Pangolin publishing, producers of the ‘Swiss Toni’s Sexy Drinking Guides for Men’ series has bowed to online pressure and cancelled the launch of the TV character’s latest whisky book.
But the Guides’ use of testosterone-fuelled descriptors has increasingly come under fire. In recent years critics have called them ‘inappropriate’, ‘prehistoric’ and ‘really quite crap’.
‘Ten years ago, I used to grit my teeth when he described drinking a prestige blend as “like making love to a beautiful woman”,’ said whisky educator Joanie Walker. ‘But I honestly think that if I read one more time about how he likes “wrapping his lips around a silky 21-year-old” I will go to his car showroom and stick his guide so far up his arse he’ll be reading it through his mouth.’
Swiss Toni’s publishers have always insisted that his comments were ‘ironic rather than offensive’. But following the recent fallout over ‘crude’, ‘sexist’ and ‘vulgar’ comments in Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible they have accepted that the public mood has changed.
Whisky producers and retailers alike rushed to distance themselves from the Sexy Whisky Guide, joining together to issue an industry-wide statement. ‘Obviously we deplore the objectification and casual sexism in Swiss Toni’s work and always have done,’ they said. ‘We just kept quiet about it before.
‘But now it’s out in the open and we’ve seen which way the wind is blowing, we’re right behind this brave calling out of an industry dinosaur. Go ladies! [Can we say that or is that sexist, too]?’
Talking to Fake Booze from the set of the latest Fast Show series, Swiss Toni said, ‘You know, being chased by an angry mob on social media is a lot like making love to a beautiful woman.
‘It’s unexpected, there are lots of ups and downs, and at the end of it you’re completely fucked.’