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By No Idea
#558907
Your wife made a nice call on the Booker's. He was a hoot of a man to meet. Never met a stranger. He'd offer you lunch and invite you into his kitchen and fix you a country ham snadwhich, call for his wife to bring a bottle over. He'd uncork the bottle and throw the cork away. Booker Noe, his cousin Parker Beam, Jimmy Russel, Elmer Lee, Jim Rutledge. Some real characters. With only Jimmy and Jim still working the dinosaurs are indeed passing, rip Booker and Elmer. Parker has ALS. If you ever see a Parker Beam Heritage bottle, buy it.

Booker would take his son Freddy on bar tours to promote the Beam small batch collection, btw if you like rye and haven't tried Basil Haydn bourbon do yourself a favor and pick one up. Anyway Booker would tell the story about being in Alaska on a promoting junket. They'd always get a couple different bottles open to get the selling going and Freddy always picked Knob Creek, Booker picked Booker's. Booker asked him his son about always picking KC and Freddy said he just liked it, so Booker dubbed it Freddy's bourbon. Never could get Fred (as he prefers since his Dad died) to admit he somehow out marketed his Dad's Booker's expression, but hey Knob creek is everywhere for the last decade. At a dinner one evening somebody asked Booker what he thought about a person mixing coke with Bookers. He replied, "Well, son, if a person wants the best bourbon and coke they can get it's logical they'd mix it with Booker's."

Jimmy Russel is the real deal too. I saw him last week in town and had him sign a bottle. I wonder how many more chances I will get to do that. Hopefully many more. He doesn't know me but always knows I'm the kid he chided when I questioned him about taking 8 yr old barrels and holding em back two more years to create Russel's Reserve. That was 14 years ago when I was in my late 20's. He claimed I was too young to recall the 8 yr Wild Turkey. I described in detail the label change, and said the bird on the bottle used to be a jake and the whiskey was 8 years old, now the bird is a gobbler and the whiskey inside aint no 8 yrs old. Fred Noe took great delight when I shared this with him some years later, the bird got older and the whiskey younger. He told me he gave Jimmy a hard time about it the next time I saw him but Jimmy was ready this time and retorted to Fred, "just how small batch is your Knob Creek since it's everywhere?"

Jim Rutledge of Four Roses is another good man and makes a fine bourbon. I really like his single barrel.

Somebody asked about the PVW and whether it's worth it. I hashed that out here about a year ago. It's really not, imo. If you found yourself lucky enough to see all the expressions in a retail store, get the Lot B 12 or the 15. YMMV. Sadly, I was in NOLA last week, walked into a Rouses and bought Weller 12 right off the shelf. I can not recall the last time I did that here at home, in KY. I'm to the point of quitting BT products altogether out of principle. But then I think about it, they're just trying to make a buck.
By No Idea
#558977
Thanks for that link BM. I hadn't ever heard it. Fred is a funny sumbitch. He left out what Booker would announce when introducing Fred. He'd say, "This is my son Freddy." He'd tell the exact story Fred tells in your link about WKU. then add. "He did finish college though. Most people that go to college for 8 years come out as a doctor, or lawyer, or an accountant, but not Freddy." Bookers annual bbq was always quite the event. He'd stand over the grill with pork all over it and douse it with Booker's and say "Pork and Beam!".
By No Idea
#558988
I don't believe I know Robey, maybe I met him but can't recall. I met most of the bourbon distillers through my college years when I tended bar. When a watering hole in a town the size of BG offers higher end products the liquor reps always want their wares displayed and would bring in the distillers. Anyone in college should try to serve or bartend at the highest end place they can, amazing how it helps when you're in a tight spot and the affluent/influential folks lend a hand. In the many years since then I run into folks like Fred or Jim at bourbon dinners mostly. In a pinch I've had to do a few speaking engagements as well and always speak highly of the men in the bourbon industry that I like. I'm in a quandary about the upcoming PVW dinner. They aren't interested in sending anyone to speak. So the restaurateur is asking me to do it. I got in touch with the liquor rep about PVW sending me a cheat sheet. They sent some abc stuff off their web page that anyone can read. A far cry from last weeks dinner when Jimmy Russell drove down with his wife and spoke. Jimmy cares and does a good job entertaining and educating. I don't know if I will be so warm in my regards about PVW and may in fact highlight some discrepancies and breaks in the time line since they sold their distillery in 1972.
Maybe you should come to a bourbon dinner over this way some time. PVW is sold out for the March dinner. There will be another dinner come November, and more next JAn or FEB. Bring a big stick for muskie if you do. Or a boom stick in JAn for a float trip if all the still water is locked up.
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By fallen513
#559981
It took me .7 seconds to determine I wanted the Michter's...chased with Four Roses single barrel.
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By Grizz
#560296
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Found Blanton's a couple summers back and try to keep a bottle hangin' round as often as possible. That is difficult due to my taste for it outstrips my ability to afford it regularly. Blanton's taste on a Beam budget... for shame.
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By T.J. Brayshaw
#560298
I'm either poorer or stingier than the average whiskey drinker because I don't consider $30 to be the cut-off for what makes a whiskey cheap.

My "everyday" is Evan Williams, which at about $12 for 750ml seems just about right. For me, Buffalo Trace is for when I've miraculously got more money in the wallet than I thought, and the bottles pushing $30 are for when I am depressed that I don't.
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By fallen513
#560337
suits the padron nicely
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I miss the salt, more so now eh... :cool

Thumbing Through Some SBSs

Ivemyer’s Hot-Spot Emerger (variation) […]

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