A friend sent me a text yesterday letting me know that he had put Barney to sleep. We were sharing a house about 15 years ago when my friend brought the dog home. He had gone off to meet with a woman in a shopping center parking lot to look at him and determine whether this was the dog for him. It took one look and an opening of the car door and Barney was off to a new life.
He was a great dog and as far as we could tell a Basset/Beagle mix. He had the head, and at times (when he was younger) the energy, of a Beagle, but the shortish legs and body of a Basset. In those early days we drank scotch with Barney, hung out with Barney, played video games with Barney. He was pretty content just watching it all. Even when I brought home my own dog, an eight week old puppy, Barney just took it in stride. The thing was all over him like a tornado and Barney just took it with patience, never once snapping and the little terror. I seem to remember her climbing on top of Barney in an attempt to establish dominance; all 3 lbs of her. I think she thought she won, but I’m not sure that Barney cared.
In honor of Barney’s passing I chose to make a Highlander cocktail last night. It’s a combination of scotch, Benedictine and Angostura bitters and was the perfect drink with which to remember a really terrific dog.
2 oz Johnnie Walker Red
1/4 to 1/2 oz Benedictine
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Stir with cracked ice and strain into cocktail glass. Garnish with lemon twist.
(a Paul Harrington original and from Cocktail: The Drinks Bible for the 21st Century)
Depending on how much Benedictine you use, the smokiness of the scotch comes through at varying levels. I’ll go between the 1/4 and 1/2 depending on how much smoke I’d like to come through. Since we drank scotch neat with Barney, I went with the 1/4 oz pour last night.
So long Barn. You will be missed.