Christian and I, being consenting responsible adults, can be grouped among that small demographic of American males who like beer. That said...Pat: Hey buddy...what do you think about the Reinheitsgebot?
Christian: Oh... uh, yeah I love that stuff. So tasty and smooth. Goes great with just about any food. Mmmmm.... Reinheitsgebot. Yum.
Pat: No...THE Reinheitsgebot, silly. It’s not a foodstuff. It’s the German purity law of 1516 that strictly dictates what may go into German beer (if it is to still be called “German” beer). Ringing any bells?
Christian: Oh that law of 1516. I see.
Actually, I don’t.
I don’t think I have ever heard of this law. It’s German you say? What’s the punishment if you break it? Because at some point in my life I may have stated that “This is the greatest German beer I have ever had!” while holding a bowl of rice krispies. Am I in some kind of trouble now?
Pat: Yup, you’re toast! But only if you set foot on German soil.
I think about the Reinheitsgebot at least thrice annually, and this last time I had a couple of accompanying thoughts. First, you’d think the German nation would be a little wary of any laws containing the word “purity”. Whatever. Kudos to them, I suppose, for overcoming historical stigmas.
Secondly, though, I got a little jealous. The Germans have a law distinguishing their beer. The French have baguette and champagne. Italy has the DOC designation. Mexico has taco vans. What do we have? Wouldn’t it be kinda’ cool if we had a chicken nugget purity law?
Christian: Well, I’ve got some good news for you. The other day I was doing some research on Bourbon, for uh... science, and learned that to legally be called a Bourbon it has to have been made in the United States. So does that make you feel better?
And as an extra bonus, Bourbon goes great with chicken nuggets. At least according to my science.
Aaaah, Bourbon. So awe-inspiring and majestic.
It’s like a bald eagle made of alcohol.
Pat: Yeah, I suppose that helps...bourbon and chicken nuggets? That’s what we’ve got? Perhaps not as steeped in tradition and national pride as the Reinheitsgebot, but I could get behind it. Imagine if every kid’s meal came with a seal ensuring that the nuggets they were about to eat were formed in accordance with the American Nugget Purity Law of 1979?
Mmm...government assured purity!
Christian: Yeah that would be cool. We could model it after the legal requirements for Bourbon. For example, the nuggets would have to have an alcohol content of at least 40%. Oh wait, you were talking with regards to kid’s meals. Maybe 15% then. What else?
Pat: No, I was thinking that the actual nuggets would have a stamp embossed in them. That way the fast food joints wouldn’t be able to sneak an imposter nugget in there. And I bet the alcohol would burn off in the frying, leaving only the delightful flavor and aroma of pure American bourbon for the kids to enjoy in their pure American nuggets! This is sounding really good!
Christian: Pat, when you have a great idea you have a great idea. Now what kind of sauces are we talking about? I think there should also be some purity with regards to the sauce too.
Obviously it will also be made up of 15% bourbon, but should we go with BBQ? Sweet n’ sour? (I know sweet n’ sour is typically an Asian thing but I really like it).
Honey mustard? Or were you thinking we would just use bourbon as a sauce?
Pat: Bourbon sauce sounds awesome! But you know what sounds awesomer? What about a Cherry-Orange sauce for an Old Fashioned nugget experience? Or a Vermouth-Bitters sauce for a Manhattan nugget explosion in your mouth? I am REALLY liking where this is going...”drinks you can eat”! People could gorge themselves, and what could be more American than combining a drinking problem with an eating disorder?
Christian: Nothing is the answer to that question. So are we thinking our nugget purity law will just require the sauce to be alcoholic? Doesn’t matter which alcohol as along as it contains alcohol?
What are we going to call this great nugget purity law of 2012? Reinheitsgebot is an OK name for the beer one but if you ask me it sounds a little too German.
Pat: I’m no expert in deep fat frying, but I don’t know if there is a way to simultaneously cook the nugget AND maintain the alcohol in the bourbon. Maybe if we used some of that technology like in Freshen-up Gum™, where we could encapsulate a little shot of bourbon inside a digestible polymer inside the nugget meat...maybe then we could do it! Imagine shoving a whole nugget in your mouth, enjoying a few chews, and then--KAPOW!!!--a shot of flamin’ hot bourbon bursts down your gullet!
Uh-oh...someone might have beaten us to the concept!
Now it’s like we’ve combined a drinking problem with an eating disorder with a fraternity-derived means for dangerous living!
God I love our country!
A name, though? Hmm...how about the “Keeping It Gross and American Ordinance of 2012”?
Christian: Hmm... The KIGAO of 2012 huh? How about the “Keeping It Certifiably Killer, American Style, Statute”. Or KICKASS!