DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. – The Greenburgh Hebrew Center men’s club gathered at the Dobbs Ferry synagogue Thursday night for a new and informative type of get together; a bourbon tasting.
“Next week is the Jewish holiday of Purim and one of the traditions of Purim is that you drink,” said Mike Smith, a member of the men’s club. “Over time people would often say that’s how scotch tasting came about because people would bring over bottles to your home. When you drink something that’s really good you say ‘Gee that’s really good, wouldn’t it be great if we knew a little more?’”
The tasting featured six different kinds of bourbon for the men to sample, which were supplied by Judy Brazong, owner of My Sherry &more in Briarcliff Manor. To go along with the sampling were explanations and information on each type from John Richards, who works for Brazong. Richards offered all types of little-known facts about the dark liquor.
“Something like 98-99 percent of all bourbon is produced in Kentucky,” he said. “It has to be 51 percent or more corn or it cannot be called Bourbon.”
The liquor ranged in alcohol proofs from 80 to 94 and Richards explained the original meaning behind the term "proof" as well.
“You had to prove its alcohol content so that’s just become part of the lingo,” he said. “You had to prove exactly what it was.”
Brazong said the tasting was an important kind of event because it helps to build a relationship with local residents.
“They have a million questions and they’re having fun and they’re really into it,” she said. “You come away feeling good and knowing these people will become your clients and they will come to you if they need a gift, if they need a present. They trust you.”