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What is Hairy Buffalo Punch?

Mary McMahon
By
Updated May 16, 2024
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Hairy Buffalo punch is a type of punch which is made by mixing alcohol, fruit, and fruit juices. Typically it is made in large volumes for big social gatherings, and the ingredients are incredibly varied. Essentially one's imagination is the only limit when assembling Hairy Buffalo punch, although one may want to consider the interactions between various ingredients before adding them willy-nilly.

This formidable punch goes by a number of alternate names, including Jungle Juice, PJ, hunch punch, hooch, and spodi; many more names can be found in various regional dialects. In all case, the common factor of this punch is a natural sweetness from the fruit and juices which tends to conceal the alcohol content, and a very high alcohol content due to the use of an assortment of high-proof alcohols. Punch can be a dangerous offering at a party when people are not aware of how much alcohol it contains, so caution is advised when making and serving punches, especially to people who may be driving.

To make Hairy Buffalo, people start by cutting up fruits of choice. Pineapples are common, although any sort of fruit can be used. The cut fruit is deposited into a large container, and alcohol is poured over it. Whiskey, tequila, rum, vodka, and pure grain alcohol can all be used, although a combination of all five might be a bit much. The fruit is allowed to soak in the alcohol overnight to absorb it before fruit juices like cranberry, orange, apple, and pineapple, along with punch, are added to dilute the mixture.

Once the Hairy Buffalo punch has been constructed, there are a number of ways to serve it. Some people take out the fruit, allowing party guests to eat it separately while serving the liquid straight or using it as a mixer in drinks. Other people like to ladle the punch and the fruit out together; traditionally, people drink a cup of Hairy Buffalo punch and then eat the fruit. Cocktail picks may be handy to have around if the punch is being served with the fruit, so that people can spear the fruit to extract it easily from their glasses.

As with all alcoholic beverages, punch should be consumed in moderation. If you are hosting a gathering with Hairy Buffalo punch, you may want to have food on offer to ensure that people do not drink with an empty stomach, and you may want to designate a bartender to ladle out servings, ensuring that no one overindulges.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a DelightedCooking researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
By HalfStack — On Jun 29, 2011

One good thing about these punches is the fruit. A lot of nutritionists and doctors will tell you that if you must drink, you should mix your drinks with fruit instead of soda. They say that reduces the hangover the next day. At least when you mix alcohol and fruit, you are getting some nutrition with your drinks. I guess that would be the lesser of evils.

By TheXx — On Jun 28, 2011

@CharlieB, You're right. Been there, done that, got the stained t-shirt. You have to watch out for alcohol toxicity when drinking some of these super hairy fruit punches. Alcohol toxicity at best can lead to a hangover; at worst, it can lead to death. The grain alcohol is so strong that by the time it hits you hard, it's too late and you can't take it back. Parties are cool and fun, just be careful with punches and any drink. Avoid those booze slamming contests.

By tigers88 — On Jun 26, 2011

I don't recommend that anyone try this, but I had one particularly memorable night when we used wine instead of fruit juices to make our hairy buffalo punch. The flavor was a lot worse and the drink had a real bite but it still went down pretty easily. The obvious happened and everyone got extremely drunk, bad drunk. It was almost impossible not to be with that much booze in the mix. The next day was terrible and I have always regretted that terrible punch recipe. Learn from my mistakes, just use juice.

By summing — On Jun 25, 2011

I probably drank more jungle juice in college than I did water. It seemed to be at almost every party and there were so many ways to make it that you never got sick of drinking it. It got me into trouble on more than one occasion but it also lead to a lot of great nights. I can't really touch the stuff these days, but I smile when I think about how much of this stuff must be sloshing around on campus even today

By CharlieB — On Jun 25, 2011

This is not just a punch recipe, it is a recipe for disaster. Amateur drinkers should be very careful with a cocktail like this. Hard liquor can really sneak up on you, especially if you are not used to drinking it. You will feel fine one minute, and the next minute, your world starts spinning around and your paying a visit to the great white throne. But, hey, if you know what you are doing, have a good, safe time.

By ginSoul — On Jun 25, 2011

@omgnotagain – That sounds like the start of a great party! I don’t make quite that much punch for my family’s yearly Christmas party, obviously, but I would like to share my secrets for a super tasty rum punch recipe.

Since it’s a Christmas hairy punch, I use eggnog spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, and cloves. I add them at the same time I add the alcohol. I also use fruits that we usually associate with the holiday season, like apples, cranberries, and tangerines.

I let the punch sit in the fridge for two days so the spices permeate the fruit really well. Then I sprinkle the fruit pieces with powdered sugar and serve them as snacks with the punch. It’s so delicious, and my family raves about it every year.

By omgnotagain — On Jun 25, 2011

On my birthday every year, I host a huge party and serve hairy buffalo punch. It’s awesome I don’t make it exactly the way the article says to. I literally invite everyone I know to my birthday party, so I make a lot of punch. I buy a new 45 gallon plastic trashcan and sanitize it, and it becomes my punch bowl.

The day before my party, I put ice in the trash can, and then I add all the alcohol, sliced fruit, and fruit juice at the same time.

That’s the secret to making a huge container of punch. You shouldn’t add the alcohol by itself, like the article says, because it might settle at the bottom of the trash can. If that happens, some of the punch won’t have any alcohol in it, and the rest will be nearly all alcohol.

Anyway, I put everything in the can and stir it really well, and then I sit it in my garage until the party starts. You have to put the mixture in a cool place, but it’s hard to find a refrigerator that can hold a 45 gallon trash can. Luckily for me (and my party guests) my birthday is in December and we live near the mountains, so it’s usually cold enough for me to leave the can in my garage.

When it’s party time, the flavors have had a chance to mingle with each other, and that’s some devilishly good punch!

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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