The Juicy BitsThe Juicy Bits

2022 was a big year for booze. After playing second fiddle to suds for decades, spirits have now outsold beer for the first time with 42.1% of the alcohol market share. Premium tequila and American whiskey are the top sellers. One of those whiskeys, Proof And Wood's The Representative, just won "World's Best Bourbon" in the 2023 World Whiskies Awards. After reading that news, I immediately ordered a bottle: only $56.99! In other beverage news, the US Food and Drug Administration has decided that soy milk can legally be called "milk," despite complaints from the dairy industry. Elsewhere in government oversight, the US Labor Department has fined a meatpacking sanitation company $1.5 million for hiring children as young as age 13 to clean meat saws, among other hazardous jobs. And the State Department has renewed its Diplomatic Culinary Partnership with the James Beard Foundation. The two organizations hand-picked an American Culinary Corps of more than 80 top chefs to act as cultural ambassadors during diplomatic programs both at home and abroad. Let's hope they serve the World's Best Bourbon at their next event! —Dave Joachim



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