Booze news: Whiskey, Vodka and Noir Films

Enjoy a timeless classic and a quality grilled cheese sandwich


JAKE MONROE | The Daily Evergreen

Molly Carney smiles wide with a Deschutes beer in hand during the Tap Takeover fundraiser Sept. 12.

CHRIS WEST, Evergreen columnist

There’s something to be said about afternoon college football games. “Nostalgic” comes to mind. A college covered in ivy, a coliseum or stadium filled to overflowing with 100,000 rabid, wildly cheering fans; great armies of coaches, mascots, photographers, alumni, elaborate bands; and two teams resplendent in brilliant uniforms create a riot of color and atmosphere unequaled by any other game on earth. All under the cool afternoon sun.

And then we win; bringing our record to 4 – 0. One might call that a streak. I sure would. Which brings me to my point: alcohol. Thinking back to a time where fedoras were a necessity for going out anywhere and women had nicknames like “Breathless Mahoney” or “Babs” or something like that, I was in the mood for something old fashioned.

All you need is a pack of Lucky Strikes, a muted trumpet narrating your every move and someone you refer to as “Dollface” at your side, and you have a good night. Now it’s time to add the booze.

That’s where Skylar “Bee’s Knees” Cracraft of the Foundry comes in. If there’s a dapper flatfoot in the bar with a whiskey drink, then there has to be a bombshell blonde in a tight black dress, ruby red lips and contours that resemble a topographic map of the Andes, sipping something classy, inspirational and just plain naughty. I was that guy. And there was that girl there. Blonde and everything. But I digress.

Mister Cracraft created noir in a glass with his creation: Respect Your Elders. It screams sophistication with just the right amount of “anything you can do, I can do better,” added to it. Just don’t sing. That will ruin the mood.

This custom cocktail is a blend made up by Cracraft entirely from scratch. Vodka, St. Germaine Elderflower, lemon zest and a rose water wash gives this drink a nose that resembles a spring day: Perfume and orange blossoms. But take a sip and you get something completely, albeit deliciously, different.

What I can only describe as “This is what a grown up with awesome taste” should drink, it resembles a martini with a sultry twist, without all the unpleasantness of a salty aftertaste and the Bureau of Prohibition kicking down the door. Who needs that? People who like salt, I suppose. It’s Aces, or the cat’s meow, or whatever. It’s awesome and fantastic. Buy the drink.

I also feel it important to mention: Southfork Public House deserves a special place in history as well, as the pantheon of the immortals with their menu item, the Ultimate Grilled Cheese. I mean, let’s face it, if you don’t like grilled cheese on a cold autumn afternoon, then I don’t know what to tell you.

“And what does this majestic food go well with,” you may ask. Why, Bloody Marys, the tomato soup for people who are brave and ambitious. Margaritas would also pair well. The South Fork Margarita is a refreshing and potent break from the normal sickly-sweet stuff you find at chain restaurants. The splash of soda gives it a very nice bubbly kick to it.

I’d like to reach out to any of you out there who knows something that I don’t. I’m always on the lookout for good booze, good friends and good conversation, which usually happens in that particular order. If you can make a great cocktail, know of a fun wine or an awesome brew, or know where I can find one, let me know. Contact info below. That said, be safe my friends and bottoms up.

Chris West is a sophomore viticulture and enology major from Plano, Texas. He can be contacted at [email protected].