Sunday, October 13, 2013

Baby Get Your Shine On...Shine On!

Obviously too wet and muddy to decorate Bella's yard, Sister Sister-in-law Cindy and I spent the better part of the morning hanging linens to dry and staging inside.

Outside staging was minimal at best. The rain had eased though it was forecast to be spotty showers all day. Today would be a busy day away from the trailer park, and Bella was slap woe need for her to get all gussied up until just before happy hour and the evening festivities.

Rain makes corn, corn makes whiskey, whiskey makes a Sister...mighty ------ or some shet like that. This may be the only reason I like rain.
Note: All bourbons are whiskey, but not all whiskeys are bourbon. I know, right?! After morning grub, we would hit the Kentucky Bourbon Trail to learn there is more to Bourbon than just mixing it with Coke and sneaking it into high school football games. I think that's what my girlfriends used to do. I wouldn't know.


We bellied up to a neighboring trailer for a cup of Arbuckle's and breakfast by a couple of the best damn cooks as ever throwed dishwater under a chuck wagon. Much obliged, fellow Sisters, for feeling sorry for us with no picnic table to eat our breakfast. Actually, we had no food to eat either, ha. oops.

Afterwards, we packed into a 15-passenger van for a  tour of three of the seven Bourbon distilleries listed on the map:  Heaven Hill, Jim Beam, and Maker's Mark. It was dreadfully cold, and the thought of a couple shots of whiskey sounded mighty good. With the real Thelma & Louise at the wheel, Sister Louise pointed the tongue north and moved us out.

First stop, Heaven Hill Distilleries...


Sister Sister-in-law Cindy with her nose in the whiskey barrel. *

After the tour, we sampled some of Heaven Hill's finest:  Elijah Craig and Evan Williams to name a few. 
From the Kentucky Distillers' Association website:  Setting up a tasting is easy. All you need is glassware, some pure water – and, of course, Bourbon. Try to use tulip-stemmed nosing glasses {*not your nose in the barrel, Cindy!} (if they’re available) or a rocks glass. Always have a glass of water and salt-free crackers on hand to refresh your palate between sips. You’ll be sampling Bourbon at full-strength, so the last point is important. Fill each glass with one ounce of Bourbon and you’re ready to go.You’ll evaluate each Bourbon on four attributes – appearance, aroma, taste and aftertaste/finish.
  • Appearance: The appearance of bourbon can be used to evaluate its level of maturation. Color is visible proof that it is matured in new, charred barrels that rest in open-rick warehouses.
  • Aroma: Swirl the glass 2 or 3 times and then take 3 short sniffs. (Avoid taking long sniffs as this can be overwhelming.) You should be able to identify a number of different aromas in your glass of Bourbon.
  • Taste and Aftertaste: You’ll next judge taste and aftertaste (the finish) in a two-step process. First take a small sip, swish it around the mouth for a few seconds and then swallow. How does it affect the palate? Does it explode in a cascade of flavor or does it just affect a limited portion of the palate? Taste again and judge the finish. Is it short or long? Is it dry or oily? Is it warm and pleasant or hot and irritating?
...the tasting is officially over - but you might find it hard to stop. Always remember to enjoy your Kentucky Bourbon in moderation and responsibly.

Bet you didn't know this is also an educational blog. Most.

Cindy & Kaytu post tasting...grinnin' like a couple of jackasses eatin' cactus.

While there is a legal limit of alcohol a driver can consume on the bourbon tour, the real Sister Louise erred on the side of caution and kept her whiskey sippin' to a minimum.  Waste not, want not is what my pappy always said. And with all the starvation going on in the world, it would be a shame to pour Louise's sippin' Bourbon down the drain. So there I was, lappin' up likker like a fired cowhand.

With Heaven Hill Distilleries stamped in our passports, we spraddled back over to our covered wagon van headed for the next stop on the trail, Jim Beam American Stillhouse. By then, Louise's booze had kicked in, and though a bit airish earlier I was finally warm and toasty.
"Giddy up, Sister Louise! Gotta make it to Jim Maker's and Mark Beam's before last call!"


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