kentucky bourbon whiskey


This week’s image isn’t a still, but a video showing whiskey barrels being charred at the Brown-Forman Cooperage in Louisville, Kentucky. Until Brown-Forman opened a second cooperage in Alabama last year, this cooperage made all of the barrels used for Jack Daniel’s, Woodford Reserve, Old Forester, and Brown-Forman’s other whiskies. This video was shot in November, 2011 - so why post it now? Well, I spotted some whiskey barrel planters at a local hardware store this week, and it turns out they were from the Brown-Forman Cooperage. Who knows, this video is old enough that those barrels might just be the ones shown here. Not likely, but one never knows…

Let There Be Cowgirls

Let There Be Cowgirls(½): A Captain America Fanfiction

RelationshipSteve x Reader, Bucky x Reader

Summary: Bucky has been cleared to start going out on social gatherings and Steve has been cleared to start forming intimate relationships. So what happens when they go to a bar and meet you?

Warnings: Drinking, mention of threesome, mention of military service.

Word Count: 3,840

Author’s Note: I’ve never in my life tried to write this perspective before. I typically stick to third person omniscient, sorry if this sucks. This is the first part of a two-shot  Reader x Steve, Reader x Bucky threesome. The second will most likely be gratuitous smut. Also, this happens in a post Civil War perfect land where nobody is in jail and everyone is mostly happy.

Bucky was not sure how he ended up here. He was only cleared to go out earlier that day, upon hearing the news Clint and Sam had immediately insisted on taking him out. Steve had of course followed and for good measure, Natasha had come too, just to keep an eye on her boys.

It had been a rough few months of therapy, all of the Avengers were in therapy, but Bucky had it the most frequently. His therapist had suggested a few weeks ago that he start pushing out of his comfort zone, first suggesting that he simply head a few floors down and grab a coffee from the Starbucks in the tower.

Next suggesting he try something other than plain black coffee, which had opened him up to a world of sweets he had never known before. In his time, sweets were rationed and everything was bland. Now he could get anything and everything he wanted, in fact, he had one time. He had asked the barista for one pump of everything, it hadn’t been good, but he had simply been excited by the thought.

A few weeks later, she had told him how proud of him she was and cleared him to leave the tower. Which usually meant Sam and Steve dragged him to some nearby food cart or nearby eatery. It was fine like that, it kept his human interaction minimal while also allowing him to slowly get used to the idea of being seen.

That had initially been his biggest issue; he had lived in the shadows for so long he hadn’t known how to stop. Going outside in broad daylight, even just to head to the deli on the corner was a huge step for him. It had terrified him at first, but Sam and Steve had been his rocks.

The two men had never faltered, and though his relationship with Sam appeared to be rocky, it was incredibly beneficial to him. The teasing and refusal to tiptoe around him had helped immensely; Sam treated him as if he was human. Whereas Steve still edged around him, afraid of upsetting him or setting him off.

Steve’s same therapist had given him the go-ahead weeks ago to start working on forming intimate relationships. Which had led to Clint and Sam attempting to take him to a strip club, as if that’s where relationships were formed.

Earlier that day Bucky’s therapist had proudly declared that she thought he was fit enough to go out socially. Which was how Sam concluded that Bucky and Steve needed to go to a bar. Clint had immediately jumped on board, excitedly planning the night out with his fellow bird. Steve had been apprehensive, partially because he himself was still iffy about going out.

According to Sam and Clint, they had chosen this bar, a country themed bar, because it was simple. The people there were mostly polite and while the music wasn’t what the boys had been used to, it was much better than that weird beeping shit. Most of the bar was retired military and traveling people who were in the rodeo or something related.

The former assassin was hunched over in the corner of the bar eyeing the drink in front of him with contempt. Clint had hurriedly ordered it for him before ditching the group to head after some girl in daisy dukes. Steve sat beside him, blinking at the odd drink in front of him. Neither man cared for the taste; however, they suspected it might be some type of beer.

They noticed the bartender slide over to their side of the bar, you eyed them curiously as you set a drink down in front of a man a few stools away. Bucky instinctively tensed and Steve immediately sat up straighter as you walked over to them.

“Evenin’ fellas. Your drinks okay?” You asked, your voice sounding like honey. The southern lilt in it was thick as you kept your voice low.

