Dear Garden and Gun Magazine,
Years ago as a member of the U.S. Air Force we would have fun breaking in the newbies by asking them to fetch some “special” items. We gave them names that made them seem as though they were tangible objects but were actually imaginary and impossible to find. We would have them running all over the base asking people where they might find a “box of grid squares” or a “spool of flight line”. The joke was always on them but provided an opportunity for some fun at minimal expense to anyone’s ego.
I am obligated to inform you that you now bear the distinct honor of creating a new item for similar amusement. A true and new oxymoron indeed. The recipe for Strawberry Moonshine Fried Pies from your Fried and True article, calls for 3 teaspoons of “commercial moonshine”. By its very definition “moonshine” is an illicit distillation so throwing the word “commercial” on it is an affront to the heritage of all of those Appalachian distillers who produced and distributed their whisky by the light of the moon. I realize you probably meant the legal product that would be similar in proof to the high percentage generally found in moonshine. You could have mentioned it rather that over extend yourselves in an attempt to make a proud, off the grid product more accessible to the masses. You extend the outrage further once you listed grappa as a possible substitute. Grape residue could never stand in for corn squeezin’s! As a magazine that seeks to uncover the best of the south and southern heritage, I hereby formally wag my finger at you for it even being mentioned. I’m sure there is a good story behind the reasons for it, and I’m happy to listen. To quote your editor in chief from the same issue, “Because as any good Southerner knows, some of the best stories get told in the kitchen”. I dare David DiBenedetto to find “commercial moonshine” or grappa in a traditional southern kitchen.
That would be some story!-- Keep up the otherwise stellar work!