Thursday, February 21, 2013

Pour George Another Whiskey

George Washington's birthday is tomorrow, and if he was around you can bet he'd celebrate by tossing back a whiskey or three.

Rumors of his temperance have been greatly exaggerated. Not only did he cook up his own whiskey at Mt Vernon but, according to a sign at the historic distillery there, "he imbibed a variety of alcoholic beverages: …Port and Madeira and rum made into punch, along with beer and whiskey.”

That distillery - which pumped out a whopping 11,000 gallons during its peak in 1799 - still operates today. It produces an authentic version of Washington's rye-based recipe that's sold around Christmas time.

If you don't have a bottle, but you need to commune with George now, look at your local liquor store for Michter's. It's the whiskey Washington used to fortify his troops at Valley Forge, and it's being percolated once again by a Louisville microdistillery.

So now you know to raise a dram to George: Father of our Country, and Father of the American whiskey industry, as many drinkers dub him.

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