We all have those things we want that are so special we don’t buy them for ourselves and are too expensive to ask someone else to buy them for us. A bottle of Midleton Barry Crockett was my little luxury that I made sure to taste at Whiskey Fest because chances were highly unlikely I would get a bottle of my own. It’s like a nice painting – we visit them in a museum because we won’t be coming home to Van Gogh’s sunflowers every evening. The whiskey is named for the second-generation master distiller of more than three decades at Midleton, which makes delightful Irish whiskey.
I was shocked to open my card from colleagues at work when I switched jobs within my organization to discover they had bought me a bottle. I wasn’t all that surprised they had gotten me whiskey (my joy of whiskey is no secret – I keep an ice bucket and set of glasses in my desk), but I hadn’t asked for it. And it was the exact bottle I would have asked for.
Rainy Saturday afternoons are becoming my favorite Whiskey Time. This weekend’s found me around the corner in Char No. 4 on Smith Street for a class on Rye.
Our instructor, Allan Roth, referred to it as the “Gateway Whiskey” on the way to the harder bourbon and Scotch. I think maybe I skipped over it for Scotch and have now found myself seeking to know more about it. Apparently, I caught it at a good time since there has been a Rye Revival of sorts, thanks to the resurgence of cocktails and a rise in craft distilleries. But Rye, according to Allan, has deep American roots – the Whiskey Rebellion was over Rye, George Washington was a distiller of Rye, and the American cocktails like Old Fashioneds and Manhattans center around it.