Both men shuddered; they could practically feel your words on their skin. Your accent seemed to caress them, the gentle inflection in your tone making them feel like you actually might care about their orders. You were definitely good at your job.

“Uh, what is it that we’re drinking?” Steve asked, his face wrinkling as he forced himself to take another sip.

You cocked her head and smiled softly. Your black, silver studded cowboy hat tilting forward and nearly falling in your face. “You’re with the blonde guy right? With the arms?” You murmured jerking your chin towards where Clint was dancing with some blonde-haired woman.

“Yeah.” Steve answered, though he was a little confused about the arms part. Didn’t everyone have arms? Well… maybe not everyone.

“It’s an IPA. Beer, but in my opinion, not good beer.” You chuckled softly before pulling their drinks away from them. “They’ve only picked up traction within the last few years; mostly hipsters drink ‘em.”

Hipsters was not a term that Bucky recognized, however, it made a small amount of sense to him. He could use context clues to guess the meaning, though he was off by about a mile. If the beer had only become popular within the last few years, then that explained a lot.

Steve, however, recognized the term immediately. Natasha had jokingly called him one when they donned disguises and ran from Hydra several years ago. She had spent the next ten minutes trying to explain to him what a hipster was.

“You fellas like whiskey?” You asked casually, turning back to the shelf behind you to catalogue the bottles. Bucky took note of how your long hair swished just above your jean-clad ass. He was sure every part of you was carefully crafted so you could get the best tips; your movements were friendly, but deliberate. You were clearly a woman who had perfected her art.

Steve raised an eyebrow at Bucky, silently asking him if he liked whiskey. Back in the day, they had, but they weren’t sure if they liked any new brands. Steve knew he liked what Tony drank, but he had a feeling that it was excessively expensive and that a place like this most likely wouldn’t carry it.

“Yeah.” Bucky answered gruffly, much to Steve’s surprise.

Steve shot him an odd look that was only met with a shrug. His therapist had told him to interact with people more, so he was doing as he had been told. Plus, you were a bartender, which meant you were kind of like the Baristas he had befriended.  

Both men summerized that you were cute; with your grey and red flannel tied up into a crop top with low-rise black jeans. If the sound of your footsteps was any indication, you were most likely wearing cowboy boots much like everyone else in the bar.

“Alright, well let’s see what we’ve got, yeah?” You shot them a cheeky smile over your shoulder as you pulled down five different bottles of whiskey.

“By the way,” You started as you set the bottles down in front of them, quickly finishing by introducing yourself.

“Steve.” The blonde man replied, giving you a hesitant smile.

The sincerity in his eyes made you melt. You weren’t technically supposed to take customers home, but boy did you want to share a handsy cab ride with this one. It wasn’t the bars rule, it was your own personal rule.

Bird Dog Blackberry, Bird Dog Peach, Cutty Sark, Wild Turkey, Old Grand-dad. Bucky mentally catalogued. Cutty Sark and Old Grand-dad seemed familiar, he liked familiar. However, he was supposed to try new things.

“Bucky.” The dark haired one mumbled.

“Alright, let’s start with Old Grand-Dad. It’s a classic. It’s been around since the 1840s, it’s a Kentucky bourbon. It’s got classic whiskey notes and this sucker is 100 proof. It’s got a sweet, but savory taste going on. I give it to all the whiskey snobs who tell me to surprise them.”  You poured them each a small amount in disposable cups. Both men tried it, both pleasantly surprised by the familiar taste of it.

“Next, Wild Turkey. My least favorite whiskey, ever. But, some people swear by it.” You wrinkled your nose as you took back their cups and poured a small amount in. “It’s been around since the 1940s, it’s also a Kentucky bourbon. Now this one is 101 and proof. It’s got a smokier and grittier flavor that sticks around in the back of your throat.  Most people prefer it with a bit of water. But it’s best in mixed drinks.”

Both men drank their cups, this time pulling slight faces. Maybe in the past they would have liked it, but both men had become spoiled by modern day sweets. The gritty flavor of this one just was not cutting it for them.

