After a gloriously long sleep in on Sunday Steve came round with an old army friend who we were taking to Sperryville to shop about the antique stores. I liked Paul immediately when after stepping out of the car he promptly asked me if I made horseradish sauce while pointing out the broad green leaves along the front of the house. I liked him further when I saw photos of his wife and quadruplets that they had adopted from Vietnam, and the beautiful house on which he'd worked along with the vegetable garden he was nurturing. But life had been cruel to him, he had served twice in Iraq and paid the price. The toxic fumes from burning buildings and vehicles had ravaged his heart and lungs leaving him unable to perform to his previous physical ability. He used to be a record runner on camp yet today he seemed to hold no grudges, just thankful for the life he was still able to lead and enjoy.
On the way to Sperryville, Paul entertained us with numerous limericks, songs and poems. He was a self assured narrator and had us laughing, especially when he told us he was teaching his children to recite some of these poems. One of my favorites was The Rhyme of the Chivalrous Shark
We stopped at an antique mall that I'd often driven by and never ventured inside until today. It had plenty of interesting artifacts and wasn't overpriced. I even saw a few possible Christmas presents.
We strolled over to Copper Fox Distillery and was told we could be taken on a tour immediately. We all consented, the place smelled like heaven. A warm whiskey scent filled the air with a sweet spiciness that had me walking about as though someone was pulling a string tied to my nose. I couldn't stop sniffing.
They also produce a Blue Top whiskey which is aged in barrels with smoked apple wood chips for 12 months and then spends an additional 6 months in port wine barrels. The top of the bottle is dipped in smooth blue candle wax. A bottle had once been reported because it had a drip hardened in the wax, resulting in a cease and desist letter from Makers Mark, since their bottles have the dripping red candle wax. Copper Fox now rolls its bottles to ensure a smooth wax finish. Blue Top can also only be purchased form the distillery whereas their other bottles can be bought in retail outlets.
We drove back to Meadow House and sat on the patio, cracking open Steve's single malt from Copper Fox and sparking up cigars, this time a little smaller and easier for me to handle.