When your in-laws construct a three-chamber kiln in their backyard and build an addition to use as a pottery studio, you will not be able to enjoy your cocktail out of a tumbler. At least that’s what it’s like for the son-in-law of Debbie and Scott Williamson.
The couple does not own any glassware. They drink water, wine and whiskey out of wood-fired clay, either theirs—Butterfly Bend Pottery—or from their collection, which is displayed throughout their sprawling rancher in Lovettsville.
Debbie knows the color of whiskey is important, but for her, what’s on the outside better enhances the experience. “Once you get over not seeing your drink,” says Williamson, you can better concentrate on the feel of the clay, notice the subtle shifts in texture. The drink becomes not just what you swallow but also what’s in your hand.
“It’s like kissing a sailor,” she says, moving her hands over a speckled patch of the mug. “These are like the whiskers.” She feels around for a smooth section. “And these are like the lips.” // Next month Butterfly Bend Pottery is a stop on the Catoctin Holiday Art Tour (Nov. 12-13); otherwise, it’s open by appointment only.