Tuesday, December 11, 2012

What is Peanut Lolita

I was recently looking for liquor ads from the 1960's and 1970's trying to find cocktail recipes of those eras and came across the following ad. Now I have to admit, I was intrigued. Apparently Peanut Lolita is a Peanut flavored liqueur and based on the ad, layering it with various ice creams makes an amazing parfait. Now, I'm not sure about that but I decided to dig a little deeper to find out how Peanut Lolita was received.

I decided to look into Jason Wilson's Spirit Blogpage on the Washington Post website for more information. Wilson is the author of Boozehounds: On the Trail of the Rare, the Obscure, and the Overrated in Spirits which is a book that I have used numerous times in other posts. Jason and his brother Tyler often engage in what they call Liquor Store Archaeology in which they look for the most obscure liquors that they can find. In his blogpost entitled A Flowery Find That Left Us in the Dust dated April 2, 2008 Wilson describes the finding of Peanut Lolita in the following manner:
So Tyler became the clear victor not too long ago when he turned up something called, somewhat disturbingly, Peanut Lolita, a thick, peanut-flavored liqueur that once was produced by Continental Distilling in Linfield, Pa. The logo and fonts on the label suggest the early 1960s, but according to what little research exists, Peanut Lolita was still around in the mid-1970s, when infamous presidential brother Billy Carter "often made drunken appearances" with the liqueur's spokesmodel, according to an essay by Christopher S. Kelley in "Life in the White House: A Social History of the First Family and the President's House" (SUNY Press, 2004)
We may now own the only two bottles of Peanut Lolita left in existence. Due to the liqueur's overwhelming whiskey-and-peanut taste and grainy texture -- not to mention its unfortunate name -- it is unlikely to make a comeback anytime soon. But Tyler has created a respectable drink with the stuff: He layers ice-cold Peanut Lolita and raspberry-flavored Chambord in a cordial glass and calls it a PB&J.
I found even more information on Peanut Lolita from the blogpost entitled Peanut Lolita: A Liqueur Lost in Time from the Liquid Culture Project website. The author goes into how Billy Carter was the official spokesperson for the liqueur while his brother Jimmy Carter was the President of the United States. Imagine the outrage if President Obama had a drunken brother hawking booze as a spokesperson. My how things have changed politically in this country. But, getting back to the Peanut Lolita. The author cracked open the bottle he found and described the liqueur as follows:
So, what of the liquid? Well, it’s thick—real thick–syrupy thick with a rich, auburn hue. The ad’s proclamation of topping ice cream and the bottle’s suggestion of topping jelly-filled crepes should give you an indication of just how thick this stuff is. Man, does it carry a wallop of roasted peanut, though, with a strong backbone of good bourbon to carry it forward (the aging may have helped this, actually), and a tinge of wood. Shockingly, it’s not cloyingly sweet, but isn’t exactly something you’ll want to refresh with on a warm, summer day.
So, has anyone out there ever had a taste of the Peanut Lolita? If you have, I'd like to know. Now where can I find some so I can taste it. Any ideas?

Until Then, Happy Drinking.