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The NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias – Old Fashioned Week and The Southern Smoke Foundation – 2023Ep7 – Lynn House of Elijah Craig and Heaven Hill and Caroline Nabors of the Southern Smoke Foundation.

Pictured above – Happenings at the Old Fashioned Week 2023 preview event at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans. Lower right panel, from left – Lynn House of Elijah Craig and Heaven Hill and Caroline Nabors of the Southern Smoke Foundation. Some images courtesy of the Tales of the Cocktail Foundation and Foxglove Communications.

On this edition of The NOLADrinks Show, we’re once again talking Elijah Craig’s Old Fashioned Week happening from October 13th thru the 22nd! It’s easy to participate as either a hospitality spot or as a patron and it’s all a benefit for the wonderful Southern Smoke Foundation, supporting the hospitality industry. We welcome Lynn House, national spirits specialist and portfolio mixologist for Heaven Hill, and Caroline Nabors, director of marketing and development for Southern Smoke.

Having done so last year around this time, we’re happy to revisit Old Fashioned Week! The event supports the Southern Smoke Foundation. They support the hospitality industry with two major programs – an emergency relief fund and mental health and wellness for industry workers. Caroline tells us about the foundation and the important work that they do.

We also discuss how Old Fashioned Week works and Lynn let’s us know why Heaven Hill (of which the Elijah Craig brand is a part) has chosen to make Southern Smoke the event’s beneficiary two years in a row. In short, all you have to do is visit a participating bar in the US or Canada – there are a bunch! Visit their website to find one (or many) near you. Then, simply order an Old Fashioned and one dollar of the proceeds will go to the charity. It’s that easy and it’s a great way to not only support a great cause but also support local bars and restaurants at the same time! Also, if you represent a venue, you can still get involved and we let you know how!

As we joke during the interview, it’s hard to imagine anyone who listens to this show not knowing what an Old Fashioned is! But Lynn gives us a rundown on its history and how it is the true definition of a “cocktail.” We even chat about some season-appropriate variations of this classic drink. She also lets us know a bit about the Elijah Craig story and its importance in the history of Bourbon and American whiskey.

So, check out the episode and then get out there, hit your local participating hospitality spot, get an Old Fashioned, and do some good all while having fun!

Cheers and Be Well, You All!

~ Bryan