Around Aspen: Fish House Punch
A big party every Christmas season is the Fish House Punch party given at the St. Regis Resort Aspen by a group of party-loving Aspen gentlemen. Fish House Punch was Colonial America’s most legendary concoction, invented in 1732 by members of the Fish House Club at Philadelphia’s Fish House Tavern on the Schuylkill River. Don the Beachcomber passed the recipe on to the Aspen hosts who included Don Crawford, W.T. Ray, Ron Krajian, Al Mayfield, Jim Ellis, Sid Hendrick, Jack Crawford, Steve Nardi, Fran Hoffman, Chuck Yeramian, Jack Cronin, Hal Craft and Peter Belski.In the Open Range section of the February issue of Cowboys & Indians magazine, Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey was named in Best of the West. The item recounts how the whiskey was born when volunteer firefighter Jess Graber responded to a fire at the barn of photographer, rancher, social activist and liquor connoisseur George Stranahan. The two bonded over their love of whiskey and soon, from the ashes of Stranahan’s barn, rose Colorado’s first microdistillery.Former Aspenite and writer Mark Shaw was back in town this week, accompanying monk Thomas Merton for a booksigning at Explore Booksellers of his new biography, “Beneath the Mask of Holiness: Thomas Merton and the forbidden love affair that set him free.” Mark has completed seminary studies in California and is now living near Boulder.Another new book is “How the West Was Warmed” edited by Beth Conover and including essays about climate change from more than 40 journalists, scientists, business people and policy makers. The first essay is from Auden Schendler, sustainability director for the Aspen Skiing Company.After the new points-based scoring system was adopted by the International Skating Union, many male figure skaters stopped doing the four-rotation jump … however Aspen native and skating champ Jeremy Abbott performed a quad at the nationals to win his second straight title. Abbott is considered a top contender for an Olympic gold medal next month in Vancouver.Undercurrent…The willows are golden against the snow.
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Normalcy will be few and far between this ski season, so Aspen’s Simi Hamilton’s traditional slow start brought a sense of calm to a world that’s mostly in chaos at the moment.