July 20th, 2012
Oops, I inadvertently missed a week; doubling up today to catch up.
Seagram’s King Arthur
First up, from the July 12, 1937, issue of Life magazine, an ad with a cocktail recipe included:
Martini & Rossi
Next, an ad from the July 19, 1937, issue; this one reflects how much our drinking culture has changed since the 1930s. Few people today drink vermouth on its own, of course, even though more of us should.
Of course, this ad reminds me I keep promising to make Vermouth Cassis for Mrs. Bitters. Oops.
July 16th, 2012
If you’re reading this blog, I generally assume that you’re a drinker, or at least unopposed to the concept of drinking. Which means I assume that you have, from time to time, checked out other websites related to alcohol. Some of them were probably brand pages — official websites for whisk(e)y, gin, rum, and other spirits brands.
If so, you know the hoops you have to jump through, entering your date of birth to demonstrate that you’re of legal age to consume spirits. Perhaps you’ve even wondered why anyone’s so stupid as to believe that everyone who visits such pages are telling the truth. I mean, I personally have been of drinking age for well over 20 years, and even I don’t always tell the truth about my age, simply because the older I get, the less patience I have for scrolling down, down, down, down, down, down to finally alight on 1968. So I hit the drop-down box, and if my cursor lands on 1985 or 1979 or whatever, who cares?
So today, word comes that some alcohol brands have signed on to a plan to allow Twitter to age-screen Twitter followers. The procedure works like this:
- You click a link to follow Miller Lite on Twitter. (Why? Presumably because you don’t like actual beer.)
- You get a DM asking you to verify your age at age.twitter.com within 24 hours.
- If you pass the age muster for your country, Twitter lets you follow Miller Lite.
I can’t say I understand the hoopla. Liquor companies and breweries advertise outside all the time and all over the place. I’ve never yet seen someone clamp a hand over the eyes of a youngster to keep the poor innocent from seeing Sean Combs’ mug on a Ciroc ad.
But just in case the prospect of a Belieber visiting ciroc.com is something that gives you the night sweats, rest easy. Twitter’s on it.
July 6th, 2012
Century-Old Whiskey Bottles Found in Missouri Man’s Attic
To save money on the installation of central air-conditioning in his St. Joseph, Mo., home, Bryan Fite began replacing the wires in his attic, prying up the floor boards on the rafters. Along with possible savings, he found a treasure beneath the floorboards: 13 bottles of century-old whiskey.
[Warning: there's an Auto-Play video at the link; very annoying]
July 6th, 2012
Love this Gordon’s ad. Love love love love. Life mag, July 5, 1937.
First, I love the stem glass, especially the stem, but also the bowl. The other glassware, the ice bucket, the martini pitcher. All lovely, and all items I now covet. I love that the martini has a bit of color to it, perhaps from the vermouth that was used.
Here’s the text, if you want to read it:
But I also really love the bottle. Let’s look at that in fancy giant size.
Check out the detail! The weird cap with the wire-twist enclosure. The juniper berries. The boar’s head. The words NEW JERSEY embossed on the bottle side. And, of course, the proof: 94.4. (If Wikipedia is accurate, bottlings sold in continental Europe are sold at 94.6, or 47.3% abv.)
Some hot stuff here, folks. These are the gems that keep me coming back to this feature.
July 3rd, 2012
Gin Palace Says State Turned Off the Tap on Its Cocktails
The New York State Liquor Authority has stopped Gin Palace, a new East Village bar, from serving cocktails on draft, according to its owner.
June 29th, 2012
From the June 28, 1937, issue of Life comes this one rule for staying cool in the hot, hot summer:
Add a sea lion to your bath.
The text on this bizarre ad isn’t interesting, but if you want to read it, click through and read it.
June 22nd, 2012
Interesting message in these ads: the gin in a mixed drink shouldn’t taste like gin. First up, one from the June 14, 1937, issue of Life magazine:
Next, a week later, June 21, 1937:
The text in these is tricky to read. Here’s the first:
And the second:
June 20th, 2012
NPR’s Planet Money blog explores the economics of boozing. Boozenomics?
June 15th, 2012
Two whiskey ads from the June 14, 1937, issue of Life magazine.
First up, Schenley’s Cream of Kentucky bourbon. I’ll have more to say about the history of Schenley’s at a later time. Apparently, the Cream of Kentucky brand has been defunct since the 1980s.
And, oh, take note of the artist’s name. Perhaps you’ll recognize him.
The second ad, I have to admit, is a repeat, but there’s a reason for that. The ad itself is a repeat; it ran more than once in Life, first in December 1936. I featured it here a couple of months ago. Here it is again:
As noted previously, Kentucky Tavern still exists as a brand. Here’s a fairly recent image of its bottle lineup:
Earlier this week, Chuck Cowdery posted news that this venerable brand has gotten a facelift. His post is worth a read, and if you click through, you’ll see the new label.