A GIRL walks into a bar 02/03/2016 in Musings

YEAH, that’s right. She does. And she takes a seat, maybe even light a smoke, and casually orders a stiff one. Neat, she points to the best there is on the shelf. It’s a straight shot – she downs it in one go. It burns her throat, whets her palate, sets the mood. Another round please, she coolly signals the bartender. The men, as territorial as they are, gawk and gasp. How dare she, grumble a couple of them. How dare she not, stare the women right back.

The question isn’t who’s going to let me, penned Ayn Rand, it’s who is going to stop me. Yeah, a girl has walked into a bar, and claimed it as her own. Cheers to that, and cheers to all the women who break the barriers, ignore the limits and call it a day with a well-deserved glass of whisky. No dainty stem glasses of sherry or red wines or the bubbly champagnes, heck I’d even leave the breezers, beer and vodkas out for whisky, ladies, believe it or not, has been saved courtesy you. Not only were women, throughout the 1400s through the 1700s making, selling and drinking whisky (Fred Minnick’s Whisky Women: The Untold Story of How Women Saved Bourbon, Scotch, and Irish Whisky), they’ve rescued and established some of the biggest names in the world of whisky, including Lady of Laphroaig Elizabeth Leitch “Bessie” Williamson, Elizabeth Cummings, Brenne’s Allison Patel, Bowmore’s Rachel Barrie, Dewar’s Stephanie MacLeod to name a few…

This Women’s Day, I raise a toast to all the badass women who grabbed life by its lapels and said, bring it on. Agreed, the stereotypes, the all-boys exclusivity of it can be a tad intimidating. But a bottle does not come with the disclaimer ‘only for men’. It neither differentiates nor segregates. It only demands to be appreciated. On that note, I’d like to reiterate – There is nothing manly about drinking whisky. It’s a lifestyle choice, and, gender has nothing to do it. Cultural appropriations and dispositions may, but a man versus woman thing it ain’t. And ‘observations’ that note women who drink whisky are ‘provocative, profound thinkers and have taste for finer things in life’ need to rectify that statement too.

So ladies, there’s a bottle of whisky out there with your name on it. Try it, taste it, savour it, and drink it.

Some girls are made from sugar and spice, others are made from whisky and ice. In the meantime, here’s our list of 5 women who rock with whisky :-

AVA GARDNER

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She’s whisky in a tea-cup. Classy, fabulous, Oscar-nominated actress Ava Gardner had but one request: “I wish to live to 150 years old, but the day I die, I wish it to be with a cigarette in one hand and a glass of whisky in the other.” Sadly, her wish didn’t come true and she passed away at the age of 67 (hopefully with a cigarette and glass of whisky within reach). It’s never too late to raise a toast in her honor.

CHRISTINA HENDRICKS

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If there were Mad Men like Don Draper, there were madder, more passionate women like Joan played by the fiery red haired Christina Hendricks who is a real life whisky aficionado. Introduced to the drink by her husband, Hendricks became a fan for life, with not just the taste, but the blending process too. Before anyone could catch a wind of her new-found love, Johnnie Walker roped her in as a spokesperson for their brand.

HILLARY CLINTON

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Here’s an Iron lady who really knows how to sit at a bar and order a drink. The former Secretary of State, Senator and First Lady is known for her political prowess, but Hillary Clinton is known to slug whisky every now and again. It was during her 2008 presidential bit that a reporter caught her downing a shot of Crown Royal (Canadian whisky? Tsk, tsk, Mrs. Clinton) at a bar in Crown Point, Indiana. Around same time, she dipped her own bottle in the famous red wax at the Maker’s Mark distillery. Here’s someone we’d definitely vote for!

LADY GAGA

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She is as bold in her scotch of choice as she is in her fashion styles. “I drink a lot of whisky and I smoke a lot of weed when I write,” Lady Gaga announced to the world in her ‘shock and awe’ style, professing and confessing her love for whisky, in a 60 Minutes interview with Anderson Cooper. It’s Jameson Irish Whisky she holds to her heart and as a result, Jameson whiskey had a record breaking sales numbers. Howzzat for a lady with a cause!

RIHANNA

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Well, well, this lad certainly has many lovers, and another is the lady under the umbrella, Rihanna. Tipsy over the whisky Jameson, she even dedicated a song to the brand – “Cheers to the freakin’ weekend I drink to that, yeah yeah/Oh let the Jameson sink in I drink to that.” Cheers to that girl!