Since The Transcendental Dram is more about the whisky experience than the product, here is how Ralph Steadman, a celebrated illustrator and great storyteller, shows and tells us about Hunter Thompson’s first whisky experience.
I introduced my friend, the writer and Gonzo journalist, Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, to Glenfiddich, as a gift, in 1973 when we were in Zaire to celebrate ‘the rumble in the jungle’, the fight between George Foreman and Mohammed Ali. That was the first time he had ever tasted a single malt. Wild Turkey and Rebel Yell had been more his kind of tipple until then. He sold our tickets on the very night of the fight, took the bottle and a 10 pound bag of African marijuana down to the pool’s edge. He set the Glenfiddich down carefully next to a silver bucket of ice and hurled the marijuana into the pool. Then he dived into the middle of it. He spent the time during the fight floating about, watching the marijuana disappearing down the filter, whilst he sipped at the Glenfiddich through a handsome govlet full office. I never forgave him. That’s no way to drink Glenfiddich.