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Drink You Under The Table (Meta)

· By benchen71 · Published 3 months ago

Meta Prompt
The answer to the meta is an alcoholic drink (but not a cocktail)
Occasionally I come up with an idea for a meta which should probably be left in that notebook of ideas. But, no, I had some time; I wanted to construct a meta; so I forced it into a grid, and here we are! There are some rough spots in this grid, let me get that off my chest right at the outset. But I've tried to compensate you with some fun cluing. Alternatively, just reveal the grid and get stuck into the meta, the answer to which is an alcoholic drink (but not a cocktail). Answer & explanation:
Check out the "Rejected (Non-meta) MOAT Pack" here: US$5 gets you 10 themed crosswords, most of which were rejected by one crossword publisher or another. Were those editors right to reject them? You be the judge!
Checking for previous play data...

Leaderboard (updated hourly)

  • Hector solved at 5:45 on 1/4/2023
  • Laura M solved at 6:43 on 1/4/2023
  • Schmeel solved at 10:22 on 1/4/2023
  • Meg solved at 13:42 on 1/4/2023
  • Cindy Weatherman solved at 13:45 on 1/4/2023
  • Darth solved at 14:04 on 1/4/2023
  • dplass solved at 14:29 on 1/4/2023
  • boharr solved at 15:20 on 1/4/2023
  • Ergcat solved at 15:55 on 1/4/2023
  • rjy solved at 16:11 on 1/4/2023
  • DIS solved at 16:32 on 1/4/2023
  • Carolyn solved at 17:11 on 1/4/2023
  • whimsy solved at 18:47 on 1/4/2023
  • MrTheHan solved at 19:57 on 1/4/2023
  • Tom Wilson solved at 20:32 on 1/4/2023
  • Qmark solved at 20:33 on 1/4/2023
  • CPJohnson solved at 20:48 on 1/4/2023
  • markhr solved at 21:53 on 1/4/2023
  • Bbaack solved at 23:57 on 1/4/2023
  • lbray53 solved at 0:00 on 1/5/2023
  • Cindy Heisler solved at 0:16 on 1/5/2023
  • BarbaraK solved at 1:12 on 1/5/2023
  • SJMcK solved at 2:25 on 1/5/2023
  • Tyrpmom solved at 3:44 on 1/5/2023
  • Bird Lives solved at 4:11 on 1/5/2023
  • I K Snamhcok solved at 4:33 on 1/5/2023
  • DrTom solved at 14:19 on 1/5/2023
  • edestlin solved at 20:18 on 1/5/2023
  • MatthewL solved at 20:41 on 1/5/2023
  • ReB solved at 21:48 on 1/5/2023
  • ChrisCross solved at 2:09 on 1/6/2023
  • SeamusOL solved at 4:06 on 1/6/2023
  • HeadinHome solved at 20:05 on 1/6/2023
  • Mwoychick solved at 22:20 on 1/6/2023
  • Teamdoubletow solved at 0:34 on 1/7/2023
  • woozy solved at 0:49 on 1/7/2023
  • KayW solved at 0:55 on 1/7/2023
  • jbird solved at 4:41 on 1/7/2023
  • Dow Jones solved at 7:11 on 1/7/2023
  • DCBilly solved at 14:50 on 1/7/2023
  • Dave C solved at 15:40 on 1/7/2023
  • Johnny Luau solved at 16:59 on 1/7/2023
  • ajk solved at 19:48 on 1/7/2023
  • Darrell solved at 23:43 on 1/7/2023
  • Jaclyn solved at 0:28 on 1/8/2023
  • Gutman solved at 19:00 on 1/8/2023
  • kymike solved at 21:01 on 1/8/2023


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  • Laura M 🤓14:16 · 3 months ago
    I usually don't love forced grid fill, but I literally laughed out loud at 6D
    6DJust put "CRORF" in the grid and we will never speak of this again[-----]
    • benchen71 constructor · 3 months ago
      It made me smile, too, so I left it in! ;-)
      • whimsy 15:41 · 3 months ago
        Me too!
        • HeadinHome 🤓3:04 · 3 months ago
          me too .. totally forgive the rule breaking when clue are so funny.
