To profess that I miss Chip every moment of every day would be an understatement. I deal with the loss differently depending on the situation. Most days, I struggle, and then I have moments of clarity, smiling at the prospect of reaching him even though he is not physically here with me. Chip loved a nice whiskey, rye, or bourbon on a weekend evening by a fire after dinner, no matter the season. Hmmm, and I began to plan…
The first time Chip tasted Whistle Pig, we were in Vermont to take a cooking class at King Arthur Flour. We were spending the night at The Lyme Inn in New Hampshire. After the exhaustion of baking class, stiff and precise, we returned to this romantic inn and ventured into the lounge. There, in that small and cozy bar, the bartender suggested that Chip try a pour of Whistle Pig. The rest is history.
I love to take Chip on adventures, usually in the small urn in my purse, aka. Chip on The Go. However, this trip was worthy of the entire urn, and I planned an outing to bring Chip to Whistle Pig’s tasting room in Quechee, VT. I engaged Amelia and Nick, aka Skates, to accompany me to Quechee. I packed Chip’s urn in my trusty backpack, and off we went to Vermont.
Let the tasting begin!
I made reservations for noon on Saturday, and in typical Vermont fashion, we began right on time. We perused the menu of tasting flights and placed our orders. While waiting for the flights to be brought to the table, I took Chip’s urn and placed him prominently in view. We raised a glass or two to him as we sampled the options, and it could not have been more perfect. My heart was so conflicted with pain and love, and I was thankful for Amelia and Nick to be there to share it with me.
We purchased a few bottles and some of the tasting glasses. Chatting with the young ladies at the register, I shared my secret and told them about Chip, his urn on the table, and his love for their spirits. They were so kind, and their hugs were so sincere and warm; I was forever moved. (Thank You.)
Quechee, Vermont, is a gem.
If you have not heard of or visited Quechee, Vermont, you are truly missing out. Just down the road from picturesque Woodstock, Vermont, is Quechee Village, with its extraordinary natural attractions, traditional charm, accommodations, and dining—home to Simon Pierce glass blowers, the Quechee Gorge, and Whistle Pig’s tasting room.
We honeymooned in Quechee, diverted from the Caribbean due to the devastation left by Hurricane Hugo. Little did we know that we would spend countless romantic weekends there and a few more than memorable trips with the kids. I took Amelia and Nick to the townhouse we once rented as young honeymooners. The memories were so intense; they were very emotional, and images of Chip flooded our thoughts. Bringing him here was a perfect idea.
Vermont has always been a special place for us.
Chip and his urn have traveled to Vermont with me to experience a burger and beer at Zoey’s Double Hex and a divine maple cookie at the Sugar Shack. As I have mentioned, knowing that Chip is in that urn and not speeding along the windy roads of Vermont in his S4 is unbearable. Some may judge my actions as unusual or sad, but they are not blue for me. I am trying to find my way through this life without him. My sorrow is more about the things Chip is missing than anything else.
I do not know where the next adventure will take us. It has been a while since I have taken him somewhere that I know he would have volunteered to go. I am giving that some significant thought, and I will keep you informed.
Raise a glass to Chip the next time you hold a drink in your hand. I know he can see it.
What is Whistle Pig?
Well, my dear readers, if you must ask, you are missing out on a truly splendid experience. Here is what they have to say about themselves, and I must say, it is an understatement: “Free from the industry rules and status quo, we bring great whiskey to the people without being limited by old conventions that have kept Rye Whiskey from living up to its true potential. Always brimming with new ideas, the WhistlePig team focuses on audacious experimentation, big age statements, and bold experiments. After meticulous renovation and care, we transformed a 150-year-old dairy barn into the world’s most unique whiskey-making distillery. We distill seven days a week, working round the clock to bring you Whiskey as complex, rare, and uncommon as the place where it is daringly made.” To this statement, I raise a glass.
If you choose to experience Whistle Pig, make a reservation and tell them Chip sent you.