Ad of the week: Calvert



Life; February 14, 1938.

Calvert is still around, still a blended whiskey. It’s reportedly 70% neutral grain spirit, and 30% straight whiskey — or as some folk like to say, it’s a whiskey-flavored vodka.


Ad of the week: Early Times

The whiskey that made Kentucky whiskies famous. Wait, that sounds familiar.




Life; February 7, 1938.

Early Times has a history dating back to 1860, when the first whiskey under this name was produced. Brown-Forman acquired it in 1923 and still owns the today. During Prohibition, BF marketed Early Times as a medicinal whiskey.

Today, the product is known as a “Kentucky whisky” (why they drop the e that’s traditional when describing American whiskeys is a question I can’t answer). It’s made the way bourbon is made, except that Early Times, today, is aged in used oak barrels. Straight bourbon, by law, must be aged in new oak barrels. New barrels impart more woody flavors into a distillate than do used barrels, and thus Early Times doesn’t taste as bourbony as bourbon should.

Early Times continued as a straight bourbon until the 1980s, and as of two years ago, a bourbon version is again marketed by Brown-Forman. The two products are now sold side-by-side; the bourbon is called Early Times 354.

Ad of the week: après le café




Lifestyles of the 1%.

Prince Alexis Obolensky was a real guy, and a colorful figure at that. His family fled the Bolsheviks and traveled through Europe and, apparently, the United States. Incidentally, the prince would have been about to turn 18 when this ad ran, so he came upon his sophisticated after-dinner beverages as a youngster. He died fairly recently, in 2006.

[Life; October 18, 1937]