The first time I got properly plastered, as a 12- or perhaps 13-year-old Briton, it was thanks to that exotic foreign import, Mad Dog. Oh, for that sweet, fruited American brew! Here's Hamilton Nolan on the fact that "Foreign Idiots Can't Get Enough of Our Wine", riffing on the LA Times' coverage of California's effortless exporting of it.
No disrespect to people in foreign countries, but they are approximately the world's biggest suckers, when it comes to believing things about America. No, all Americans are not cowboys; we don't all own guns, and work at Disney Land; and we certainly don't make any good wine.
By 14, I had learned to make my own Mad Dog, from Ribena and a bag of sugar and powdered yeast. I remember being quite certain that it tasted better than the real thing, too.