The Smell Of Old No. 7

One of the small joys in the life is sitting down in a dark, smoky, seedy bar.  I love the past-her-prime bartender, the beat up pool table in the corner, the jukebox serenading me with Hank and Merle, the sports highlights on mute, and the crusty regulars who have roots entwining their barstools.  But most of all, I love the smell of a freshly poured shot of whiskey.

Before I put back the shot glass, I like to inhale the aroma of that sour mash Tennessee whiskey.  Sometimes I’m so eager, I dip my nose in it by accident.  It’s the anticipation of the sensation, the wash of feeling and warmth and burn that comes with the liquor.  It reminds me I’m alive, even if just by a thread.  Jack, me and you buddy, let’s make some music.

According to lore, Jasper “Jack” Daniel founded the distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee in 1866.  Coincidentally enough, Lynchburg is located in Moore County, which is a dry county that prohibits the sale of alcohol.

There are many theories concerning the whiskey’s “Old No. 7” handle, including reference to lost shipments or Daniel’s six friends who helped to create the recipe.  The company itself claims not to know the history of the term, further extending the mystery of the renowned concoction.  The allure of the instantly recognizable label, though, endures, and beckons to many just like myself.

Cheers to you and your health, and to the next time we have a drink!


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