Monday, June 23, 2003

Snobbing on Bourbon

Over the past couple of years, I've become a full-time Bourbon drinker (in the sense that I always drink Bourbon when I'm out - not in the sense that I drink it constantly).

Used to be I drank Bourbon during college football season and beer during those very sad other months when no football is played, but I came to realize that my friend Tom (an expert drinker) is right that beer serves to slow you down and fill you up too much. So now it's Bourbon - preferably Maker's Mark - when I'm out.

This evening I was cruising a site that sells Bourbon online (I can't remember exactly what brought me there - it was one of those click-stream of consciousness things), and I came across this description of W.L. Weller Wheated Whiskey (19 year):

"Antique amber color with mature aromas rich in wood spices (vanilla, cinnamon, teaberry), and dates, with a hint of leather and sweet corn. Beginning with molasses and toffee notes, the soothing taste evolves to dried fruit, ultimately becoming spicy, with notes of vanilla and freshly ground pepper. Long smooth finish includes notes of oak and leather."

Do what? Tastes like leather and corn?

I'd really like to meet the wuss writer for "Malt Advocate" magazine who penned that review. Pretty boys who drink fine wine or single-malt Scotch should describe their alcohol like that, but not Bourbon drinkers.

In fairness, this was a $103 bottle of Bourbon. But I say leave Bourbon for us uncivilized Southerners and stop waxing so poetically about "notes of vanilla" and how the taste "evolves to dried fruit."

And if these flowery words were reserved for $100 bottles, that would be one thing. But here's the description of Old Granddad ($18.96):

"Notes of pecan pie, marmalade, sweet pipe tobacco, toffee. Viscous texture. Lovely buttery feel on the palate showcasing rich, tangy fruit and deep baked-pie flavors. Quite lush and broad in the finish."

If I heard a guy at the Flat Iron say "lovely buttery feel on the palate ..." about Old Granddad, I'd have to show him the door.

Even Wild Turkey 101 Proof garners this wussified review:

"Subdued wood and mineral aromas. A lean attack leads to a medium-bodied palate. Firm, drying finish. Not exactly refined, but fiery and flavorful with a decided burn."

You bet your ass there's a "decided burn", Pierre.


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