For starters, women have been involved with whiskey making since the beginning of time. It’s all right there in Fred Minnick’s book, Whiskey Women: The Untold Story of How Women Saved Bourbon, Scotch, and Irish Whiskey. In fact, the cover photo is of women in front of the Labrot and Graham Distillery, now Woodford Reserve.
The fact that women drink bourbon, too, has been put to rest. Even Jimmy Russell, Master Distiller of Wild Turkey, said at the Bourbon Classic earlier this year, “It used to be older, Southern Gentlemen drinking Bourbon. Now it’s everybody.” I also recently wrote about women and bourbon for my friends The Bourbon Guys.
There was even this story in the Huffington Post last fall, in which writer Rebecca Orchant exasperatedly proclaimed, “These headlines probably look familiar: Whiskey: Not Just For Men Anymore!, 10 Things Every Woman Should Know About Whiskey, Women Who Love Whiskey. We'd like to officially express to everyone, all at once: we're good on these kinds of articles. We've written all of them. They don't need to be conceived, pitched or executed ever again. So, to be clear, women drink whiskey. Also men drink whiskey. Other things we also both drink include water, beer, wine, juice, gin, tequila, on and on into infinity.”
But this concept seems to have escaped some people, and now we have these silly ads from Woodford to prove it. This one, released during Mad Men on Sunday night, sounds kind of fun and cute. That is, until you get to the part about men not doing math and women not knowing how to use a saw. I took two years of wood shop in high school. To say that was the point when my jaw dropped would be an understatement.
This one, which doesn’t look to have been released yet, is just bizarre. She knows how to tell a story without giving up the details? Wow, that’s, um, hot?
There are other ads on the horizon. For now I'm going to hope they put their worst one out there first.
Every company has a bad marketing campaign from time to time. With all the other good stuff Woodford is doing right now, this is likely to disappear from everyone’s radar about three Premium Mint Juleps into Derby.
Photos Courtesy of Woodford Reserve's Facebook Page