View Full Version : Happy anniversary, Jimmy Russell

09-10-2008, 17:26
My Apologies if this has been covered elsewhere...

Per Lew Bryson's (http://www.lewbryson.com/) Seen Through a Glass (http://lewbryson.blogspot.com/2008/09/happy-anniversary-jimmy-russell.html) beer and whiskey blog:

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Happy anniversary, Jimmy Russell (http://lewbryson.blogspot.com/2008/09/happy-anniversary-jimmy-russell.html)

Today, September 10, marks 54 years that Jimmy Russell started work at the Wild Turkey distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. I talked to Jimmy a couple months ago for the story in the latest issue (due out October 1) of Malt Advocate (http://www.maltadvocate.com/issue.asp), he told me how he started out in Quality Control:

"This is really the only full-time job Iíve ever had," he said. "It wasnít hardly the same as it is now. They called it "Quality Control." Now you do Quality Control and people bring you samples and you sit there and run them. Back then, you went and got your own samples, and then you might be unloading a truck of grain after you run them. Unloading it with a shovel!"Now Jimmy's been there so long, and been the master distiller so long, it's hard for anyone else to remember when Jimmy wasn't making the bourbon. He learned how to do it from a pre-Prohibition master distiller, William Hughes:

It wasnít always "the Russell way." When Jimmy learned distilling, it was "Mister Billís way." Master distiller William "Mister Bill" Hughes was a "seven-day man," as Jimmy put it. "He lived up on top of the hill, and he was here seven days a week. Heíd worked before Prohibition, here at this distillery." Mister Bill took young Jimmy under his wing, and taught him distilling.And we've all benefited. Hats off, and shake hands with one of the finest folks in bourbon -- a business that is chock-full of some truly warm, decent folks -- happy anniversary, Jimmy Russell. Thanks for all the great whiskey.

Cheers to Mr. Russell!

09-10-2008, 22:56
Here's to Jimmy!! :toast:


09-11-2008, 02:09
Here's to Jimmy!! :toast:


I think I'll join you!. :toast:

After long and careful consideration I've decided that if I could have only bourbon for the rest of my life, it would be Wild Turkey Rare Breed.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

09-11-2008, 06:30
54 years and a job well done. Happy Anniversary Jimmy.
Joe :usflag:

09-11-2008, 12:34
54 years on the job, that ain't bad.

I read or heard somewhere that Jimmy Russell has secrets to making bourbon that only he knows.
When asked what they were he said, "I got to keep some secrets so they can't fire me."

09-11-2008, 19:20
Here's to Jimmy.

From my first sip of WT 101 to the bottle of Rare Breed I finished last night and a whole lot of empty bottles in between, and a few pretty wild times, how could I ever thank you enough?

09-13-2008, 13:58
What an absolute class act!. I'm raising a Russell's Reserve in his honor.

Thanks, Jimmy!

09-13-2008, 16:30
I have been drinking WT all day, and will continue. THe worlds best bourbon