2nd City Single Barrel Bourbon | Augusta, GA

This is not a celebratory drink. This is not really a review. This is a remembrance. Today is my anniversary leaving the COVID Ward at University Hospital. I was one of the lucky ones. My next door neighborhood, Dr. Robert Turner, a wonderful man, died while I was there. I remember lying in my hospital bed crying when I heard he had passed because I knew he had died alone.

I was lucky in that I was there only long enough to get my breathing stabilized. Six days. It was the 3 weeks after I got home that was living hell for me and my family. The steroids they treated me with made me a bit nuts. I was so lucky to have a family who loved me and helped me pull through it. I really don’t want to rehash the hell I put them through. I also thank my church family who prayed for me… although most didn’t know that I had COVID.

The nurses (I give then first credit) and the doctors at UH were fantastic. I remember talking to Nurse Shane in the ER while they tried to admit me. I hope he got the well deserved rest… with a clear mind… he sought. The doctors warned I could suffer from PTSD from my stay but considering I was in a cardiac ward room that was almost like staying in a luxury suite that didn’t happen. I never saw anyone’s face, or another patient the whole time I was there. If I suffered from PTSD it would be the result of understanding the full scope of what my family went through when I got home.

So tonight I thought I would sit back and reflect on the last year. I am grateful for my good fortune on recovering and not suffering from long haul symptoms. I am saddened that people have not taken this seriously and have shunned the vaccine. (I take a blood thinner so I am convinced that it kept me from having the most serious symptoms. I fought “pneumonia” for two weeks before I tested positive. The doctors gave me some strong antibiotics that messed with the blood thinner and kept me from having any clots that I think has destroyed many people’s lungs and caused lasting damage throughout their body. I’m lucky I didn’t bleed to death).

2nd City Single Barrel Bourbon
So I decided to have something local. I found a bottle of 2nd City’s Single Barrel Bourbon hiding in the wine rack. 104 proof. The clerk at Augusta Liquor said it was their first single barrel and was a special purchase. Its label says it’s Georgia Style Bourbon. I bought it at Augusta Liquors late last year when it first came out. I broke the blue seal tonight.

I can’t say it that I pick up any special notes on the nose. It bites a bit at 104 proof but it’s not that bite you get from a quickly run whiskey. I think they took their time with this one….. but considering they’ve only been in business for a couple of years this isn’t a long aged bourbon. Their website lists their flagship bourbon (80 proof) so I feel special having their Single Barrel.

I think that David Long, Cal Bowie have done a fine job on this bourbon. I hope one day to make it down to their tasting room down on 8th Street and sample their other offerings. Once again, this isn’t really a review so I’ll save the details when I can venture downtown… after this pandemic crap subsides. I’ll let them tell me what a Georgia Style Bourbon is supposed to be,

Nice sipping bourbon. Neat or with some ice. Good corn backbone. A hint of sweetness but nothing that screams vanilla or strong charred barrel flavors. But it is most definitely bourbon.

A special thanks to Steven Colbert. His monologue late at night kept me going. It is on my bucket list to sip a bourbon with him at the little bar in the front of the Ed Sullivan Theater.

I raise my glass in honor of those who have helped fight this COVID pandemic… in my case from the ambulance drivers who sat with me for 4 hours in the ER waiting room, to nurse Shane who snuck me a frozen dinner at 1AM, to the nameless nurses who smuggled me real tea bags (not supposed to have caffeine on a cardiac floor) to the folks who gave me the vaccine at Houghton School. Thanks to the Beer Brothers who had Zoom calls with me to cheer me up and help me get my head straight. Raising a glass to my family is no where enough to show the thanks and love I have for them.

Here’s hoping that this time next year I don’t even have to think about having a remembrance drink. God bless those who are treating those who are suffering, have suffered and will suffer from COVID in the coming months. God bless the families who are suffering through this as well and supporting their loved ones. God bless you.

Distillery: 2nd City Distilling


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