“Now, Cutty Sark. It’s a Scottish whisky from the 1920s. It’s also 100 proof. This one is soft, has less of a charred taste and is medium bodied so it doesn’t linger. It’s a good basic whisky.” You shrugged as you slid the drinks over to them. They enjoyed this one more, it was softer. Neither man really liked the lingering taste that the previous one had left.

“Don’t you have other customers?” Steve asked apprehensively, there were quite a few other people in the bar.

You shook your head, “They can get their drinks from Cash.” You waved your hand dismissively before shooting them a devilish look. “Besides, I like pleasing my customers.” You finished off with a wink in Bucky’s direction.

Cash was your fellow bartender, who because he lacked the proper assets -ahem, boobs- did not make as much in tips as you. However, he was a kickass bartender and the regulars loved him. 

“Alright, Bird Dog is a newer whiskey. It’s also a Kentucky Bourbon, but it’s only 86 proof. Bird Dog is known for its flavored whiskeys. If you have a sweet tooth this is the whiskey for you. Personally, the blackberry one is my favorite. Now, this isn’t like those fruity pink colored cocktails, this may be sweet, but it’s still whiskey.” You decided to pour them the peach one first.

Steve’s eyes widened as he drank it, while Bucky simply stared at it suspiciously after finishing his. It was delicious, yet both men felt slightly betrayed that they preferred this new age sweet whiskey to their familiar Old Grand-Dad.

Bucky was sure he’d found love when he tried the blackberry one, while Steve preferred the peach. Something about the sweetness of it mixing with the woody flavor of the bourbon made his taste buds sing.

You grinned as they grudgingly admitted their approval of the drinks. “Neat or on the rocks?” Both men chose neat, which lead to their plastic cups being disposed of and replaced with glass tumblers.

“I’ll be back to check on y’all in a bit.” You said before sashaying away from them and walking over to a group of undeniably drunk men at the other end of the bar.

“She was nice.” Steve mused quietly.

Bucky grunted in reply. You had been very nice to be so patient with them; of course, your motives were most likely tip related. It still made him feel warm inside, or maybe that was just the sweet whiskey he was sipping.

“She’s cute.” Natasha said casually, admiring her nails.

Steve and Bucky both jumped a little, neither had noticed Natasha show up.

“Where did you come from?” Steve asked, stuttering slightly. Natasha was one of the few people who could sneak up on him, and it hadn’t helped that maybe he had been a bit distracted by the cute bartender.

“Since Wild Turkey.” She snarked, spinning her seat to lean her back against the bar so she could analyze the crowd. Steve’s cheeks reddened and Bucky’s eyes narrowed at her revelation. “I think she likes you.” She didn’t bother specifying which of them.

The dark haired man immediately wanted to change the subject and clearly, Natasha was talking about Steve. Which, maybe, disappointed him. “What’re you drinking?” Bucky questioned, pointing to her mason jar.

Natasha eyed it curiously as if she was seeing it for the first time. “A Cowboy Killer.” She sent a smirk in the soldier’s direction.

The blond super soldier squinted at Natasha’s head. “Where did that hat come from?” She hadn’t shown up in a cowboy hat, but now she was wearing a sleek black one, perched easily on her red curls.

“A cowboy gave it to me.” She stated simply.

“Gave?” Bucky asked, raising a brow and shooting her a lopsided grin.

She looked offended for a minute before standing up and narrowing her eyes. “… Yes.” The redhead walked away, venturing back out into the fray.

“Hey, man? What’s that?” Sam asked, materializing out of seemingly nowhere between the two soldier’s.

Bucky tried to stop himself from making a snarky remark, but was just a little too late. “A drink.” He replied wrinkling his nose at the lanky man.

“It’s called Bird Dog Whiskey.” Steve answered, shooting Bucky a disapproving look. He held his cup out to Sam, offering the other man a sip.

After savoring the taste for a second Sam blinked, confusion taking over his features. “Why does it taste like peaches?”

“It’s peach flavored whiskey.” Bucky snapped, an implied ‘duh’ at the end of his sentence.

Steve sighed, giving up on trying mediating. He wasn’t entirely sure how the two’s relationship worked. They seemed to antagonize each other to no end, sometimes he feared they would start throwing punches. But, oddly enough, it seemed to work for them. Bucky seemed genuinely at ease around Sam, which filled Steve with a great sense of relief.

