This past weekend I hopped into my ruby-red-lipstick minivan (you know, for the mom who tells herself she’s still “got it all going on”), and drove to my hometown of Baraboo, WI. My best friend since childhood, Oliver, decided it was about time that he graced us with his yearly visit back to his homeland of Wisconsin. So basically this weekend was a non-stop celebration of cheese, fried cheese (very different), and, of course, the traditional, Wisconsin Old Fashioned.
I also had the pleasure of spending some quality time with my adopted sister, and biological twin, Emma. Oliver, Emma, and I had so much fun drinking together, discussing life’s most pressing questions, spilling secrets, and engaging in customary small town gossip. We also had a few moments of time left over to adventure a little.
The whole fam (ps- I’m an honorary Horjus.) went out to the Wollersheim distillery in Prairie du Sac. Oliver’s mom gives tours there on the weekends, and she treated us to the delight of watching her perform, while we snagged a few drinks of course. *over exaggerated wink*
Honestly, I’m not one much for sipping hard liquor neat, so I was a little nervous about how much I would actually enjoy a distillery tour. I figured there would at least be a couple that I would have to forcibly choke down. However, to my welcomed surprise, it was incredible. The liquor was fantastic. There wasn’t a single thing I tasted and didn’t love.
The huge stills used to create the alcohol were also really interesting. I was really an eye opening experience into just how much work it takes to ferment vats of fruit, and distill them down into something consumable, much less tasty. I think my favorite part of the tour, besides the sampling obviously, was hearing about how dangerous chemicals, such as acetone, are removed from the fermented slew. It definitely gave me more respect for the brewing profession. If they slack on the job, all of a sudden your cocktail turns into chemical throat burns.
Afterwards, we had the most delicious cocktails. My favorite liquor that I sampled was the gin (which just floored me, because I have never liked gin in my life), so I got a gin and tonic mixed with a raspberry rose puree. It was called a Rose Garden, and Emma graced me with the best compliment I have ever, and will ever be given. She told me, “Of course you ordered that, because you are a rose garden.”
I almost teared up with joy.
We all sat outside on the patio and enjoyed our fancy cocktails. We chatted and traded glasses to enjoy another sampling of what the distillery had to offer. Yet again, to my absolute amazement, I actually liked Emma and Oliver’s Old Fashioned’s better than my Rose Garden.
Honest to God, I don’t even truly believe what happened next. Oliver, Emma and I returned to the distillery for the sole purpose of buying a bottle of brandy. This is insane. I was literally on the ground of a winery, and I bought brandy instead. That evening the three of us drank the it neat. I was just sucking down brandy like there was no tomorrow. It was so damn good.
If, in the morning, you had told me I would be drinking brandy straight from the bottle that very evening, I would have called you a liar.
The next day we ended up lazing around the house, perusing old yearbooks, and discovering the utility of dry shampoo. Of course, everyday in the Horjus household is a non-stop thrill ride, so we spent the better half of the afternoon…
Wait for it…
I want you to guess…
Really, I mean it…
I won’t tell you until you guess…
Fine. I’ll tell you anyway.
We built a model car.
I was reluctant at first. Given my history with activities of this nature, it might not have been the best idea. In the past, instruction pamphlets have been known to trigger me into fits of spontaneous rage, but it truly was adorable watching these two bond over their almost compulsive need for order and structure.
See! How cute!
Also… for no reason whatsoever… I wasn’t allow to touch the glue.
Featured Photo Credit: Anne, Arms-So-Long-He-Doesn’t-Need-a-Selfie-Stick, Horjus