Alcohol stoves are great, and there are many plans out there for them. I used to use a woodburning stove but found that, as I expand out of my area, there are a lot of places where any type of wood fire is prohibited, or where wood simply isn't available.
When using "alcohol" to fuel your stove four things are important: ambient temperature, heat generated, cleanliness of the burn, and cost of the fuel.
Ambient Temperature Alcohol stoves, when the temps drop, can be a problem to light, depending on the design of the stove. If you do some research there are plans for stoves that light easily when the temps drop into the 30's. Much research seems to indicate that the problem is the temperature of the alcohol, as well as the type of alcohol used. Keeping the alcohol warm seems to alleviate the problem
Heat generated The amount of heat generated by the fuel is directly related to the percent of alcohol and the type of alcohol. Many people use rubbing alcohol (never less than 90%) from the drug store as it's cheap, but the heat generated isn't the best, so it ends up costing more in the end.
Cleanliness of the burn Unless you like cleaning the soot off of your pots this is also a concern. Many of the alcohols out there will leave some amount of soot, generally the lower the percentage of alcohol the more cleaning you'll have to do.
Cost of the fuel Cost of alcohol (to get a liter of water boiling) ranges anywhere from 9-cents to 24-cents. Big range.
A couple fellows over at fireboxstove.com did some testing and the overall winner was Heet (yellow bottle, not red). It came in relatively cheaply at about 15-cents, leaves no soot, boiled the water in the shortest period of time (~8 min), and works well even in cold temps.
I have been using the yellow heet for a few years now, what I like most about it is that it is readily available so if I fly across country I can always find it at almost any gas station. Also, when I am done backpacking and ready to head home I don't have to figure out what to do with the left over (can't take most fuels on a plane), I just dump it into the gas tank of a friend or a rental.
Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intent of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out, and loudly proclaiming Wow! What a Ride!