The Date Depth Gauge

The Date Depth Gauge

Elitism rules. But elitism is never announced. Elitism is never something about which an elitist must point out to the lumpenproletariat. It is a thing observed; it is a trait displayed; it is an idea manifested in a person. There is elitism... and there is empty, posturing vanity.

Observe the following example in the sad, pathetic tale of Fred.

A hapless youngish divorcee met a man named Fred through the miracle of Fred seemed nice enough: his station in life was perhaps not all it could be; he wasn't exactly flush with assets; he appeared to have adequate sufficient to feed and clothe himself... if not in the latest style then at least in degree to avoid public indecency laws. He was gifted with a rather stupendous moustache that tended to overcompensate for his balding pate.

So while Fred may not have been the kind of a Daniel Craig to curl the divorcee's toes, he had at least one thing going for him: he announced that Crown Royal Whisky - particularly Crown Royal Reserve - was the best stuff on earth. A mark of good breeding, no? A dash of taste and sophistication to spice up an otherwise bland romantic resume?

Perhaps a little test was in order. Perhaps a kind of date depth gauge.

You see, the divorcee had friends and these friends had friends at Proof66. Is Crown Royal good? Why yes, in fact it is. As Canadian whiskies go, Crown Royal Reserve does quite well. Personally, we feel there are more exciting things going down in the whiskey world but it's very, very hard to go wrong with Crown Royal Reserve.

And thus, a plan was born. Something that must've occurred to anyone who has ever had to listen to a snob opine on anything from fair-trade shade-grown coffee beans to organic vegetarian-fed cage-free hen eggs to European chocolate. Would any of these would-be elite detect a little switcheroo.

We purchased a bottle of Crown Royal Reserve - it comes in a beautiful purple bag (at least the older version does). We also acquired a bottle of garden variety Cutty Sark scotch. Then, in the dark of night, we carefully opened the seal and poured the Crown Royal out and the Cutty Sark in, re-packaged as best we could, put the now thoroughly fraudulent Crown Royal bottle back in the purple bag, and sent it on its way to Fred who was destined to meet it at a weekend party as a special gift.

It was a trial of sorts, to prove the depth of his quality to the divorcee.

Before proceeding, let us compare the attributes of Crown Royal Reserve and Cutty Sark:

  Crown Royal Cutty Sark
Color Deep, Mahogany Brown Wan, Pale Tan
Scent Soft, New-Oak Whiskey Peat Blowing out the top
Taste Smooth, Elegant, Re-Assuring Angry and Kicking
Price About $50 About $15

Upon examining the fraudulent bottle, we doubted anyone who had ever tasted Crown Royal Reserve could possibly be fooled no matter how foolish the fool. So, in a fit of inspiration to at least mask one of the many differences, the Cutty Sark was adulterated with a purple food coloring to at least improve the color. Purple dye, by the way, does nothing to mask the scent or taste but it did at least darken the color.

So to Fred the bottle went. Here is a list of the things Fred did not notice:

  • The box previously opened,
  • The plastic seal clumsily re-attached and falling off the bottle,
  • The peat smell boiling out of the bottle like an active volcano essentially announcing to anyone with a nose the presence of a scotch whisky,
  • The purple food coloring staining the side of the Dixie cup purple, which is not a thing characteristic of any liquor we're aware of, and of course
  • The taste... in fact, Fred announced enthusiastically throughout finishing the bottle to the last drop: 'That's SMOOTH!'
  • Proof66 Date Depth Gauge rating for Fred: shallow.

    Fred, we feel justified in concluding, is certainly not an elitist. In fact, we probably could've put milk from a bowl of chocolate Rice Krispies blended carelessly with perfume and done just as well. Except that would've been more expensive of a prank. We may as well have put tequila in the whiskey bottle for all Fred would've noticed.

    Proof66 is your guide to fine liquors. How you behave with them is up to you. But we offer this story as a good way to test the merits of any potential date that you may have stumbled across. This test can be executed in any locale, with any liquor, and with any willing bartender.

    We will call it the Proof66 Date Depth Gauge.

    Published by