Host of Bourbon Turntable on YouTube and whiskey writer on the Bourbon Fellowship blog.
Golden Beaver Distillery, Dry Fly Distilling, Del Bach, Dear Hammer Distillery, and Spirits of French Lick are five craft distilleries producing quality, innovative spirits. Golden Beaver is using rice to make rice whiskey and secondary grains in their bourbon, Dry Fly is using triticale as a secondary grain in their bar, Del Bach is using mesquite smoked malt in their American single malt products, Dear Hammer is using Mash Bill Selections and fermentation techniques for American single malt production, and Spirits of French Lick is using heirloom grains and unique barrel finishes for whiskey. Transcript: "So the question is what craft distilleries are producing quality innovative spirits? I'll give you a list of five. First, Golden Beaver Distillery in Chico, California. Chris Koenig is the owner distiller there, and he's using rice to make rice whiskey, and using rice as a secondary grain in his bourbon. In Tacoma, Washington, Dry Fly Distilling, Don Poffenroth is the owner distiller there. He's using triticale as a secondary grain in his bourbons and making a triticale whiskey. A triticale is a hybrid of rye and wheat. Whiskey Del Boc in Tucson, Arizona is using mesquite smoked malt in their American single malt products. It's like peat, but a whole lot better. Deerhammer Distillery in Colorado, Winnie Eckstein is the owner distiller there. He is just innovative all the way around in his mash bill selections, in his fermentation techniques, and he's one of the foremost leaders in the country in American single malt production. Last, but certainly not least, is Alan Bishop at Spirits of French Lick. Alan is one of the leaders in the country on apple brandy production, both in terms of the quality of what he makes and the different ways in which he makes it and finishes it. He uses heirloom grains in some of his whiskeys, and he uses very prudent and unique barrel finishes in a lot of his whiskeys as well. So, there's a list of five for you. Hope that helps."
Taste whiskey with a group of friends, share the experience, be adventurous, and learn something new. Transcript: "What are some tips for tasting and appreciating whiskey? Well, the first thing I would say about tasting and appreciating whiskey is drink with a small group of friends. Share tasting notes together, share the whiskey together, share the experience together. You will learn something every time you do this. Some of your friends are going to pick up on nuances and flavor profiles in a whiskey that you might have missed. But guess what? You're going to be able to tell them things that they might have missed too. It's a really good time. Secondly, be adventurous. You may have your favorites, you may have your daily drinkers, but be willing to branch out. There is a wide spectrum in the spirits world. Don't miss out on something that it has to offer to you."
Peanuts, pecans, dried fruits, charcuterie boards and a ribeye steak are all great food pairings for whiskey. Transcript: "How can whiskey be paired with food and what are some recommended pairings? Well some foods just go well with whiskey period. While some foods will bring out different flavors in the whiskey that you're drinking. One thing that is often paired with whiskey is nuts. You don't have to get real fancy, peanuts or pecans work just fine. If you have something that maybe like a toffee coated peanut or peanut brittle or there are praline pecans that you can buy at Costco, they're absolutely fantastic with whiskey. Fruits are another thing that pair well with whiskey. Dried fruit is especially good, especially if you're in a group tasting setting. So dried cherries, dried cranberries work really well. Don't overthink it, just get a charcuterie board and a few bottles of your favorite whiskey and start trying different things. You'll have a lot of fun with this. And finally, it's tough to beat just a good medium rare rib eye steak in your favorite glass of whiskey."
My favorite non-bourbon spirits include rye, American single malt, absinthe, French brandies (like Armagnac and Cognac), and American brandy. Transcript: "What are some of your favorite non-bourbon spirits? Well, I'll start with the easy one and that's rye. Some people say they don't like rye but they like bourbon, and that doesn't really make a lot of sense to me. Maybe you've been biased against rye because somebody's told you how spicy it is, but that's not really the case in every situation, so I would challenge you to try rye again, and try to find something that's not sourced. Much of the rye in the United States is sourced from one distillery, so if you keep trying that rye over and over again, then you're not going to like it. So try something different, something that you know what distillery it came from. Another one is American single malt. Now, that's going to be similar to scotch, and some people say, oh, I don't like scotch, I don't like peat. Well, you're in luck. American single malt largely is not peated. There is some that is. There's some that is treated in other ways, but American single malt is one of the fastest growing areas in American spirits. If you want to get a little bit more esoteric, you can go to absinthe, which there's a lot you can learn about absinthe. It's a lot of fun to drink. French brandies like Armagnac, Cognac, those are really good as well, and American brandies such as apple brandy, don't miss out there. So those are just a few of my favorite non-bourbon spirits."
I'm Kevin Rose and I'm a certified Bourbon Steward and writer. I have a blog called Bourbon Fellowship, where I write about whiskey reviews, tasting notes, distilleries, and the relationships formed through being a bourbon enthusiast. I also co-host a show called Bourbon Turntable, where we talk to distillers about whiskey and music that inspires them, as well as having musicians on to talk about their favorite whiskey and music. Transcript: "Hi there, my name is Kevin Rose. I'm a certified bourbon steward, but I'm also a writer. I have a blog called Bourbon Fellowship where I'll write not just about bottle reviews and tasting notes, but I'll also try to dig into a little bit more of the details behind the distillery and the distiller that made that whiskey. I also write a lot about the relationship side of being a bourbon enthusiast and the friendships that you gain through that. I also co-host a show called Bourbon Turntable. On that show we blend the love of music with the love of whiskey. You can find that on YouTube or your favorite podcast platform. On that show we'll talk with distillers about not just the whiskey they make, but the music they love and the music that may inspire them. We also have musicians on from time to time to talk about the whiskeys that they like as well as their own music. So I hope you'll tune in and check us out. Bye."