There was a few minutes of bickering before You approached them again right as the song changed. The new song singing something about God making cowgirls.

“Hey, soldier’s. Y’all still doing okay?” You leaned against the counter, maybe, just maybe, slightly showing off your exposed cleavage. It came with the job, but you also just kind wanted them to check the girls out.

Steve looked at you incredulously, “How’d you know?” After noticing how you were leaning against the bar his cheeks flushed and he began staring at the wall directly behind you.

Bucky risked a glance at your chest before swallowing thickly and averting his eyes the wall beside him. 

Mission accomplished. You thought smugly.

“Most of my family is military. I recognize it in your eyes.” You shot a slightly sad look at Steve and Bucky, causing both men to shudder. For a second you placed your hand on Steve’s, before straightening up again behind the bar. 

You would have done the same thing to Bucky, but you were getting the feeling that he wasn’t a fan of being touched.

You then brought your warm eyes to rest on Sam. “Airman.” You nodded at him.

“Okay, that’s impressive.” Sam said, tipping his beer bottle in your direction. “I’m Sam.” He gave you a charming grin as he settled into the seat Natasha had abandoned beside Steve.

Instead of immediately replying, you refilled the men’s drinks, not even needing to double check that you was pouring the right drinks. You answered with your name, giving him a curt smile.

Your expression brightened as you looked over at Bucky, he was continuously sweeping his too long hair behind his ears. Every few seconds the strands would fall back into his face, causing him to get slightly frustrated. The faint gleam of his metal hand could be seen as it rested on the bar, gently holding his cup. He had spent the last few months carefully practicing with holding breakable things, just to make sure his left arm wasn’t completely destructive.

“Interesting name.” Sam laughed, giving you a flirty look that you didn’t bother acknowledging. You already had your eyes on someone, or someone’s.

You kept your eyes on Bucky. “I have a non-traditional family.”

Suddenly, your hand appeared in front of him holding a black hair tie. “Take it.” You said, giving him a gentle smile.

 Instead of immediately grabbing the hair tie Bucky set his glass down and dropped his arm to his lap, not wanting to scare you. He smiled apprehensively back as he gently plucked the hair tie from your outstretched hand, making sure to use his right hand. He still didn’t pick up his drinks at Starbucks using his left-hand. He was still too worried about its destructive properties to risk touching anyone else with it.

Truthfully, as you watched him put his hair up all you could thing about was threading your fingers through the strands and giving them a good hard yank.

Your eyes darted to a man several stools down from them, sitting with a group of friends, all of them drinking beer. He had a prosthetic hand and leg that went from the thigh down. Immediately your eyes returned to Bucky, giving him a warm look. What you had tried to portray was that this was a safe place, you hoped he understood.

Steve watched this short exchange, his eyes softening as Bucky hesitantly wrapped his metal hand around the glass again. He was already planning on how to invite you to lunch, once he saw something that made his friend happy he tended to leap on it.

Sam had already backed off; clearly noticing the vibes you were putting out were not for him. They seemed to be for Bucky, or maybe Steve? However, he could still ask you questions that he knew Bucky and Steve would never ask. Just as a little help to his friends.

“How old are you?” He asked giving the two a cheeky grin as your back was turned. Both replied with frowns, though Bucky’s looked slightly more murderous than Steve’s.

“Twenty-six. But, my birthday is in a few weeks.” You replied casually as you tidied up behind the bar.

Sam thought it over for a minute, before reaching for his phone and quickly typing a few things into google. “So you’re a Taurus? You know that means you’re really compatible with Cancers and Pisces.”

You turned and raised an eyebrow as you dried a tumbler. “Yeah? You know any?”

“These two.” He replied, cheekily pointing his thumbs at his two companions.

Steve and Bucky had honestly no idea if they were actually what Sam said they were. Wanda sometimes read them their horoscopes, but it was usually in one ear and out the other.

You looked Steve and Bucky over before giving Sam an unimpressed look. “Yeah? What are you? Their wingman?” God, you hoped he was.

Steve and Bucky both snorted, oh if only you knew that’s exactly what Sam was.

“You could say that. So, which one do you think you’re taking home tonight?” That one got him an under the table smack from Steve who was now looking anywhere but at you.

