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Issue 122 - Whiskey and Apparel

Whisky Magazine Issue 122
September 2014

 

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Whiskey and Apparel

Leapfrogging what's inside the bottle

As my wife clutched the toilet bowl in sheer terror, screaming, heaving, crying and clutching her stomach, she yelled, “Freddie, get me the Old Tub shirt.”

We were in labour, and the Old Tub bourbon T-shirt was what she wanted to wear to the hospital. I jumped to her dresser, yanked the damn thing off its hinges and grabbed the grey shirt. I thought that was it. “Ugggg….awwwww…..awwwww…”

Jaclyn didn't look at the shirt; she just put it on. It wasn't the Old Tub shirt. The grey shirt donning her sweating, heavy breathing, birthing body was not bourbon owned by Jim Beam. Rather, it was bourbon owned by Brown-Forman, Old Forester.

We sprinted to the car, and our doula said I drove 95 mph. “Jaclyn, this isn't the best time to tell you, but you're wearing the Old Forester shirt,” I said something of the sort.

“It's okay,” she said, “I love Old….ahhhhh…..”

When Oscar Leo Minnick was born into this world December 31 (That's right, a whiskey writer's son was born on New Year's Eve!), the Old Forester shirt was crumbled in a corner and we later enjoyed a nip of Old Forester Birthday Bourbon to celebrate the little man's entrance into the world.

I tell you this personal story, because it's a perfect anecdote to American whiskey leapfrogging what's inside the bottle and becoming Nike-esque with its apparel lines and Tabasco-like with its part co-branding. Jaclyn didn't want a bottle of bourbon with her; she wanted her favourite bourbon shirt on th...

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