I love my Southern Charm like I love my bourbon: a hearty serving at least once a week and cosigned by Craig Conover. Neat, of course. After last week’s roller-(d)rama at the rink, the sixth episode of the season had the cast sipping, JD quipping, and Craig dipping…his head in shame after claiming to run his friend’s whiskey brand. Oops! It wasn’t a purposeful lie, but rather wishful thinking, right?
Speaking of someone who definitely knows the difference between the two, Thomas Ravenel approaches Shepard “Shep” Rose about including Kathryn Dennis in the group’s outings. Despite putting his foot in his mouth a few times in the last week, Shep tries to do the right thing. But more on that in a bit–we begin as we always do, rising and shining in the Holy City.
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Craig and Naomie are in the process of moving into her house in Mount Pleasant. By all accounts, the home is just one giant closet. Under the guise of needing help picking out a watch, Craig brings a jewelry box to Naomie in bed. As she peruses his man jewels, she’s shocked to find his beautiful promise ring. Tears form in her eyes as she gushes over the gift. If there’s one thing you need to know about Hashtag New Craig it’s that he’s into monogamy. If you want two fun facts, #NewCraig fancies himself a romcom kind of beau and is fluent in baby talk. A third #NC gem? He’s about to become head of the JD’s new bourbon division. It’s safe to say that Hashtag New Craig is crushing life.
Cameran Eubanks is questioning her latest partnerShep. The duo has their first listing, and when she arrives at the house, she calls Shep to find out his whereabouts. Shep is fixing breakfast (at 1 PM…solid!) after some post roller skating-partying on his birthday the previous night. Cameran had hoped that a dry skating party (yeah, right!) would make for a not hungover Shep for their meeting. Shep arrives bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, and he tells Cameran that he doesn’t believe Kathryn was actually invited to his birthday celebration. While he doesn’t want to get in the middle of things, he questions Cameran about her phone call with Kathryn. Cameran claims to be too busy, but it’s clear she doesn’t like seeing her friend disappointed in her. While I don’t think that Cameran owes Kathryn anything, she could have handled it better. Shep just wants everyone to get along. He believes it’s much easier to say yes instead of no…in fact there are probably hundreds of ladies on the peninsula who can attest to the persuasiveness of that pep talk!
Realizing that she may be reaching out to the wrong folks, Kathryn calls up Elizabeth. She’s been icing out her daughter’s godmother, and she’s embarrassed (or so she says) by her display at the Aiken polo match. Kathryn blames her decision to distance herself from Elizabeth on the sole fact that JD is Thomas’ best friend. Elizabeth agrees to meet with her so the pair can catch up and Kathryn can make amends. Across town, Shep and Cameran are meeting with the homeowner and touring the gorgeous new listing. Cameran tries to educate Shep on the historical selling points of the house, and she gets peeved when he tries to undermine her pricing recommendation…and rightfully so! He’s supposed to be shadowing her…not overshadowing!
Landon Clements has realized that her dad isn’t going to loosen the purse strings, and she believes his directive to find one thing and focus on it was the kick in the pants she needed. She calls her father to inform him that she’s heading to New York City to pitch her online magazine to a friend of a friend who is an Internet entrepreneur. Her adorable dad jokes that this trip shouldn’t be misconstrued as an excuse to buy new clothes. Also focusing on bringing in the Benjamins, Craig is giving JD an update on the hotel renovations. Much like with the legal profession, Craig is a bit bored with the hospitality industry, and he’d prefer to focus on the bourbon side of the business. JD tasks him with inviting guests to upcoming tasting to provide feedback. Danni will be at the top of the list given her fifteen years experience in alcohol sales. Craig is hoping Danni will be able to provide knowledge and insight into their new endeavor. He tells JD he wants their bourbon to be the one non-bourbon drinkers adore and bourbon connoisseurs respect. JD reminds him it isn’t “their” bourbon.
Kathryn arrives at JD and Elizabeth’s house and the two dive headfirst into what happened with their friendship. Elizabeth is hurt to have been shut out of her goddaughter’s life, and Kathryn takes responsibility for the rift. Elizabeth begins to cry, wondering if she did anything wrong. She made a promise to Kathryn and Kensie, and she intends to keep it regardless of Kathryn’s relationship status with T-Rav. An equally teary Kathryn apologizes for the freeze out and promises to make an effort to do better. Meanwhile, apparently still in real estate mode, Shep stops by T-Rav’s new house for a tour. Thomas admits that he’s been extremely busy working on his home,
quitting the show, awaiting his second child, and trying to placate a furious and screaming Kathryn when she’s being excluded from the group. He explains to Shep that each time Kathryn gets angry or upset, it causes potential harm to his unborn son. He is counting on Shep to play the peacemaker, and Shep is up to the task.
