Treasure Hunting Like a Pirate

Treasure Hunting Like a Pirate

For whatever reason, humans seem engineered to seek out discoveries, new ideas, and treasure. To boldly drink where no man has drunk before! Indeed, it seems like having something to chase after and dream about is almost more important than obtaining the thing itself. Why else would movies about chasing perfection be continually appealing?

A rare vintage picture of a delivery by Amazon's PrimeSoon service, circa 1908

A rare vintage picture of a delivery by Amazon's PrimeSoon service, circa 1908

In this age of being able to have damn near anything delivered directly to your door, the thrill of the chase can be somewhat lacking. There is little opportunity to chat with a booze purveyor and discover something new and original. And, even when you do discover something new, it seems readily available, if not at your corner store, than through multiple booze-delivery websites. (At least until the Bourbon Drought hits for reals. But that’s another article.) What we, as humans, and as boozers delight in, is the Search for Spock Spirits!

It is delightful to have a bottle that is perpetually on your wish list, a bottle that your eyes search for whenever you enter a new liquor store, a bottle that, when you catch sight of its unique label, fills you with electric anticipation. Perhaps that bottle is hard to find because it’s expensive and you have to save up and price compare and dream of winning the lottery before you could ever begin to think of spending that much money on a single bottle. Perhaps, the bottle is rare, either through being part of a small-lot distribution or being old enough that only a few bottles remain in the world. If this were the case, you might find yourself dropping in on all of the out of the way liquor stores and out of stock clearance aisles, hoping to recognize your prize amongst all of the dusty labels.

Yarrrr! A toast to Tom Kelley and Getty Images!

For me, keeping a burning ember of hope alive every time I walk into a liquor store adds a special something to the very mundane experience of buying a bottle. Treasure can be found anywhere and in the most unlikely of places. I once found two bottles of Firestone Walker Anniversary X in a dingy grocery store outside of Trinity Lake, CA. Both bottles were on sale for $5.00. Currently, I am on an unending treasure hunt for St. George’s Single Malt Whiskey. Only about 3000 bottles are released each year, which makes it possible to find a bottle out in the wild, but you have to work to find a bottle available and at a price you can actually afford.

And, once you find your chosen treasure bottle, the quest isn’t even over! You get to drink your bottle, feel the warm flush of accomplishment, and then start your search all over again.

There is unlimited treasure for us to find, enjoy, and find again. Search for your treasure, my friends, and I hope that the search provides years of anticipation for all of you booze hounds.

Jeff has been a professional writer, bartender, and clown, sometimes all at once. He grew up along California's central coast before disappearing into the wilds of San Francisco. He appeared sporadically in those foggy mists as a featured artist for the Ramshackle Farm art gallery, a founding writer for Mockery Press, and an actor and clown on the Embarcadero and in a number of local theater companies. He tended bar in a range of dive bars before heading East to travel Europe and drink in those sights, and he does mean "drink". After his bank account and his liver required a break, he dropped back into the City and was astonished at how much rents had gone up. 

Jeff currently resides in San Francisco and is the proud protector of two apartment-sized animals and a rent controlled apartment lease.