge, I now had Bonnie MacMahon, bring more yeast excrement to Beatrice Keedsler and Karabekian. Karabekian's drink was a Beefeater's dry martini with a twist of lemon peel, so Bonnie said to him, "Breakfast of Champions."
' "That's what you said when you brought me my first martini," said Karabekian.
' "I say that every time I give anybody a martini," said Bonnie. . . .
. . . ' Her husband, meanwhile, was at home watching professional golfers on television, and getting smashed on yeast excrement.'
-- From Kurt Vonnegut's 1973 novel Breakfast of Champions, Chapter 19 (pages 208 - 211).
1973 KURT VONNEGUT, JR. Breakfast of Champions, or, Goodbye Blue Monday.