        • Darth 🤓14:11 · 3 months ago
          Elementary, my dear benchen71. At least you DID warn us about the grid! lol
          • dplass 6:57 · 3 months ago
            At first I was like, what the heck? But now, I really like this meta, despite the horrid fill. (Maybe I like it because I got it?)
            • benchen71 constructor · 3 months ago
              That always helps!
            • Meg 2s · 3 months ago
              It occurred to me while solving that I am not bothered by 2-letter entries anymore. I kinda like the wacky clueing, too. Evolution is the slow grinding away of rigidity…….or a lowering of standards. Glass half full imo.
              • boharr 3s · 3 months ago
                Look! No grid needed.
                • Ergcat 16:26 · 3 months ago
                  Love me a clever Periodic Table puzzle! Thank you, Ben!
                  • rjy 2s · 3 months ago
                    Stumbled a bit on this since I thought Rutherfordium was RU, giving me IOS WINE which is a wine that does exist out there - but only if you have the internet to search for it. Regrouped and crorf’ed my way to the finish line
                    • rjy 2s · 3 months ago
                      ... and just now realized that my RU/RF error had me miss the red herring that was so cleverly planted... very diabolical, that!
                    • Carolyn 3s · 3 months ago
                      Very nice! Thanks
                      • whimsy 15:41 · 3 months ago
                        This is my kind of grid! -- literally, the kind I tend to make because of my inadequacies. But I think they can be plenty fun! Thanks, Ben!
                        • Qmark 6s · 3 months ago
                          As a former chemistry professor, I always enjoy a good periodic puzzle. After finding the "cocktail" answer, I'll admit it I had to let things sit for awhile before seeing the path to the real answer. Thanks Ben!
                          • Tom Wilson 🤓9:25 · 3 months ago
                            Such a fun solve, even if it DID take me a while. On to Happy Hour, with the swagger of success.
                            • markhr 🤓6:20 · 3 months ago
                              Faked me out for a bit, then I finally caught on. Nice one, Ben.
                              • lbray53 3s · 3 months ago
                                Great puzzle even though I fell into the trap. You led us there but clearly told us not to submit that cocktail.
                                I tried hightlighting every single element symbol, and when that was too confusing to figure out every two-letter symbol. I even tried highlighting just the symbols in the themers. I finally considered the title more literally.
                                Very nice.
                                • Bbaack 27:51 · 3 months ago
                                  I loved finding both answers. Make mine a double!
                                  • Cindy Heisler 2s · 3 months ago
                                    I has no problem with the grid and I loved your clues. It did take me a bit to get the meta, though. Nice one, Ben!!
                                    • SJMcK 12:14 · 3 months ago
                                    • I K Snamhcok 1s · 3 months ago
                                      N’ice! (Sorry, I was really staring for a pun there.) I was in RED ‘ERRING land for quite some time before getting the aha. Thanks, Ben!
                                      • DrTom 25:03 · 3 months ago
                                        DOH - VERY clever misdirection. I looked all over the place for letters and finally it hit me - look where he told you. I had a problem because of the fact that I know about CHERRY HEERING a liquor, RED HERRING BEER and of course the RED HERRING COCKTAIL. I did not find the H for HERRING because I was trying to use the black square as a space. Why I did not tumble to the fact that you were literally telling us that the answer we got was wrong I'll never know, obviously too task oriented. Thanks for the workout.
                                        • ReB 5s · 3 months ago
                                          I identified early on two possible mechanisms based on the title phrase "Under The [Periodic] Table". The in-grid mechanism led to the RED HERRING. The second mechanism worked after I got a technical update from the author to fill in the hole in my solution.
                                          I enjoyed the cluing, especially 22A
                                          22ANew Zealand physicist after which Rutherfordium is named, Ernest ___ (I didn't want you to have to resort to Google for all the themers)[----------]
                                          , which reminded me of the classic prize question: "Who is buried in Grant's Tomb?"
                                          • ChrisCross 🤓8:00 · 3 months ago
                                            Including in a separate comment because it's a slightly long anecdote. Your RED HERRING gave me a flashback to when I was working on a digital treasure hunt puzzle. Toward the end was a crude bitmap image with some riddles. I noticed under one of the pieces of clipart that the pixels were weirdly asymmetric. After flipping the image and interpreting it as Morse code, I got "rubeum allec" - latin for red herring. :/ I was much more annoyed with that one.
