"You might think the old rabble-rouser would eschew booze in public, especially expensive fizz. But just last week he demanded flutes of pink champagne during interviews with the Spectator and New Statesman magazines.
'He’s not a massive boozer, but certainly knocks them back when he does drink,’ says a Scots journalist. ‘On the rare occasion I’ve had a drink with him, he literally pours it down his throat. 'And it’s always wine or champers, never anything as common as beer.’
Where this stands with his party’s socialist, puritanical image is anyone’s guess. After all, this was the man who told Alastair Campbell, no stranger to the devil’s buttermilk himself, in a GQ interview last year that he was concerned about Scotland’s image as a ‘nation of drunks’.
Salmond’s political career has been besieged by unsavoury gossip about his lifestyle. He has been dogged by unsubstantiated rumours throughout his leadership of running up huge gambling debts with a bookmaker in Ireland, which he vehemently denies."