Fred Minnick header image


TTB Approves ‘Pink Panty Dropper Watermelon Moonshine’

The U.S. Tax and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau approved the label “Pink Panty Dropper Watermelon Moonshine.”

You can see the government signature approving this product here and here.

Is this sexist?


Pink Panty Dropper is the latest flavored product to showcase a half-naked woman.

Pink Panty Dropper is the latest flavored product to showcase a half-naked woman.

Pink Panty Dropper Bk

According to the Copperhead Mountain Distillery founder John Connelly, Pink Panty Dropper is not intended to be sexist. “My wife came up with that {name}. It’s a little risqué. The label is more cute than sexist. The young lady’s buttocks is not exposed. She’s still got her drawers on,” Connelly told me.

For the record, the Pink Panty Dropper is a punch recipe that college kids like. The South Carolina-based Copperhead Mountain Distillery founder said they chose the Pink Panty Dropper name because watermelon is pink and he’d heard the name before. Connelly encouraged me to not shoot Pink Panty Dropper down, because “It’s real watermelon moonshine. We’re a mom-and-pop distillery. Our purpose is not to just make a top-shelf spirit, but to preserve our moonshine history. We use original old recipes; we are the real deal.”

The spirits industry generally polices itself in promotional matters like this, such as last year’s Dewar’s ads that were deemed sexist. When I referenced the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States’ Code of Responsible Practices, he mentioned he never heard of it.

While the Connellys sound like great people, and I’m all for new mom-and-pop distilleries, you have to know that a half-naked cartoon woman will offend women and men who don’t believe in objectifying women. But I’m willing to give this distillery a pass. For argument’s sake, let’s say they’re naive and really and genuinely think the label is “cute.” They’re only selling the product in the distillery and they’re new.

But why is the TTB allowing this stuff? This now marks the second flavored product we’ve seen with women barely clothed. Today, it’s Pink Panty Dropper and Piehole flavored whiskey. The TTB might as well approve the flavored whiskey: “Who Gives a Shit About Women?”

I understand this government agency is heavily underfunded. But there is no excuse for the TTB, the government’s label authority, to continually approve labels and names that cross the line. Women deserve better.

Fred Minnick is the author of Whiskey Women.

Back in New York: Whiskey Women Tour

I’m excited to announce that I’m signing Whiskey Women books in NY Dec. 8-10. Here’s where and how to find me.

Dec. 8, 7:30 p.m. — Keynote Speaker at the National Arts Club!

That’s right, my ascot and I will be speaking about the virtues of Whiskey Women to members of the National Arts Club and the Culinary Historians of New York. Not a member? Not too worry. Non-members can attend, too. Timeout New York has the scoop.

Dec. 9, 8 p.m. — Copper Still, 151 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

What a great name, right? The Copper Still will be serving cocktails and I’ll be signing books!

Dec. 10, 9 p.m. — Party at American Whiskey — 247 W. 30 St., NY, NY

If names indicate a good time, then, American Whiskey will be a blast.

Books and drinks are available at all three locations.


Craigslist ad: ‘Oral Services’ for Pappy Van Winkle

Who needs Black Friday? It’s “Oral Services” Pappy Saturday!

That’s right, if you live in New Jersey or New York, this Craigslist poster is willing to reach a lick-laden deal for your bottle of Pappy Van Winkle, saying “the older the year, the more effort I’ll put into it.” He or she may be joking (I can’t tell), adding: “I won’t consume it just like I won’t suck you off for Pappy. I will, however, pay you enough cash so you can find a proper professional to do that. Or take your wife/girlfriend out to a nice dinner and maybe you’ll get lucky.”

Whether this guy or gal is off their rocker or truly meant his parenthetical notation of “cash only,” this is a new low for the  Pappy Van Winkle demand. What’s next, somebody’s going to steal cases from the Buffalo Trace Distillery? Oh, wait, that already happened.

Happy Thanksgiving: Drink Bourbon

By now, I hope you’ve read my story, “Forget Wine: Pair Turkey with Bourbon.” This is just a friendly reminder to enjoy a fine bourbon today in cocktail form, neat or with a couple rocks.

Bourbon Barrel

I believe this is future George T. Stagg Jr.

As for me, this is how I’m drinking it today…. Straight from the barrel.

No, I Can’t Get You Pappy Van Winkle

I’m beginning to understand why liquor stores will not stock Pappy Van Winkle. In the past month, I’ve received countless phone calls and emails from people looking to buy or sell the delicious juice. I realize this is par for the course for writing about whiskey, but I can’t help but laugh at some of these:

“I was lucky enough to score a bottle of 23 year last week. E-mail XXXX for any serious offers.”

Okay, let me get right on that.

“Hello, I’m trying so hard to get two cases for a wedding. Everybody said you will never get this bourbon. Please, respond to this and do me a favor and supply me with this.”

… Because I love doing favors for people I don’t know who randomly email me for Pappy. I’m all for love and weddings, but I’d first recommend a visit to a clinical psychologist.

Phone conversation.

Somebody: You’ve written about Pappy .

Me: Yes.

Somebody: Want to buy my bottle?

Me: What?

Somebody: I’ve got a bottle of Pappy. Want to buy it?

Me: Who is this?

Somebody: Want it or not?

Me: Who is this?

The person hangs up without telling me who he is or what particular Pappy release he’s trying to sell.

It’s because of the Pappy phone calls I no longer answer the phone unless I recognize the number.

“We’ve never met, but I’m friends with your neighbor. Can you help me get a bottle of Pappy 23-year-old?”

The person never identified which neighbor.

“Hey, Fred, it’s my dad’s birthday. I’ve been putting off shopping for him and his party is tonight. Know where I can get a quick score of Pappy. It doesn’t matter the year.”

Oh, since the year doesn’t matter, let me just get out my list of places for your last-second shopping effort. You must really love your dad.

Follow me on Twitter / Facebook. It may not be Pappy, but Whiskey Women makes a great holiday gift.