Anthony Bourdain loved Pappy Van Winkle's Bourbon. The 20-year was his favorite and one food critic, Craig LaBan, from Philly contends that Bourdain's "enthusiastic encounter with a bottle of Pappy Van Winkle at Stateside...single-handedly pushed that already-coveted bourbon into nearly unreachable cult whiskey status."
Now you may hate him for making Pappy harder to find, but his TV travel shows featuring his wild romps all over the globe eating and drinking some of the best, worst and most interesting foods and distilled beverages around were quite an adventure. Rest in Peace Anthony. Thanks for keeping it interesting. Tonight I'll be enjoying some fine bourbon and watching you cavorting around the world fueled with good food and drink.
One More Week Until Someone Wins a Bottle of Pappy 15
We will draw the winner LIVE on our Facebook Page on June 15. If you don't do Facebook, we will post the video immediately following the drawing on our website and send out an email to the winner. The drawing takes place at 9PM EST and you can buy chances until 8:45 on June 15.
Now, here are some of the best blog posts, articles, etc. that I've read this week about Bourbon and/or Pappy, as well as a tribute to Bourdain by some Chefs in Philly.
Sip and Enjoy!
Anthony Bourdain was the bad boy of chefs, the provocative tell-all author of Kitchen Confidential, and a groundbreaking TV travel show host who celebrated the world’s cultures through food at all levels, from street vendors to gastronomic stars, and in complex, honest ways that had never been presented to the viewing public before. As a result, before his tragic suicide Friday in France, he had became one of the most influential American cultural icons of the past two decades, who, perhaps more than any other figure, helped transform the previously un-celebrated gritty world of the line cook into a seemingly glamorous career direction for a generation of young cooks.
The chefs of Philadelphia are no exception. Bourdain’s visits to the city, to promote a book during a lunch at Brasserie Perrier in 2001, to perform at the Merriam Theater with fellow chef Eric Ripert for his “Good vs. Evil Tour” in 2011, and for a rollicking drunken romp across the city in 2012 for his Travel Channel show The Layover, are still the stuff of local legend. If Anthony Bourdain ate there – and liked it – it was the ultimate validation. His enthusiastic encounter with a bottle of Pappy Van Winkle at Stateside, I contend, single-handedly pushed that already-coveted bourbon into nearly unreachable cult whiskey status.
Now that it is June, barbecue season has kicked off across the country and for many fans, the thing to drink with great BBQ is bourbon. But if you prefer wine, fret not, because last year I wrote an article on expert wine pairing tips for grilled and smoked meats. If you want to do better with your own home grilling and smoking, check out my guide to the Best Grills and Outdoor Cooking Products of 2018.
I recently had the pleasure of visiting Moonshine University, a professional distilling education center in Louisville, Kentucky that teaches the art and science of making spirits, flavors and sensory analysis. Moonshine University also offers public courses, especially its popular 1-day “Executive Bourbon Steward” course held monthly, which attracts more enthusiasts than professionals. The class provides in-depth education about all things bourbon, complete with tasting lessons and sensory training - it’s a really cool way for a bourbon lover to spend a day in Kentucky.
Talk about paying your dues in higher education - the expert faculty at Moonshine U recently undertook an exhausting project to determine which bourbons paired best with the nation’s most prominent regional barbecue sauce styles. The team had to (had to!) try each sauce twice, on both pork and chicken, making detailed tasting notes, and then narrowed down bourbons to match the sauce. They just released their picks for different styles of BBQ, so I am going to defer to their expert palates and pass this on, so you can grab a bottle to go with your preferred type of regional barbecue - I like them all!
We went behind the scenes at the Wild Turkey distillery to learn how bourbon is made, plus sat down with Master Distiller Eddie Russell to talk about the past, present, and future of American whiskey.
Cheers and Enjoy the Chase!