|A tragic yet funny thing happened when we were traveling around Kentucky bourbon country. I bought several bottles of various bourbons and put them in the hatchback area of the rental car. I left them in there overnight and the next day while we hung out with some friends.
When I went to get something from the car the next evening, I was met with a thick, unbearable cloud of alcohol scent. It was like an alcohol explosion in my sinuses. What had happened was that one of the bottles popped its cork stopper and spilled half its contents onto the fabric of the rental car. Not only did it pop its top, it popped its top through the plastic seal that held the cork in place. That's some energetic ethanol!
I was bummed that I spilled some good whiskey and wasted some money. But the real issue was that our rental car smelled unmistakably like alcohol, which isn't a good thing for a motor vehicle to smell like. So I opened the windows and let everything air out overnight, and I even sprayed Febreze on the mats and let them dry in the sun.
When we got in the car to continue on our journey, the smell was still definitely there. I was hoping maybe some fresh air at 70 mph would help the situation, or maybe air conditioning would magically clean things up. After driving for a few hours, the smell seemed to have vanished. But every time we left the car and re-entered, it was back. Thankfully, the alcohol smell had vanished, and it left in its place the sweet, smokey, caramel aroma of finely aged bourbon. Certainly an improvement over the new-car small of a rental car!
I contacted the bourbon company and told them my sad story, and they were actually apologetic about the packaging failure and offered me a refund! In return I told them I'd tell this story as an homage to them and their generosity. So thanks, Wild Turkey! Russell's Reserve 10 Year Old is some damn fine bourbon.