Arts & Entertainment

Dowd on Drinks: Notes From All Over

Sometimes the news from the world of adult beverages skips all over the place. Here, then, a roundup of some of the more interesting recent items.

• Many people enjoy having a shot of Jack Daniel’s with their meals. Now they can have a bite of Jack Daniel’s to go with their whiskey.

Jack Daniel’s Properties Inc., the brand licensing unit of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, is launching a line of Jack Daniel’s ready-to-eat meat entrees.

The refrigerated products include baby back ribs, roasted beef brisket, pork loin, barbecue pulled pork and barbecue pulled chicken. They will be made using Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey.

The foods are being produced by Completely Fresh Foods Inc. of Monticello, Calif.

• CANFEST, the first international craft beer judging and tasting for canned beer, is being readied for Reno, Nev.

The Buckbean Brewing Co., Nevada’s largest production microbrewery, will host the event at the Grand Sierra Resort & Casino on October 23. Proceeds will benefit The Nature Conservancy and the Great Basin Bird Observatory.

• The official word is out concerning the embattled N.Y. State Liquor Authority, a bumbling bureaucracy that has been assailed on many fronts. Not surprisingly, it reinforces most of the long-standing criticisms of the authority.

The first part of the New York State Law Revision Commission’s two-part report on findings and recommendations notes:

“The SLA’s current nine-month backlog of license applications reflects a failure in the licensing process, jeopardizes public health and safety, and exacerbates the economic crisis currently plaguing New York. Small business owners, and some large ones as well, are forced to suffer ever-mounting expenses for months on end without the income generated from having these licenses. The situation deprives the state of new revenues from sales and income taxes, and it depresses the growth of new jobs in local communities.”

Despite that sweeping condemnation, apparently the SLA was not found guilty of The Great Train Robbery, the hanging-chad controversy in George Bush’s election, or the disappearance of Amelia Earhart.

• Andrew Hellman likes his drinks on the rocks. So, he invented “rocks” that will chill the drink.

Hellman, co-founder of the tableware company Teroforma, came up with processed soapstone rocks that you store in the freezer for several hours before using. The rocks will not dilute the drink and also will not scratch glass.

The rocks, milled to the size of sugar cubes at the Vermont Soapstone company’s facility in Perkinsville, Vt., are sold in sets of nine in a muslin storage bag for $20. Teroforma suggests them only for small drinks or shots.

(William M. Dowd covers the adult beverage world online at