The Drinking Habits Of The Hammer Of The Witches
Whisky's quicker for Clay McNab
Cowboys and whisky.
That was one of the first thoughts that popped into my head when I started thinking about creating a fictional world from scratch.
That thought eventually manifested into one of the main protagonists of The Tales Of The Frontier series: Clay McNab, a legendary witch hunter and one of the most decorated members of The Questers. (The more you read the newsletter, the more you’ll get to know McNab’s backstory.)
I’m of the opinion that you can get some real insight into a person based on what they drink and witch-hunting is definitely thirsty work for McNab.
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Here are some of the bottles McNab would be partial to. (If they existed in his world. He’s a BIG whisky drinker).
Gun Fighter Bourbon Whisky
A spirits man, McNab would have an appreciation for bourbon and he’d pour himself a glass of Gun Fighter from the Golden Moon Distillery.
He’d see himself reflected in the label and while sipping the whisky, McNab would be reminded of all the gun fights he’d been through over the years and the actions that earned him the nickname The Hammer Of The Witches.
High West American Prairie Bourbon
The next bourbon on McNab’s list is American Prairie from the High West Distillery. With spicy, sweet notes, this whisky would appeal to his taste buds.
It’d also remind McNab of all the times he’d rode across the sprawling planes of The Frontier, evoking a rugged individualism and romanticism that he felt in his younger days.
Maker’s Mark Whisky
When it comes to whisky, McNab likes reliability. A good, solid spirit that he can sip in a dark saloon and listen to music with. Maker’s Mark is the right whisky for the job. Savoury and sweet, this whisky is something McNab would drink like water.
Cask 88 31-Year-Old Nuckelavee Single Malt Whisky
After knocking back bourbon, McNab would want to change it up and select a whisky that had bite and resonance. He’d choose the 31-year-old Orkney single malt from Cask 88. The whisky also carries the symbol of the Orcadian demon Nuckelavee, a foul creature that looks like a giant flayed horse with a man attached to the body.
One of McNab’s most difficult contracts involved him stopping a nuckelavee with the help of his mentor Bram Fitzgerald.
Bringing the demon down was one of McNab’s finest moments and drinking the whisky would be a way to remind himself of the triumph and to be vigilant against other creatures of the dark.
The whisky itself was distilled at Highland Park distillery. Starting life in a refilled sherry cask, the spirit was finished in a Rivesaltes fortified French wine hogshead.
The Norfolk Parched Single Grain Whisky
Another whisky McNab would gravitate towards is the well-respected The Norfolk Parched Single Grain.
Distilled by The English Whisky Company, The Norfolk Parched is a rich and complex spirit with peach, toffee, grapefruit and dry notes.
Appleton 12-Year Rum
As well as being a whisky fan, McNab is also partial to rum. Especially rum that has a good reputation and he’d find plenty to enjoy with a bottle of Appleton 12-years. Matured in oak casks, this rum has fruity and sweet expressions of chocolate and molasses.
It’d be a worthy palate cleanser for The Hammer Of The Witches.
Marsh House Rum
On The Frontier, rum is classed as the drink of the common man and the highest concentration of rum distilleries is found in Deepstead Province.
A marshy, tropical region, Deepstead has the ideal climate for producing rum and McNab has had many adventures throughout that part of the world.
A rum to remind him of Deepstead would be Marsh House. This rum has bright, floral notes that crackle with cola, caramel and vanilla.
Espolon Blanco Tequila
When it comes to alcohol, McNab is open-minded and he’d certainly have an appreciation for tequila.
A good choice is Espolon Blanco, a blue agave spirit distilled in Los Altos by The San Nicolas Distillery.
With an eye-catching label, Espolon would agree with McNab’s taste buds. Zesty, citrusy and potent.
Cazadores Anejo Cristalino
For a sipping tequila, McNab would be partial to the Cazadores Anejo Cristalino. Made from blue agave harvested in Jalisco, Mexico, the tequila has been aged in American oak barrels.
The result? A heady drink with spicy notes of apple, wood and nuts. McNab would also enjoy the packaging, as the stag is an animal he associates with strength and speed.
As a Quester, McNab has roamed all over The Frontier and been exposed to all kinds of cultures and drinks. One culture he’s very familiar with is the kamuni, who have their own indigenous drinks called tinek and burash.
Over the years, McNab has drunk plenty of tinek and burash with his friend Itsano and a spirit that would remind him of burash is shochu.
An ideal shochu for The Hammer Of The Witches is Kariu, a barley spirit produced by the Bungo Meijyo brewery in Japan.
Elegant, mild and soft, the Kariu would be a suitable finishing drink to help McNab take the edge off.
What do you think of McNab’s drink choices? Does he have good choices or would you avoid drinking with him?