                                            • ChrisCross 🤓8:00 · 3 months ago
                                              So glad you decided not to just leave this as an idea. The theme entries were clever. I was so proud of myself for thinking of the mechanism only to get RED HERRING. But, I was convinced and loved that mechanism so much that I couldn't let go. After a while it finally dawned on me to actually use the periodic table. Normally, I wouldn't like metas that don't rely much at all on the grid. But in this case the RED HERRING was actually more of a clue I was in the right direction, so I found this to be a really rewarding meta. I feel like you have a knack for creating metas that gently lead one's cognition in the right direction.
                                              • benchen71 constructor · 3 months ago
                                                Thanks so much! I really enjoy creating (and solving!) metas. And there are lots more to come!
                                              • HeadinHome 🤓3:04 · 3 months ago
                                                Ice wine? is that a thing? I was of course stuck on the red herring RED HERRING for days . The idea of looking up the actual table came to me in my sleep I think. That was pretty clever, Ben!
                                                • benchen71 constructor · 3 months ago
                                                  Ice wine is delicious! You have to pick and crush the grapes when they are somewhat frozen. It makes the juice sweeter because there's less water than usual.
                                                  • woozy 14:17 · 3 months ago
                                                    It's a big thing in Newfoundland and Ontario. It's not bad but it's funny the guy from Ontario singing its praises was trying very hard to convince himself that ice wine was as big a thing world-wide as the other wine (you know, not-ice...) and pretending the concept that those of us from lower latitudes not having ever heard of it simply was inconceivable. He didn't go as far as insisting one must refer to non-ice wine as hot wine because the world interprets "wine" as equally likely to refer to ice wine but he almost went that far.
                                                    Going wine tasting in Newfoundland was ... interesting... (Still have some of that cloudberry and choke apple dessert wine in the basement somewhere ...)
                                                • Mwoychick 🤓19:24 · 3 months ago
                                                  Thanks, Ben - I finally got it with a pointer to a particular periodic table
                                                  • benchen71 constructor · 3 months ago
                                                    Yes, that is a serious problem with this puzzle. Check out the answer reveal for my discussion on this.
                                                  • Teamdoubletow 6s · 3 months ago
                                                    4th times a charm... We were doing everything right except someone was really careless looking at the periodic table and came up with iOS wine ... Apple wine that's a thing... Right? Thanks for the fun puzzle.
                                                    • KayW 7:57 · 3 months ago
                                                      LOL. I needed the nudges to find the REAL answer. But loved the RED HERRING. I had no idea that was actually a cocktail! Thanks Ben
                                                      • woozy 14:17 · 3 months ago
                                                        No fair. I never heard of the thing I was supposed to fall for! :)
                                                        I usually use this periodic table:
                                                        So ILA WINE, anyone?
                                                        • Dave C 2s · 3 months ago
                                                          I needed the last nudge. I saw the five elements and looked at the elements numerically below (and above), but failed to look at the actual table - doh.
                                                          • kymike 3s · 3 months ago
                                                            So, a meta that can be solved without filling in one item on the grid. Not a fan. I don't think that this really meets the definition of a meta puzzle as the answer does not come from within. However, brilliant puzzle!
                                                            • benchen71 constructor · 3 months ago
                                                              I would argue that with meta puzzles there are no hard and fast rules! Glad you still enjoyed it, though. :D
                                                            Statistical tool used to check a null hypothesis (I've used this clue before so hopefully you remember the answer)
                                                            1. 1A
                                                              Statistical tool used to check a null hypothesis (I've used this clue before so hopefully you remember the answer)
                                                            2. 6A
                                                              CBS forensic drama
                                                            3. 9A
                                                              Double-reed instrument
                                                            4. 13A
                                                              "Charlie's Angels" actress, ___ Fawcett
                                                            5. 14A
                                                              Colour of Bromine when in liquid form
                                                            6. 16A
                                                              Political refugee
                                                            7. 17A
                                                              One way to buy things (but don't forget to make those repayments!)
                                                            8. 18A
                                                              Small amount
                                                            9. 19A
                                                              Irresolvable internal contradiction, such as when a Cretan says that all Cretans are liars
                                                            10. 21A
                                                              Ob-___ (MD for women)
                                                            11. 22A
                                                              New Zealand physicist after which Rutherfordium is named, Ernest ___ (I didn't want you to have to resort to Google for all the themers)
                                                            12. 25A
                                                              Dept. of Justice heads
                                                            13. 27A
                                                              "So unfortunate!"
