J.R. Ewing Bourbon Launch

It was a stormy Monday night on 18 August 2014 and while all Sydney was safe and sound at home, the stars of legendary US TV show Dallas, Patrick Duffy and Linda Gray – alias Bobby and Sue Ellen Ewing – were at the US-themed Kings Cross hotel, The Bourbon Sydney, for the launch party of J.R. Ewing Bourbon.For those of you who are too young to know, Dallas was a long-running American prime time television soap opera that aired from 2 April 1978 to 3 May 1991. The series revolves around a wealthy and feuding Texan family, the Ewings, who own the independent oil company Ewing Oil and the cattle-ranching land of Southfork. The shows main character was the oil tycoon J.R. Ewing whose schemes and dirty business became the show’s trademark. The show was famous for its cliffhangers including ‘Who shot J.R.?’ and ‘Who Done It?’.

The bourbon is named in honour of the show’s patriarch, J.R. Ewing, played by Larry Hagman who passed away on 23 November 2012. This four-year-old, 80-proof J.R. Ewing Bourbon comes in bottles featuring a screen-printed image of the show’s ranch, Southfork.

The party was a rare chance to rub shoulders with Gray and Duffy on their brief promotional trip to Sydney. Unlike most other celebrities who make brief appearances at events, these stars stayed for most of the night, and were available to talk and be photographed with guests.

Guests were spoilt with American style canapes consisting of:
• Cajun spiced steak tartar on toast
• Marinated tuna with avocado and wasabi
• Spanner crab taco, smoky sweet potato, chives
• Spicy beetroot and goat cheese tartlets, caramelised walnuts
• Bernie sliders with cheese, bacon, mustard and ketchup
• Jambalaya Arancini, spices, bacon, shrimp
• Fried Chicken bites, buttermilk marinade devilled sauce
• Grilled prawn cutlets, chipotle butter, peperoni mayo
• Mini banoffee pie
• Golden Beignets, bourbon late custard

Cocktails were all Dallas/Texas themed including the:
• The Dallas J. R. Ewing Bourbon with black tea syrup, fresh mint and lime charged with ginger beer
• Mile High J. R. Ewing Bourbon with fresh custard apple juice, vanilla syrup, cinnamon and a dash of Cinzano Bianco
• Vanilla Julep J. R. Ewing Bourbon with fresh mint and vanilla syrup stirred over crushed ice and topped with soda
• The High Roller J. R. Ewing Bourbon with bitters and fresh orange peel, stirred over ice and served old fashion style.

So instead of pondering about ‘Who shot J.R.?’ as viewers did in the final scene of the 1979-1980 season, enjoy a shot of J.R. Ewing Bourbon that can be enjoyed neat as well as in a cocktail.

And for all those young ones out there, there is a continuation of the Dallas TV series that has been on air since 2012 where Patrick Duffy and Linda Gray are joined by the next generation of characters.

— with Nada Ninkovicand 3 others at The Bourbon Sydney.

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