Thursday, December 2, 2010


I've never been much of a whiskey drinker, or any "hard liquor" for that matter. Oh, I had a fling with Scotch when I was barely, or maybe not even, old enough to drink legally. And I went through a Tequila period during my first marriage, mostly due to Jimmy Buffet's "Margaritaville", I think. And my flirtation with Rum was Jimmy's fault, too, since every boater needs "boat drinks" at the end of the day. And of course St. Patrick's Day calls for an Irish whiskey (Bushmill is my preferred choice) to celebrate the occasion. But beer has always been my adult beverage of preference - I switch brands depending on my mood and budget, but basically any beer will do. Red wine is good, too - not the fancy "vintage" stuff, just a nice, smooth table wine, and if I'm listening to Jerry Jeff Walker, a Sangria seems appropriate. Whiskey though, not so much.

Until a couple of years ago (more or less) when I read an article in a magazine about good cheap booze; or maybe cheap good booze - I'm not sure which it was. Either way, it mentioned bourbon. I've probably had bourbon once or twice in my life (Wild Turkey comes to mind) but this article sang the praises of a brand I'd never heard of - Evan Williams. It spoke in glowing (bourbon does give you a glow) terms of it's taste and complexity, and lots of other stuff I didn't understand, and compared it favorably to much pricier brands. Well I love a bargain, so the next time I found myself in the booze aisle at Shaw's I looked for it, and sure enough - there it was for under twelve bucks for a fifth. Everything else was much more expensive and I knew, because I had read it in a magazine, the this stuff was good (and cheap), so I bought some.

Have you ever heard the song, "God's own drunk"? It's about a still and the whiskey it produces, and there's a man tending the still, and there's a bear and - well, if you've heard the song you know what I'm talking about and if you haven't, you just wouldn't understand. But when I took my first sip of Evan Williams bourbon, that song came to mind and I knew exactly what it meant. That Kentucky bourbon danced on my tongue and it warmed the back of my throat and then I felt it all the way down to my belly. And I fell in love, and I knew I had a new mistress.

Now I've had enough experience with women and booze to know that you have to treat them both with respect and enjoy them in moderation. But I'm pretty sure that I've found the whiskey that I'm going to stick with for the rest of my life; as for that woman, well I guess she's still out there waiting to be discovered.

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