                                                            14. 28A
                                                              Southern United States paramilitary terrorist groups active in the late 19th century (from which I've removed all of the vowels just because)
                                                            15. 30A
                                                              Prefix meaning "new"
                                                            16. 31A
                                                              46 across
                                                              46A"Umbrella" singer[-------]
                                                              , to fans
                                                            17. 33A
                                                              Found by chance
                                                            18. 34A
                                                              Source of citric acid, which reacts with Molybdenum (among other elements)
                                                            19. 37A
                                                              Early Britons
                                                            20. 42A
                                                              Historical period
                                                            21. 43A
                                                              Lawyers' org.
                                                            22. 46A
                                                              "Umbrella" singer
                                                            23. 49A
                                                              Answered an invitation
                                                            24. 51A
                                                              Part of "Old MacDonald Had A Farm"
                                                            25. 52A
                                                              Covered with oil (but not Bromine since that's very reactive)
                                                            26. 54A
                                                              Scout's brother in "To Kill a Mockingbird"
                                                            27. 56A
                                                              Comes up
                                                            28. 57A
                                                              Garment border
                                                            29. 59A
                                                              Nothing to suggest, as foul play
                                                            30. 61A
                                                              Class of pain-killing drugs (abbr.)
                                                            31. 63A
                                                              Helium, for example (just think extremely general!)
                                                            32. 64A
                                                              Fashionable Klein
                                                            33. 65A
                                                              When to start racing
                                                            34. 66A
                                                              Town in the Netherlands located halfway between Arnhem and Utrecht
                                                            35. 67A
                                                              Comic, ___ DeGeneres
                                                            1. 1D
                                                              South American marmoset
                                                            2. 2D
                                                              Hunger Games participant
                                                            3. 3D
                                                              Unit of work
                                                            4. 4D
                                                              Actresses Bernhardt and Chalke
                                                            5. 5D
                                                              Jack Sparrow's ship, for short
                                                            6. 6D
                                                              Just put "CRORF
                                                              6DJust put "CRORF" in the grid and we will never speak of this again[-----]
                                                              " in the grid and we will never speak of this again
                                                            7. 7D
                                                              Discount recipient, often
                                                            8. 8D
                                                              Photo-bearing document, often
                                                            9. 9D
                                                              US state, whose capital is Salem
                                                            10. 10D
                                                              Tattoos, for instance
                                                            11. 11D
                                                              Because of
                                                            12. 12D
                                                              Tolkien tree creature
                                                            13. 13D
                                                              Served dinner to
                                                            14. 15D
                                                              Title for a friar (abbr.)
                                                            15. 20D
                                                              Do-___ situation
                                                            16. 23D
                                                              General ___'s chicken
                                                            17. 24D
                                                              High-speed connection, for short
                                                            18. 26D
                                                              Tax form info
                                                            19. 29D
                                                              "Hello" (even more briefly)
                                                            20. 32D
                                                              Gramophone record label (abbr.) but instead of "voice" it's "echo" (just go with it)
                                                            21. 35D
                                                              Perfumery ingredient with the common name of Queen Elizabeth Root
                                                            22. 36D
                                                            23. 37D
                                                              Opposite of post-
                                                            24. 38D
                                                              Book before Jude
                                                            25. 39D
                                                              7th letter of the alphabet made entirely of Gruyere?
                                                            26. 40D
                                                              "Thanks!" (even more briefly)
                                                            27. 41D
                                                              NBC sketch show
                                                            28. 43D
                                                            29. 44D
                                                              Queen's domain?
                                                            30. 45D
                                                              Included as a bonus
                                                            31. 47D
                                                              Subtle distinction
                                                            32. 48D
                                                            33. 50D
                                                              Medieval tenant
                                                            34. 53D
                                                              Rummage (through)
                                                            35. 55D
                                                              Antenna technology (multiple input, multiple output; you do the math!)
                                                            36. 58D
                                                              Internet portal from Bill Gates' company
                                                            37. 59D
                                                              Sgt. or cpl.
                                                            38. 60D
                                                              Boy toy, ___ Joe
                                                            39. 62D