Saturday, July 1, 2023

Kicking Off The Holiday

Independence is not officially marked until Tuesday, but for many, the holiday vacations start on the prior weekend. And why not? So many fringe causes get a special month, surely the founding of our Nation deserves more than one day. I get a short "official" vacation rest starting onTuesday, but kicked off the holiday week on Friday evening with, not surprisingly, a good bourbon and cigar.

I've been looking at some of the near empty bottles on my shelf and thinking I should get them emptied to make room for others. The bottle of Eagle Rare Bourbon was the project for the evening. It also seems a fitting label for the holiday. To go along with the sweet beverage, a My Father Le Bijou 1922

Eagle Rare is a ubiquitous bourbon found in many restaurants and home bars. Unfortunately here in Virginia it is on the "allocated" list. Only when random stores have surprise drops, and IF the store has it on hand, and IF you are one of the first 6 -12 customers, and IF you don't want to buy anything else on the allocated list, you are then able to acquire it. Fortunately for me, during our last trip to North Carolina, I found Eagle Rare fully stocked at a state ABC there, sold at MSRP and without limit.

The 10 year old bourbon can be had for under $35 a bottle, which makes it truly a bargain. It's a smooth drinker with oak, dark fruit sweetness, and some spice. Well balanced and easy to sip, it's one I try to keep around, even if that's difficult to do at times.

The My Father Le Bijou 1922 is a 6" X 52 box-pressed torpedo wrapped in a glossy chocolate Nicaraguan Habano wrapper. The binder and fillers are also Nicaraguan. It's a full bodied smoke with rich notes of cocoa and espresso. Mild sweetness and pepper are present for balance, and makes a fine mix with the sweet bourbon. Cigar Aficionado picked this cigar as their #1 of 2015. Magazine rankings and ratings are not necessarily an accurate predictor of how any one person might enjoy a cigar. In this case, for me, the commendation was accurate. The burn was razor sharp and the cigar provided nearly a 2 hour smoke. The flavor profiles of the cigar and the bourbon paired well for a pleasurable repast.

In one small accomplishment, the bottle was emptied over the course of the cigar. As luck would have it, there was a backup in the pantry. That space on the shelf didn't stay empty for long.


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