I really didn't think this had to be said, but here we are. This must be why they have dead obvious labels on packaging... that and lawsuits.
There are some things that should never be tampered with. Classic films like Enter the Dragon. The branding for the ever-so-cool sounding platform, Urbanspoon, now Zomato. From personal experience, the gearbox of your first car (that one was expensive...). And then, of course, there's the old-fashioned.
The old-fashioned. It's dignified. Time-honoured. Requires a measure of respect. Doesn't demand respect, no, but respectfully requests it. There's a reason why you'll find minimal variation in its execution and delivery throughout most corners of this world. So who in God's gracious name thought it was a good idea to bottle the old-fashioned like a $5 juicebox?
This latest blasphemy in a long line of food & drink crimes, right next to the smoked watermelon ham and vegan mac 'n' cheese, has been brought to life by Palmer & Co. in collaboration with Maker's Mark and Merivale. And sure, there's an argument to be made that this is convenient and adds a bit of consistency to a product. But we're talking about a whisky cocktail here. This is sacred, ritualistic. Not a bottle of Ribena mix. Pop quiz: what would you rather? Having the actual Mona Lisa hanging in your living room or an Officeworks laser print of it? Trick question, it's a tiny and overrated Renaissance poster, but point made. You're going to want the original, real deal, crowd a hundred people into a narrow hallway of the Musée du Louvre Mona Lisa.
My issue isn't with the content of this Instant-Mix-Fix. It's entirely with the delivery and, quite frankly, insulting treatment of a classic drink. For those of you actually curious, this "... hand-crafted concoction..." apparently involves "... two dashes of bitters, five millilitres of sugar syrup, and sixty millilitres of Maker's Mark bourbon...". It's then "... muddled together, then poured into a bottle...", to be served neat or over ice. All the bartender has to really do is top it off with a garnish of fresh orange peel. I mean, where's the romance in that? The passion for the game? Whatever happened to the art behind the watering holes I knew as a doe-eyed boy lingering around inappropriate places at inappropriate hours? Does nobody remember the music?
As far as I'm concerned, unless the next step for old-fashioned delivery to the system is an intravenous drip straight into my arm, it should not be altered from the existing mode of which we know and love. These are dark days, my friends. Dark days, indeed. Today, it's instant old-fashioneds. Tomorrow, who knows... Yoplait sours?
I'll be in my room if anyone needs me. Don't bother calling me for dinner, just leave a tray at the door.
For all you heathens, the Maker's Mark old-fashioned will be available at such venues as the Angel Hotel, Hotel CBD, The Royal George, Tank Stream Bar, The Grand, Wynyard Hotel, and the Establishment Hotel from August 15th. Find out more here.