Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Up for the challenge

Peter Lemon is celebrating the fifth anniversary of his blog The Casks in the usual way, with an Internet scavenger hunt of needlessly esoteric whiskey-related trivia. (Traditionally, the first anniversary, as we all remember to our shame, is porcelain.)

Anyone can Google the answers (and they probably should; Lew Bryson's Tasting Whiskey is the prize). I, however, shall apply the deductive reasoning learned from Golden Age puzzle mysteries to arrive at the answers without external assistance.

1. What is the etymology of the word cask?

Trick question. In a properly maintained cask, there are no insects of any kind.

2. Name a distillery located on the banks of an estuary protected by two shoe-making giants.

Giants are principally Scandinavian. It must be Mackmyra.

3. Name a whisky book published before 1990 that was written by a nom de plume. 

Ha! Name one that wasn't!

4. To date, what’s the best Irish whiskey this blog has come across? 

The correct answer is Redbreast 12, although it's possible he has an incorrect opinion on the matter.

5. What is the origin of the name Laphroaig?

Two drunken Scots. Prove me wrong.

6. Who was Zackariah Harris?

I'm pretty sure he's the fellow who hid all those old family recipes for bourbon in steamer trunks.

7. What is the name of the ill-fated conveyance in Compton Mackenzie’s classic novel?

Rosebud. (Sorry, should there be a SPOILER ALERT?)

8. What’s the Latin genus, section, and species name for Mizunara Oak?

Latin? Look, I don't know how they do things where you're from, but this is the United States of America, and in the USA we just call it a tree.

9. What was Sazerac, originally?

The only drink I was going to order that night, I swear.

10. What did Gaston Bazille and Jules-Emile Planchon name “the Devastator”? 

They sound French. While the list of foreign generals it could be is quite long, I'm going to go with the Judgment of Paris.

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