Most holidays celebrate being blessed with something wonderful -- the love of a benevolent god, independence...trees -- but perhaps our greatest holiday commemorates getting rid of something stupid: Prohibition. As December 5 approaches, honor the Repeal with the whisky that helped sustain us during the ban, Canadian Club.
Just a mile over the Detroit River, Canadian Club was the liquor of choice for the murderous Al Capone, the uncannily dependable William "The Real" McCoy, and other bootleggers cashing in on the fact that, outside of certain presumptuous Kansas women, many Americans considered distilled spirits a fundamental right (see bottle-smuggling woman at left); according to lore, cases of CC even lined the walls of the warehouse that hosted the St. Valentine's Day Massacre -- one of the most tragic wastes of whisky in US history. Canadian Club's history actually stretches back further, to 1858, when Hiram Walker produced the first barrel in Walkerville, Canada, naming it "Club" for its popularity amongst the finer gentlemen's clubs of the day, which we can assume blared less hair metal than the finer gentlemen's clubs of this day. Honoring tradition, the good stuff's still produced in Walkerville -- a 150-year run they're celebrating with the release of Canadian Club 30-Year-Old (a 150-year was considered, but in 1858, anyone who thought the world would last until 2008 was burned as a witch).
To celebrate both the Repeal and a slightly more immature milestone, Canadian Club will be pouring at Thrillist's One Year Anniversary on December 4th. For a shot at attending the bash, email the answer to the following to CanadianClub@thrillist.com:
Which state was the first to outlaw the consumption of alcohol?
Then hit CanadianClubWhisky.com for more history, a quick look at their awesomely 1970s "Damn Right Your Dad Drank It" campaign, and some seriously sweet gear -- so if Prohibition ever returns, the bootleggers'll know you're looking to hug something more satisfying than a tree.