Whiskey History

Prohibition Medicinal Whiskey Brands Don’t Matter — Distillers Do!

Prohibition Medicinal Whiskey Brands Don’t Matter — Distillers Do!

The biggest thing I have learned from collecting prohibition medicinal whiskeys is that the brand doesn’t matter the vast majority of the time. For example, I have a 1/2 pint Old Fitz and a 1/2 pint Waterfill and Frazier. Both were distilled by Mary M. Dowling (one of the most fascinating female distillers of all time. Read this: http://pre-prowhiskeymen.blogspot.com/2014/01/how-mary-dowling-outwitted-national.html). The juice in...

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Old Fitzgerald Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Old Fitzgerald Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Today’s post is a salute to distiller Stitzel-Weller and the brand Old Fitzgerald. These bottles, all unopened, range from the prohibition era up to the mid sixties or maybe a little later. I’m more in the mood of posting photographs rather than storytelling at the moment, so for an exhaustive and fun historical read, please visit The Coopered Tot’s Old Fitzgerald post. I find myself continually visiting this article for the...

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Old Rip Van Winkle – Pappy would be proud…

Old Rip Van Winkle – Pappy would be proud…

Here is one of my favorite bottles in my collection. I’ve seen two others out there that are sealed and unopened and one is a permanent guest at the Getz Whiskey Museum in Bardstown, Kentucky. Scroll to the bottom of this blog post from the Alcohol Professor to see one of them (among some other great bottles). Obviously, the Old Rip Van Winkle brand has been around a long time. In fact, according to the ORVW website: The Old Rip Van...

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101 Rare Whiskey Flasks

101 Rare Whiskey Flasks

It has been too long since my last post, what with life and all. I have so many delicious whiskey posts planned but with so few Spock mind-meld techniques at my disposal, I must submit to the available hours and the speed of my fingers. I’ve been blessed to have been born into whiskey royalty. My father, David M. Spaid, and his (and my) very good friend Harry A. Ford, Jr. put together a not-so-small effort to share some of the rarest...

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Up through the ground came a bubblin crude (whiskey, that is, Black Gold)

Up through the ground came a bubblin crude (whiskey, that is, Black Gold)

<movie_trailer_voice> Imagine a world where Coca-Cola is bottled in Pepsi containers. Imagine a world where Pepsi is put inside RC Cola cans. Imagine a world where the new Brand Promise is no promise at all. Welcome to Soda Prohibition. </movie_trailer_voice> While there was no such thing as Soda Prohibition, unless you consider Mayor Bloomberg’s attempt to super down-size sugary drinks a qualifier, there was a prohibition on...

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Four Roses Straight Whiskey Mystery

Four Roses Straight Whiskey Mystery

As a relative newbie to the American whiskey scene, I am truly fascinated by the heritage of the brands, distilleries and those old pre-prohibition whiskey men (and women). I have a penchant for all things Americana and I love collecting artifacts that shaped who we are now as a nation. My original collecting sin was (and still is to a degree) vintage baseball cards for which I have deep admiration. My affection is not just for the cards but...

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You can thank Prohibition for this Marvelous Whiskey

You can thank Prohibition for this Marvelous Whiskey

Being a marketing guy by trade, I really admire these old advertisements from National Distillers (circa July 1934). Create sense of urgency. Check. Weave a tale of romantic scarcity. Check. Create F.U.D. (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt). Check. The only gaff by today’s standards is the typical wail of the modern ad agency client: “There’s way too much text. Nobody’s ever going to read all that.” Thanks, Internet....

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Old Fiddle Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Old Fiddle Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Circa 1950, these Old Fiddles have been in the family for a while and I’m the current caretaker. Known for their “fiddle” shape, they were inspired by the song “My Old Kentucky Home” written by Stephen Foster. Bourbon doesn’t get any more Kentucky than this. Old Fiddle was a product of Bardstown Distillery out of, you guessed it, Bardstown, Kentucky. I don’t know much about this brand but I look forward...

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Old Barbee Whiskey Tasting

Old Barbee Whiskey Tasting

After doing some of my typical Internet hunting I bring back to my whiskey tribe a beast of an article. Tom Eblen, from the Lexington Herald-Ledger, writes about cracking open his Old Barbee Whiskey and sharing it with longtime Wild Turkey master distiller Jimmy Russell. As it turns out, the bourbon came from the author, whose wife’s great-grandfather Herman Volkerding was president of the now long-gone Kentucky distillery that made it....

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Lincoln Inn Old Rye Whiskey

Lincoln Inn Old Rye Whiskey

I thought I would go north of the border with this post and share my Lincoln Inn Old Rye Whiskey bottles. One is a full pint and the other is a 1/10th pint. The pint bottle has never been opened while the mini was consumed years ago. Either way, these are very neat bottles that came from the Distillers Corporation Limited, Montreal, Canada. The pint bottle shows up a lot on ebay because of the incredible embossing on the front and back. People...

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