Qatar is not a dry country. Beer, wines and spirits are available in many of the restaurants and bars of the international hotels. Since checking out of the hotel, we have been dry for the last month.
The supermarkets sell ‘alcohol free’ beer type drinks. These ‘malt beverages’ are a good alternative to beer and I really haven’t missed the real thing. We went out for an ‘Italian’ last night… it would have been nice to have a glass or two of red wine with the meal, but two glasses of chilled, 2012 vintage 7-UP had to substitute.
As the festive season was approaching, I thought it was time to get Liquor Permit which allows me to buy alcohol. The permit is available from the Doha Distribution Company, a small warehouse about 15 minutes away from our flat, and the only place in Doha where alcohol can be purchased.
It took a few minutes to get my licence. A 1,000QR returnable deposit I required. Then I was able to shop.
There was a good selection of drinks, and prices were only a little more than in supermarkets in the UK. I came away with a small supply for the Christmas/New Year.
To clarify, it is wines in the box, not Vodka… I now need to decide how often we will buy wines and beers in 2013… I think it is a good opportunity to live a more healthy, reduced alcohol diet…