Remember that gorgeous bottle of bourbon that sat on the table in J.R. Ewing's room at Southfork, the one his brother, Bobby; son, John Ross; and, sadly, alcoholic ex-wife, Sue Ellen, have imbibed from since the rascally former oil baron's death on "Dallas" this season?
Soon enough, "Dallas" fans will be able to do some imbibing of their own, as the powers that be at the show and a Texas liquor distributor have teamed up to make a J.R. Ewing bourbon that will go on sale this fall.
"I have one on my desk, but it's unopened, and the bourbon in it is not the bourbon that's going to be in the real bottle. This was just for presentation purposes, but it's nice," "Dallas" executive producer Cynthia Cidre tells Yahoo! TV. "I look at it every day. It's awesome, with that little J.R. Ewing signature on it. It's a good idea."
And will it look just like the one we've seen during some of the most emotional moments of Season 2?
"Exactly. It will look exactly like that," Cidre says. "It has a wood cork, and it has that etching. Then, if you look through the bottle, which I don't think you can see on the show, you can actually see Southfork on the back of the bottle."
The liquor's journey to that table at Southfork, and to stores, began with Texas liquor distributor Bennett Glazer and his wife, Marion, who are big fans of the series.
"One of the perks of being on the show, a very large perk for [executive producer] Mike Robin and myself and the cast and people who work on 'Dallas,' is that when we go to Dallas, they're lovely people," Cidre says. "The people of Texas have just been incredibly welcoming to us, and we've met a lot of interesting people. One of the people we've met is Bennett Glazer, who owns the fourth-largest liquor distributor in the country. He and his wife are such huge fans of the show … they visit [the set], and we've been to their house for dinner.
"They had already prepared this bottle of bourbon. They never asked. They just presented it to us, and they said we'd like to offer you a business proposition. They made the pitch to us; we loved the bottle. Mike and I brought a couple of bottles back to Warner Bros. and gave them out and made the pitch for them. Then the rest was done between them and lawyers and [executives]. Then I just integrated it into the show."
The liquor tie-in is a fine tribute to the character, though Hagman was open about his own issues with alcohol. The late actor often told interviewers he drank up to five bottles of champagne a day while filming the original "Dallas" series. After learning he had liver problems in 1992 -- "Clearly there is all the reason in the world for me to have cirrhosis," he told People magazine -- Hagman stopped drinking, but a diagnosis of liver cancer led to a life-saving liver transplant for the iconic star in 1995.
Cidre says the bourbon will likely be available in stores in September or October, after the lengthy process required to get it in fans' hands.
"The Glazer company is a family company, and they've been terrific with us," she says. "They just presented this deal, and then they told us how it works, because we don't know how you distribute alcohol. It is a very, very complicated thing. Once everything is ready, you still have to get government approval. Then once you get government approval, you have to make, I don't know, 50,000 bottles or 50,000 cases, and make deals with whoever buys the stuff. Buy a bottle when it comes out, and let me know if you like it.
"It's going to be a premium bourbon, and I think in the $30 range. I can't wait. The day I walk into a liquor store and I see J.R. Ewing bourbon on the shelves … it's going to be a great day."
Get a lesson on bourbon from John Ross Ewing:
- Arts & Entertainment
- Cynthia Cidre