Today’s the last day of the American Distilling Institute’s annual conference in Louisville, Kentucky, home of horseracing and whiskey. Naturally, I wasn’t carrying any horses (that’d be just silly) but airport security stopped me for the other thing.
See, not only do I like Tuthilltown Spirits, I like the distillery’s packaging—squat, thick-glassed, cork-topped little 375ml bottles. Of course, I prefer the bottles full (or almost so), but even empty, they’re great containers for the odd little infusions, macerations, decoctions, bitters, syrups, and other cocktail weirdness around the Whiskey Forge. So, I snagged an empty Manhattan Rye before it was thrown out after tasting.
I’m not the only one who likes them. In a surprise category, the judging panel for this year’s conference awarded the New York state distillery its best packaging award for its Manhattan Rye Whiskey.
That is what stopped the security line. Again. After inspecting the offending bottle to assure it was indeed empty, the TSA agent inspected the label as well. “Gardiner, New York, eh? Man, if it’s bacon or bourbon, I want it. Of course, I like to support the local boys as much as I can.”
He repacked my New York whiskey bottle, zipped my carryon, and looked up at me, suddenly stern. “Let’s try to drink some Kentucky bourbon now and then.”
Yes. Yes, indeed. Let’s.