Saturday, November 18, 2006

Smooth and creamy, spicey sweet with the dewy freshness of autum fruits

Alan, my “date” for the HopScotch Festival tasting event, arrived at my house right on time… in his spanking new Dodge pick-up… black… shiny… a V-8... a BIG truck for a BIG man.

(Alan: 6’4”; singlemalt-lover; funny as hell (partly because of his British accent, giving everything he says a Monty Python-like ring to it); and astrologically… September something… I have to look this up… a Virgo or a Libra. Despite being very happily married to my best friend, Alan is a perfect date, as per the guidelines MVL has suggested I follow in his comments to this post).

I, however, was 20 minutes late and arrived home with four, wet 10-year olds in tow. I could have sworn that I’d started the day with just one Gremlin. This insane Vancouver rain caused the multiplier effect thing to occur…

Thankfully, oh-so-thankfully, I found homes for all four of the singing, dancing, “Happy Feet” Gremlin-penguins, and Alan and I set off to have one bourbon, one scotch and one beer… or two… or seven.

One bourbon: Maker’s Mark. It was actually the last thing I drank before going home, so my judgment may be … mmm… a bit off? But it was forgettable compared to the scotch and whisky I tried.

Dewar’s 12… Aberlour 10… Bushmills Black Bush… the Macallan Fine Oak 10… Auchentoshan 10... Danfield’s Private Reserve Canadian (I had to try a local whisky. Next year I won’t!).

And that’s it. I loved all but the Danfield’s. I wanted to try so many more… An Cnoc 12… Glenmorangie Port Wood Finish… Ardbeg Uigeadail… Bowmore 12… but the combination of my light-weight drinking abilities and the fact that many of the distilleries ran out of elixir by 10:30 (what terrible planning for an event that ran until 1 AM), left me wanting more.

I did save room for a couple of beers at the end of the night.

The Dead Frog nut brown was great. And I love their branding. Their tag-line is “there’s more hops in a dead frog.” Brilliant! And their beer coasters cracked me up. One of the women who was pouring - well, pulling - said her 12-year old son helped develop some of the sayings. My favourite was done by her kid, “This is one dead frog that ain’t donating its body to science.” (I did wonder, but did not ask, if they’ll be marketing Dead Frog in my home province… la belle provinceje me souviens… I find the idea tres amusant).

The Red Truck ale wasn’t to my taste at all, although the branding was clever and the young women serving were smokin’! They were wearing red mechanic coveralls, but with the tops folded down around their hips… one of these beer babes had dimples on her lower back that could hold an ounce of scotch each… damn! Her t-shirt said, “Truck me!” Poor girl… 600+ drunk men and women… an invitation like that on her chest… I can imagine the pick-up lines she had to endure all night…

Four hours of standing, sipping, talking, laughing and people watching - meaning Alan helpfully pointing out all the men who “look single.” Jesus, I hope nobody ever surreptitiously nods in my direction, saying to a friend, “Joe. The tall one. She looks single.”

The night ended without event. Not even a drop of spillage to offer an opportunity for conflict and a story. But a good, fun, boozy night none-the-less. And I already have my date for next year. It will be our third annual. And I'm saving my tasting booklet, so I can be sure to start with the scotch I missed trying this year.


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November 18, 2006  
Blogger MVL said...


Let me add then, "...and single or otherwise available" to the characteristics of dates you should be seeking. An english accent is always a bonus.

I wondered about the Hopscotch event and I'm sorry there were no fisticuffs, bullying or other unlady-like behaviour on your or Alan's part to report.

I should also tell you that someone, somewhere, at sometime has pointed you out and said to his or her companion, "yeah, the tall one. No, no, don't look now. Is she looking over here? Is that John Cleese with her?"

Trust me. Men talk in the shower. We tell each other things. You've come up.

I'm going to open a bottle of wine and if that doesn't cure what ails me I'm routing around the house for a gun or something with which to shoot myself or impale myself to death or maybe I'll just club myself with it.

What ails me, by the way, is a nasty cold, cough and malaise.

November 18, 2006  
Blogger Donna said...

MVL - I'm on day ten of the worst head and chest cold I've had in years... although not ready to shoot myself, I am considering totally submerging myself in a hot bath full of whatever that stuff is that's coming from our taps these days. I figure it will either cure or kill me. And I don't care which... I can't live another day not being able to breathe through my nose.

Since you're sick too... I have a proposal...

I have a great recipe for Neo Citron and whisky that I've yet to try (since I won't drink alone). I'd love to test it with you - not on you - with you... come on... you know you want to!

November 18, 2006  
Blogger MVL said...


Blech! I'm willing to tolerate my own sweet-smelling self rather than bathe in... what the 'eff is that, anyway? As for warmth I've two hot-water bottles - one for the lower back and another for the chest, stomach or upper back.

The wine is running through my bloodstream and dawdling in my brain cells - I think I see Tiger, my cat from 37 years ago. He's frowning and motioning me to come close to him.

We'll have to do the Neo Citron Whiskey combo (something to consider as a pub drink, maybe) some other time. Tiger has found a hole in the time space continuum and he says that my tribe can found just on the other side. I wonder what happened to my Snoopy stuffed animal? Remind me to check for it.

I'll see you soon, bella!


November 18, 2006  

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