Freedom Flavor: Old Overholt Rye Whiskey

Freedom Flavor: Old Overholt Rye Whiskey

My thesis: things taste differently at different times. Let’s agree on this. When you go on the Miller brewery tour in Milwaukee that Miller Lite tastes damn good — and it’s the same shit beer they serve around the world that tastes like swill. Something is happening. When Lisa and I were at the Gloria Ferrer winery in Napa, the sparkling wine they served us was amazing … and it’s never been that good again. There was something in the air, something in the view over the valley, the fact that we were on vacation and free, that we wouldn’t be returning to work that Monday.

Lisa has a theory that things taste differently in different climates, different airs. I definitely agree, but I think there’s something more psychological going on as well — not just scientific. Hear me out.

On a Monday, the drink after work tastes of relief and weariness. It’s practically a medicinal drink — a blow against the tide of the work-week, something to steel your nerves for Tuesday. The drink on Friday is different — it’s jubilant, joyous. The weekend is here. There will be sleeping in and fun dinners and time with friends … and that makes the same drink taste differently. At least that’s my working theory.

My experience: Old Overholt. I like Old Overholt. I first had it at Longman & Eagle in Chicago (which I miss). It’s a decent rye whiskey with a reasonable price. Supposedly it was Doc Holiday’s drink of choice. Who knows — all I know is that it tastes different out here. Sure, it could be the dry air, the dust, maybe some residual radioactive isotope floating around, but I think it’s the freedom. And I’ve never tasted that before, so I’m not really sure how to describe it. But I think you should try it. It’s intoxicating.

My first taste of freedom in the middle of the Kansas plains.
My first taste of freedom in the middle of the Kansas plains (this theory may be half-cocked too).

What do you think? Does my theory hold, er, whiskey?



4 thoughts on “Freedom Flavor: Old Overholt Rye Whiskey”

  • I agree completely. Music too. It sounds different depending on location, mood, phase of the moon. And by the way, how did you go this long into the trip without drinking whisky?

  • I love Old Overholt. Never had it outside, I don’t think. That picture ensures I’ll do it this week.
    Every day for a week, my wife and I had complimentary hardboiled eggs, croissants, and cheese served to us by a Cameroonian in Paris. Best breakfasts we’ve ever had.
    Tried to recreate it in Chicago with terrible results. We came to realize that the missing ingredient was Paris. And the Cameroonian, probably, but definitely Paris.
    Years ago an uncle took me to a concert for a zydeco band in New Orleans. The crowd was large and enthusiastic, the weather was fine, the music, it seemed, spectacular.
    Bought the CD. Was sure the band would be the next U2.
    Tried listening to it in Chicago and honestly thought I’d bought the wrong CD.  It was terrible stuff. I mean, not only was it zydeco music, I’m convinced it wasn’t even good zydeco music. The CD was not even a good coaster.
    It was the atmosphere. The night air, the people, the vibe. You can never dip your toe in the same river again.  

    • Wow, agree on the zydeco. Had the same experience — only two songs on the CD I bought were tolerable, but everything at the concert was fantastic.  

      And yeah, Paris lends a wonderful flavor to nearly everything. I’d live there.

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