Bucky was staring into his glass, already knowing the answer.

Por que no los dos?” You answered with a wicked grin.

Steve and Sam were rusty at best with their Spanish, but Bucky had been trained in multiple languages and was fluent. His eyes widened comically as he stared at you, his mouth slightly agape.

Women now were so forward, he saw that every time he went anywhere with Steve. Women would throw themselves at the blonde super soldier, which usually left Bucky sitting on the sidelines. He supposed that was how Steve had felt all those years.

“Shit.” Sam said, laughing. “She speaks Spanish. I need to get Nat over here to translate.” The phrase sounded weirdly familiar to him, but he couldn’t place it.

Bucky considered offering up the translation, but he decided to be selfish and keep it to himself. Your words made him feel warm, girls didn’t like him anymore, Steve was the desirable one now. But you had wanted both, which meant Steve and Bucky.

“Did someone call me?” Nat asked, walking back over to the bar. She had been observing from the sidelines while babysitting a drunk Clint. She hadn’t heard anything that was said, due to the drunk man’s babbling, aside from her own name.

“Hey, Nat! I need you to transla-” Sam started only to be cut off by Clint.

“Well, hello, cowgirl.” Clint slurred, sauntering up to the bar. He shot an easy smile towards you. It was clear that he was decently intoxicated; such was to be expected as they had now been at the bar for almost two hours. “Whose bed are your boots gonna be under tonight?”

You wrinkled your nose slightly. “Referencing a Shania Twain song about cheating to hit on me, classy.”

“Classy is all I kno-” Clint started. He was cut off as a burp rose in his throat, which he released, burping loudly near your face.

“Good one, Clint.” Sam groaned, shaking his head disdainfully.

Steve immediately started apologizing for his friend. You were used to it, in fact worse had happened, much worse. You resisted the urge to shudder at the memory of a customer defecating on the bar.

The man felt another burp coming up, only to realize at the last second that this one felt suspiciously like more than a burp. In an instant you were holding a small yellow puke bag in front of him, which Clint graciously accepted.

“Sorry, boys, I think we’ve gotta go.” Natasha said apologetically.

The others reluctantly got up, Steve pulling out his wallet. “How much do we owe you?”  He motioned to Sam, himself, and Bucky. Natasha and Clint had set up a tab as soon as they walked in the door.

“Free for some fellow Bird Dog lovers.” You replied with a wink. “Which means you have to pay, Sam.” Your tone was teasing.

“Damn you, woman.” The former Airman replied, shaking his head.

Steve pulled out three twenties, “Then take these as a tip.” He gave you his signature all-American-boy smile that unbeknownst to him usually caused the panties to drop.

“I’ll see you again soon.” You replied, grinning as you slid the money into your back pocket. You leaned against the counter as you watched the group gently guide their drunk friend out.

You were a little disappointed that they had to leave, but you were confident that they would return.

Steve drove them back, Bucky sitting up front with Sam and Natasha sat in the back on either side of Clint.

“Man, I’m telling you, I was this close to sealing the deal for them.” Sam said, shaking his head ruefully as he glared at Clint.

“I’m so-sorry. I ruined Bucky’s only chance of getting laid- I’m the worst friend.” Clint drunkenly whined. He continued on, babbling nonsense while Natasha simply chuckled and gently patted his arm.

“We’ll just have to go back then.” Natasha said casually.

“By the way, Nat, what does ‘por que no los dos?’ mean?” Sam asked.

“Taco…commercial.” Clint mumbled.

“It means ‘Why not both?’” Both Natasha and Bucky supplied at the same time.

Steve accidentally tapped the brakes too hard, causing them to lurch to a stop at a red light. His cheeks were bright red and he coughed to cover up his embarrassment.

“Shit! From the taco commercial!” Sam exclaimed. “That’s where I know it from!”

Clint let out a loud wail, “I ruined their only chance at a threesome! I’m the worst!”

The car erupted into laughter. Steve continued coughing while Bucky chortled under his breath; Natasha laughed a full belly laugh and Sam simply let out a pained laugh as he shook his head.

“We’ll definitely have to go back then.” Natasha said as the laughter died down. There was mumbled agreement from the others in the car.