My first burner was an alcohol stove; it was a little bunsen burner that came with a real chemistry set when I was 8yo. I say real because it had actual chemicals that could kill you if you didn’t follow the instructions. I loved using the burner
to do the experiments in the kit, maintaining the wick, refilling or decanting the fuel.
But for some reason this alco-stove affection did not follow me to adulthood. Alcohol fuel is expensive and bulky for any given BTU. It does have a few upsides, though:
- spilled fuel does not stink and evaporates quickly
- fuel can be found in many places albeit at significant markup. Denatured alcohol (ethanol adulterated with poison) and HEET (the fuel line de-icing stuff in the automotive section. Methanol) are best suited.