“Remember the Maine!”
The Bulleit Rye launch event was a shot that was heard around the world, or at least tasted. New to the scene but already a gold standard, having won top honors on the global stage, Bulleit Bourbon’s new younger sibling has high standards to live up to. It’s a bit like having Jesse Owens as your big brother and deciding to become a track athlete.
The master of ceremonies at this posh event was none other than the founder himself, Tom Bulleit and his charming daughter, adorned in a Lady Liberty tiara. Though I knew that Bulleit Bourbon was my favorite, I had no idea that the spirit had achieved double gold status for years running and that the new rye took the world with the same commanding performance.
Achieving the highest honors for taste and design (the bottle is brilliantly designed), I had to do a double take upon finding that a full bottle was gifted to us for attending the coming out party for our new flag bearer.
Along with the accolades of our fine host, we were entreated to imbibe by 8 of NYC’s greatest mixologists. On my right were new takes on standard classics like the Manhattan (aptly named the Manahatta). On my left were custom concoctions made to order by discerning liquid therapists.
My favorite of the evening was, “Remember the Maine,” noted by writer Charles H. Baker as “a hazy memory of a night in Havana during the unpleasantness of 1933, when each swallow was punctuated with bombs going off on the Prado, or the sounds of 3” shells being fired at the Hotel Nacional, then a haven for certain anti-revolutionary officers. I knew it was a drink for me:
- 2 ounces Bulleit Rye
- ¾ ounce sweet vermouth
- 2 teaspoons Cherry Heering Liqueur
- ½ teaspoon absinthe
- Finished with a squeeze of lemon rind
Photographs by Jeffery Owens for Socially Superlative.