Solera Aging in Whiskey

Solera Aging in Whiskey

I wonder if we won’t start seeing more solera aged bottlings of whiskey in the future… Dave Pickerell was the first to use the solera aging technique in whiskey production here in the U.S. No one can argue with Hillrock Estate’s success. An incredibly accomplished distiller on a farm in upstate New York that is creating whiskeys from grain to glass using grains that are actually grown on the farm? It’s like a idyllic modern craft whiskey daydream…and it’s winning awards and being bought off liquor store shelves faster than it’s stocked. Now we have Blade and Bow from Diageo. For Blade and Bow bourbon, Diageo has implemented a five barrel solera system at Stitzel-Weller, where the bottom or #5 barrel contains some of the original Bourbon that was...

Orphan Barrel Releases…Craft whiskeys?

Interesting read. Diageo’s “orphan barrel” releases can’t last forever even with the solera method of aging employed in making their Blade and Bow bourbon…wonder who they’ll buy next? The only working distillery they own now is George Dickel in Tennessee… ‘Craft’ Bourbon Is in the Eye of the Distiller “Craft” distilleries have mushroomed in the U.S. to 588 from 51 over the past decade. Feeling the heat from the new competition, global liquor conglomerates are getting in on the act, and not letting definitions get in the way. WWW.WSJ.COM|BY SAABIRA...

Bourbon is Not Scotch…

Bourbon is not Scotch. Silly and obvious, I know, but after reading an article where a man was blasting bourbon distilleries for removing age statements, I feel it must be said. Many bourbon drinkers today are first introduced to brown liquors through scotch. It makes sense. You grow up, you want something a little stronger and little more “top shelf”. Scotch is wonderful stuff, so you try other brown liquors and discover that bourbon is sweeter and bolder in many ways and you want to explore more…but the age statements are lower and it can’t be as good, right? Wrong. Bourbon is not Scotch. Bourbon is aged in brand new, charred oak barrels. (They don’t need to in American white oak, but they tend to be.) I usually use the analogy of...

To “E” Or Not To “E”…

To “E” Or Not To “E”…

The spelling of the word whiskey is somehow an argument… I’ve been asked this question many times, “What is the correct spelling of whiskey?” There is no correct spelling. It is the norm in the United States and Ireland to spell it whiskey. (As an American, I tend to write “whiskey”.) Other countries (Scotland, Canada, Japan, etc…) tend to favor (or is it favour?) the whisky spelling. Makers Mark, Old Forester, and George Dickel (all American whiskeys) spell their brands without the “e”. Maybe by the time we all get around to accepting the metric system, we can all finally accept one spelling for our favorite brown liquor:) There are no hard and fast rules and it is NOT the law to spell it one way or another....

Larceny is the new Old Fitzgerald?

The Larceny brand of bourbon by Heaven Hill is a nod to the legend of John Fitzgerald… Max Shapiro’s daughter, Kate Shapiro Latts, is the business savvy designer of the marketing behind Larceny. Who doesn’t love a good story? (Not to mention a great label) During the Civil War, the Internal Revenue Act of 1862 authorized the Federal government to impose a temporary excise tax on distilled spirits. This act was intended “to provide Internal Revenue to support the Government and to pay Interest on the Public Debt.” The act created the positions of storekeeper and gaugers. Storekeepers oversaw the administrative operations, including records and tax filings. They oversaw physical operations and controlled access to the grains, still,...