Category:  whisky

Fast food ‘n’ beer

By , July 13, 2011 in Beer, whisky, Wine

Remember when you first heard of beer being sold in fast food restaurants. It was probably from some buddy who’d been told by his buddy whose sister had seen beer for sale in McDonald’s in France. Maybe you didn’t believe it because it just seemed too odd. If you’re like me, you found it curious but didn’t really care. Don’t get me wrong, I like fast food and beer as much as the next guy but there’s really only one way to do it right. You stop at the corner convenience store and grab a sixer or two of whatever beer you’re in the mood for. Then you head to the local burger joint and get two of the least healthy items they have on the menu. Then you go home, strip to your underwear, turn on whatever bad movie marathon the SyFy channel is running that afternoon and dig… Read More »

Canadian Whisky’s Image Issues

By , April 20, 2011 in booze, Bourbon, whiskey, whisky

Did you know that Canadian whisky had an image problem? Neither did I until I spotted this article in the New York Times. As I read the first few sentences, I realized that I have, unconsciously, harbored a dim view of whisky from the north. The article talks about how Canadian whisky is generally viewed as a light mixer without much depth or character; okay for cocktails but kinda weak on it’s own. My unconscious prejudice against the stuff isn’t quite so thoughtful. I just tend to think that it’s not going to be as good. I have no basis for this. One possible explanation is that, living fairly close to Kentucky, I have a strong sense of the tradition of bourbon. I’ve toured some of the distilleries there and dig the history of some of those old distillers. I feel the same way about Scotch, although I’ve never been… Read More »

After the whisky comes…electricity

By , February 28, 2011 in scotch, whiskey, whisky

At first blush it seems unlikely that waste material from making whisky could be used to make electricity. Once the liquor is created, it leaves behind dirty water and spent grain and not much else. As has been done for centuries by brewers and distillers alike, the grain is generally given or sold to local farmers to feed their livestock. The dirty water is just dumped. One distillery, has found a use for that water. Bruichladdich Distillery has spent the last three years working on a project with a company called Biowayste to use that waste water to produce biogas. This can then be used by a generator to produce electricity which will be pumped back into the distillery. It’s kind of cool to think that heretofore useless by-product will now actually go to power the distillery. But, it’s not the first such circular arrangement of benefits for Bruichladdich. Those… Read More »

How to sell Punjabi rocket fuel

By , February 7, 2011 in booze, scotch, whiskey, whisky

The quick answer is to not call it that. In practice, that answer led to £60,000 in monthly profits for some Indian entrepreneurs and, eventually, to a half dozen arrests. Here’s what happened. The criminal masterminds in our little morality play were blending a couple of locally produced whiskeys, Signature and Bagpiper, aka Punjabi rocket fuel. They would then pour their product in discarded Chivas, Glennfiddich and Johnny Walker Black bottles that had been recovered from the trash of upscale hotels that were serving the real thing. With new, fake labels from a local printer, they were able to pass their booze off to a wholesaler and walk away with a nice little profit. Unnamed “whisky experts” mentioned in the story above have taken this opportunity to crow about the “triumph of brand snobbery over taste and knowledge.” Really? The whiskey industry in India has exploded over the last year… Read More »

Protecting Scotch whisky one country at a time

By , December 29, 2010 in Alcohol Law, scotch, whiskey, whisky

As you know, the term whisky is generally reserved for Scotch. Whiskey is the word used for the same sort of stuff made outside of Scotland although this distinction isn’t recognized in all cases. Some regions and countries choose to respect this distinction by writing it into law. Add China, Panama and Vietnam to the list of countries that have decided to formally protect Scotch whisky. The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) announced last week that, after securing protection in China and Panama, the Vietnamese National Office for Intellectual Property agreed to recognize the term as a “geographical indication of origin.” I admit that I’m a bit of a word geek which is why this sort of thing fascinates me. Written English has always been fluid. It’s only been in the last century or so that people have made a serious effort to freeze the written form of this living language… Read More »

Scotch and Water?

Frankly, I know nothing about Joe E. Lewis. But, I can’t argue with his position on water. It just takes up space in the glass that you could fill with more whisky! Whenever someone asks me if I want water with my Scotch, I say I’m thirsty, not dirty. -Joe E. Lewis Part of the November 2010 series of Beer and booze quips, quotes and one-liners

A Case for Scotch

By , November 4, 2010 in alcohol quotes, scotch, whisky

If you want a good quote about pretty much anything but especially alcohol, check in with W.C. Fields. The man knew his one-liners and he definitely knew his booze! Set up another case bartender! The best thing for a case of nerves is a case of Scotch. -W. C. Fields By the way, while we’re talking about Scotch, if you want to taste some good single malt, check out Celebrate the Macallan. The whisky maker is holding tastings at various locations across the US. Just go to the site, give them your address and see if there’s a tasting being held near you. Part of the November 2010 series of Beer and booze quips, quotes and one-liners

Getting drunk on election day

If you’re an American and a registered voter, turn off the damn computer (bookmark this blog, first), get up and get your ass to your polling station. Then, per Ry Cooder’s example, stop at the liquor store or bar on the way home. Hey bartender, what you say I’m gonna get drunk on election day! Want one glass of bourbon, one glass rye Come on, set me up, Joe, don’t pas me by -Ry Cooder Part of the November 2010 series of Beer and booze quips, quotes and one-liners

OMG! The World’s Strongest…oh, who gives a rat’s ass

By , February 24, 2010 in Beer, microdistillery, whisky

For a long time the seasonal bock, Samiclaus, reigned as the world’s strongest beer with it’s now relatively mundane upper-teens alcohol percentage. Then as extreme beers came into vogue, some barley wines and imperial stouts began flirting with the same numbers. Finally, Sam Adams’s Uptopia galloped past with numbers that reached the twenties. Without distillation, the process of removing water in order to raise the alcohol percentage, this seemed and still seems like about as far as brewers can push things. But that didn’t stop some brewers, whose eyes are perhaps fixed a little too firmly on the numbers, from trying to win the crown as brewers of the world’s strongest beer. The latest holder of that title is BrewDog in Scotland. Now, don’t get me wrong. I like BrewDog. I’ve enjoyed the few beers made by them that I’ve been able to try and I like their approach of… Read More »

St. Patrick’s Day is Coming

By , February 17, 2010 in Beer, st. patrick's day, whiskey, whisky

If you are a days-that-end-in-y kind of drinker like I am, then you probably look forward to St. Patrick’s Day with just as much anticipation as I do. The patriotic crowd can have their Fourth of July, the tree-huggers can have their Arbor Day, the glutens can have their Thanksgiving, the religious folks can have their Easter, the weekend partiers can have their New Years Eve and everyone else can have their Christmas. I’ve got my St. Patrick’s Day and my whiskey and my stout; I’m happy. Why am I talking to you about this now? Well, the day is exactly one month from today, giving you four weeks to get your shit together and order a t-shirt or, better yet a full on St. Paddy’s day costume like this one so you can celebrate in style. Remember last year? You meant to pick up a shirt or hat showing… Read More »