By Lori Fredrich Senior Writer & Dining Editor Published May 24, 2018 at 3:30 PM

Milwaukee’s own Central Standard Distillery will make its debut at the Indianapolis 500 this weekend.

Thanks to a fortuitous partnership with AJ Foyt Racing, Belardi Auto Racing and 31-year-old Australian-born driver James Davison, the Central Standard logo will adorn the pole position on the hood of Davison’s #33 car.

A bruised Davison made it into the finals despite a crash last Friday that he called the "biggest of [his] career." 

But after whipping up the 33rd and final spot on Saturday, Davison saw a dramatic increase in speed on Sunday with an average of 226.255 mph, putting him a very solid 19th on the grid.

It's put Davison in the spotlight as one of the favored underdogs of Sunday's race. And, with Milwaukee cheering him on, there's hope he'll make a splash at the finish line.

Although it’s customary for winning drivers to chug a glass of ceremonial milk, Central Standard co-founders Evan Hughes and Pat McQuillan have high hopes that there will also be a celebratory glass of Central Standard Spirits in Davison's hand after the race.

"It’s fine for James to chug the ceremonial milk after he wins," said Hughes."We’re excited that after the cameras have turned off that Davison and his crew will finish any post-victory celebration with a toast using our Central Standard Straight Bourbon."

Of course, Hughes and McQuillan are also inviting Milwaukeeans to celebrate their potential racing victory by hosting a race viewing party at their Walker’s Point tasting room at 613 S. 2nd St. beginning at 11 a.m.

Hughes notes that anyone who makes a purchase Sunday at the tasting room will also take home a free bottle of Central Standard spirits ... if Davison wins.

Lori Fredrich Senior Writer & Dining Editor

Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club. 

When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.