Thursday, August 27, 2015

Because It Was Invented Here, and Other Excuses to Drink Bourbon

I'm not much of a bourbon guy. Heck, I'm not much of an alcohol guy. But last night, I had to make an exception. We did dinner at Plan B in DC, and while I couldn't try their burger selection, I could try a bourbon sampler. Honestly, I could detect some differences between the samples, though how I'd qualify those tastes are beyond me. But it was a positive experiment, none the less.

If that weren't enough bourbon for the night, Keith and I had a little man time while Becky's parents took care of the kids. We retreated to the hotel bar, where Keith noticed a sign that the Rickey was invented in this very same location. How could I pass up an opportunity to drink a little history? Keith and I ordered a round of Rickeys, which you guessed it, were initially made with bourbon. A decade after it was created, folks started making them with gin, but we had to go authentic.

I can't say that I'm going to be making the Rickey my go-to drink, but I can say it was quite drinkable and between it, and the fancy leather chairs, made me feel awfully important.

And here's the answer to your next DC trivia night: the Rickey is named after Col. Joseph K. Rickey, who, if you believe Wikipedia has this said about him:

Some people are born to fame; others achieve it, while celebrity is thrust upon a few. Among the latter is Col. Joe Rickey, of Missouri. But instead of feeling proud of the fact that he has given his name to a popular tipple Col. Rickey feels very much aggrieved. "Only a few years ago," he said recently, "I was Col. Rickey, of Missouri, the friend of senators, judges and statesmen and something of an authority on political matters and political movements.... But am I ever spoken of for those reasons? I fear not. No, I am known to fame as the author of the 'rickey,' and I have to be satisfied with that. There is one consolation in the fact that there are fashions in drinks. The present popularity of the Scotch high ball may possibly lose me my reputation and restore me my former fame. 'Tis a consummation devoutly to be wished for.'"[8]

Alas, his drink never truly went out of style, and that's all we remember him for. Before you dismiss this fact, note that according to his 1903 obituary, he was "one of a quartet of Colonels who were known in nearly every city in the country."

More important trivia: the Rickey is DC's official cocktail, and July is Rickey Month.

Good times, and enough bourbon to last me the rest of 2015.

As a bonus, I even had some time to take some night shots of DC. This one of the Washington Monument didn't turn out half bad, considering all I had was my phone.

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