View Full Version : Raymond Chandler, Detective Stories & American Whiskey

08-19-2009, 18:18
I've been reading a lot of Raymond Chandler books lately, which are mysteries from the 30's, 40's & 50's featuring P.I. Phillip Marlowe, immortalized in the film, The Big Sleep by Humphrey Bogart.

Anyway, these books make me thirsty!!!

Chandler mentions Old Grand-dad, Old Taylor and Mt. Vernon Rye by name, but over the course of these books, he regularly makes references to classic whiskey. The characters in the books always mention "that good bonded bourbon" and make a big deal about what good whiskey the BIB is. Plus, I love how rye is mentioned so frequently. Also mentioned is a green-labeled rye (which may very well also be Mt. Vernon). That Marlowe is a bourbon drinker just endears me to him even more . . . to read these little details about whiskey "back in the day" makes me happy . . . and jealous -- wish I could have a slug of that Mt. Vernon along with ya, Marlowe!

08-20-2009, 10:07
Oh, and he also mentions Four Roses by name.

08-20-2009, 11:24
I've read a lot of pulp fiction and hard boiled crime paperbacks.
A lot of whiskey drinking going on.
As far as brands go I.W.Harper gets mentioned in Charles Willeford's first book High Priest Of California.
Philadelphia blended whiskey gets a mention in one of the Parker books by Richard Stark.

I just remembered another one, Earl Drake drinks Jim Beam in the series by Dan J Marlowe.

BTW Willeford and Marlow are my favorites.

08-20-2009, 12:28
Hmmm ... I'm going to have to go back and re-read those with a new eye. I do remember that in the Thin Man (Dashiell Hammett) the characters all drink a lot and that was during Prohibition!