First Father of Booze


George Washington is back in the business of whiskey making, reports the Associated Press:

George Washington's estate on the Potomac River hasn't been home to a working distillery for about two centuries, but that changed Tuesday as whiskey makers recreated the father of the country's popular recipe.

"For me, it's like standing on hallowed ground," Jim Beam master distiller Jerry Dalton said as he took a break from preparing the 18th century recipe to survey the scene, three miles from the main house where Washington lived from 1754 until he died in 1799.

"George Washington, he was the one that won the Revolutionary War. He was the first president," [whiskey-seller Jack Lynch] said. "It helps put into perspective that there's nothing wrong with the distilling process."

No wonder Geo. was first in the hearts of his countrymen. Next up: A signature line of dentures?

Whole thing here.

NEXT: Wayne's World

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  1. no wyfe, no horse, no moustache

  2. And a big “frimmin’ on the jim-jam” back atcha, Mr. Wizard of Id.

  3. “People have always found a way to take some of their food supply and turn it into alcohol in order to make their lives a little more miserable than they would otherwise be.”

  4. What a great day this is. All I want to know is where to submit my bid for one of the 96 bottles.

    My next question is this: How long till the NAACP demands the profits be donated to them since slaves worked the original still?

  5. Good one, Diego.

    I happen to be in the middle of a biography of GW. It mentions that Washington drank “like a gentleman”, stopping short of intoxication, and was very fond of gambling at cards. When he ran for local office, his friends plied the voters with spirits, as was the custom of the times.

  6. Wasn’t it common for politicians to give out free whiskey on election day? That’s a get out the vote program everyone could get behind. Also led to some out-of-control parties at the White House.

  7. It’s amazing how much people drank “before intoxication” in those days. Whiskey with lunch, and such.

  8. I think George used the whiskey to soften the pain of bumping his head on all those short doorways they had back then.

  9. Whiskey for lunch? Whiskey for breakfast. I read that in the Missouri territory circa 1850 the usual breakfast for many a farmer was something like 16 oz. of beefsteak taken with a pint or so of corn liquor.

    Even the Mormons on the Utah frontier were pretty heavy users of homemade whiskey up until the late 1800s, when the church started discouraging it in a serious way.

  10. Didn’t he also put down the Whiskey Rebellion?

  11. Indeed. Must have been a competing brand.

  12. Looks like it wasn’t about taxes after all…

  13. “It helps put into perspective that there’s nothing wrong with the distilling process.”


    Since Washington also grew hemp, one could extend this analogy to God’s own herb too.

  14. Hmmm, Ken, do you think it would also extend to the other George’s? You know, the one who enjoyed a little coke now and then and the father who imported it?

  15. I think water was probably worse for your health back then than whiskey with every meal.

  16. What this does is put the “imprimator,” as the Pope would say, if he could talk, on sin.

    Have another round of sin everybody!

  17. “I read that in the Missouri territory circa 1850 the usual breakfast for many a farmer was something like 16 oz. of beefsteak taken with a pint or so of corn liquor.”

    And then they’d work all day at a sawmill, or dangling 50 feet up in the rigging of a ship, or something equally dangerous. Maybe those life expectancy increases weren’t all from antibiotics!

  18. EMAIL:
    DATE: 01/20/2004 10:40:33
    I do not fear computers. I fear lack of them.

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