We all know who André the Giant is—some know him as one of the world’s greatest professional wrestlers, others as the character Fezzik from The Princess Bride, and others as that huge guy that drank all those bottles of wine then passed out on the floor of the hotel lobby
that one time those times. Wherever you know him from, you can’t deny that he had an unforgettable presence. He stood 7’4” and weighed 540 pounds… the entirety of which was often held together by nothing more than a spandex onesie or a pair of your run-of-the-mill Speedos. To say he could make an impression is quite the understatement and a true testament to the power of elastic.
ANDRÉ THE GIANT – THIRSTY LEGEND
If you thought his performance in the ring was impressive, you should have seen him at the bar (specifically the one where he rang up a $40,000 tab). Countless stories exist about André the Giant’s ability to knock back a few… cases. For crying out loud, the man drank not from a glass, but from a pitcher. Ninety-nine bottles of beer on the wall? Pshh… child’s play! He’s just warming up.
ANDRÉ THE GIANT’S UNBEATABLE DRINKING RECORDS
André admitted in an interview with David Letterman to drinking 117 beers in one sitting but other wrestling witnesses recall the time he downed 156. That’s almost an entire keg of beer. In. One. Night. A modest giant, he is. In what world is drinking only 117 beers modest? Read on…
There’s the time he, according to friend and co-worker Hulk Hogan, consumed 108 12-oz. beers during a 45-minute layover at the Tampa airport. This was clearly before “cutting people off” became a thing. Or maybe the bartender simply feared for his life? Imagine saying ‘no’ to a real-life drunken giant. Hogan also tells of the time André the Giant drank 12 bottles of wine during a 3-hour bus trip. Bottles, I say! Road trips were way more hard-core back in the 1970s. Today, eight ounces of Redbull puts me over the edge.
Even David Letterman was impressed by André’s achievements
André the Giant even concocted his own signature beverage, “The American”, described by The Princess Bride co-star Cary Elwes as “forty ounces of alcohol… usually some combination of hard and soft liquor and whatever else he felt like mixing with it that day.” As an American myself, I’d really like to know where he came up with the name for this creation. Is this what we’re all supposed to be drinking over here? Should I put down this dainty glass of craft beer and man up already? Please advise.
The Princess Bride producer Andy Scheinman recalls the time André the Giant came into work one morning not feeling so great. André told him, “I had a tough night last night. I drank three bottles of cognac and twelve bottles of wine.” When asked if he got sick he simply replied, “No, no… I got a little tipsy though.” I think we can all agree, for us that response would have been, “No, no… I died.”
BIG TREE FALL HARD
As well as André the Giant could hold his liquor, it did eventually hit him. And when André the Giant gets drunk, he gets DEEEE-RUNK. Big tree fall hard, indeed. Cary Elwes remembers another time when André closed down the bar at the hotel where he stayed during their filming. He got up to leave but never made it to the door—instead passing out cold on the floor of the hotel lobby. The manager, hotel security, and even the engineering department were called but nobody could move the unconscious, 500-pound behemoth. They placed a velvet rope around him for safety purposes (nice try) and he didn’t wake until the next morning when the housekeeping staff began vacuuming around him. He got up, straightened his hair, and walked out, probably carrying only a pint-sized hangover.