In New York, Landon meets with an industry executive to share her ideas for an online magazine for the international man of leisure. She delves into an in depth presentation complete with winter polo matches and coffee table books. The exec encourages her to dial it back a bit. He just wants her pitch in a few succinct sentences. Hell, just a few sentences. He informs her that her plan is too broad, and thus readily available on countless sites across the interwebs. However, he believes she can find a niche and encourages her to make a prototype of the site she envisions. Landon realizes how difficult it is to sound confident about creating something she has no experience at doing.
At Shem Creek Bar and Grill, Cameran is meeting Whitney Sudler-Smith and Shep for bloodies and beer. Shep informs his pals that Craig is worried the crew is going to skip out on the bourbon tasting. Hashtag New Craig loves whiskey more than the law. Oh wait, that’s just regular old Craig. Shep shares that he’d like to plan a mountain weekend for his friends at his parents’ mountain house in Linville, North Carolina. Just stop! Linville is one of my favorite places, having spent many summers and ski seasons there (at the Sugar Mountain lodge, not the slopes) thanks to an ex-boyfriend I dated a few years longer than I should have. As Cameran and Whitney stare blankly, Shep ticks off the countless activities the group can do. There’s hiking in Linville Gorge. The mile high bridge at Grandfather Mountain. Lunch at the Grist Mill! Don’t forget shopping for every random item under the sun at the Pineola Inn. Okay, so I added the last three, but so worth it if you’re ever up that way. Whitney and Cameran are skeptical…hiking and a four hour drive? What does the guest list look like for this Oregon Trail nightmare? The two are on board(ish) until Shep mentions Kathryn. While they appreciate his big heart and desire to spare feelings, hasn’t he attended the same events she has?
That evening, JD, his father, and Craig convene on JD’s Gentry bourbon warehouse for the tasting. Craig is mesmerized by every aspect of the bourbon side of JD’s company. Craig seems a bit too comfortable referring to the inventory, warehouse, and branding as “ours” instead of JD’s, even going as far as telling Shep he’s being prepped to run the division. When Craig comments to JD that there is a lot about the bourbon side of operations that Craig was unaware of, JD makes sure to remind Craig who is the boss. He doesn’t have to fill in Craig on what he’s doing. That’s Craig’s responsibility to JD. To further prove his point, JD appoints Danni assist with the tasting. Craig feels deflated, but Danni is relieved to move away from Craig who is whispering over the presenter. The group takes notes on the different variations they’re tasting, while the well-mannered Whitney pretends to vomit with each sip. He attempts to embarrass Craig, asking the components of bourbon, “It’s rye, and what else?” Like a deer in headlights, Craig turns to Danni. This is what he wants to learn! He’d be such an integral part of this division if he was educated in the difference between a bourbon and a whiskey.
Oh Craig. A simple Google search could have saved you the humiliation. Bourbon is type of whiskey differentiated from scotch varietals based on geography and the use of corn instead of rye (which is common in scotch). So Whitney was wrong with his catty comment, too. Thank you, Internet. As Craig imparts to Danni that he could be an amazing asset to this business because of his huge circle of friends, Danni is quick to remind him that this is multi-billion dollar industry, and it’s not the same as knowing a bunch of bartenders. Shep can see that Craig has exaggerated his role in his mind, and he’s fighting back every instinct to dog on his friend. Instead, Shep tells an admittedly embarrassed Craig that he needs to find a way to add value to the division, and he has the utmost faith that Craig can do it. Could this be Hashtag New Shep? JD approaches Danni about serving as vice-president of the bourbon division, and she encourages JD to have a conversation with Craig. JD kindly reminds Craig that his job is to make JD’a life easier…not run JD’s empire. Semantics, right? Talk about an awkward conversation with Naomie who was led to believe she was dating the next Jim Beam!
TELL US – WHAT DID YOU THINK OF LAST NIGHT’S EPISODE? SHOULD CRAIG HAVE DIALED IT BACK A NOTCH (OR TWELVE)?
[Photo Credit: Bravo]