Thumb Your Nose

We hung out at Meta this past Wednesday night—the Louisville cocktail bar known for its crazy concoctions, but perhaps even more for its Pappy jello shots. Yes, last year Meta took national headlines on food and spirit blogs everywhere for using its allocation of Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon to make really, really good jello shots. It was a commentary on the insanity. A statement on how crazy this whole phenomenon has become.

"It's not like we were taking branded Jello out of the box and dumping Pappy into it," the bartender told us while we sipped our drinks. "They were really well-made—Luxardo, fresh purée of fruit, the whole works. It wasn't some haphazard thing."

But some people were mad. Really mad.

"The owners even got a few death threats," she told us. I wasn't sure whether to laugh or cry. What's funny is that a few people even emailed me when this all went down, looking for a little outrage empathy (as if I'm some purist or defender of booze ethics). 

"Can you believe this nonsense?" they asked incredulously. "This is ridiculous!"

But were they talking about the Jello shots or the fanaticism we're experiencing with cult American whiskey these days? Because one of them is definitely outrageous and ridiculous, and it's not the Jello shots.

-David Driscoll

David Driscoll