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silverfish
02-24-2011, 04:28
David Perkins & High West awarded Malt Advocate's Pioneer of the Year (http://www.whatdoesjohnknow.com/2011/02/24/malt-advocate-whisky-awards-pioneer-of-the-year-david-perkins-and-high-west/) Award.

callmeox
02-24-2011, 05:45
A pioneer?

The only way this makes sense is if he blends other peoples whiskey in the back of conestoga wagon while wearing clothing from the proper period.

Anyone on this board can take decent well aged whiskey and blend it to make something that tastes good. We do it all the time, but what we lack is financial backing.

It is like giving a DJ a Grammy for the way he plays other people's music on the radio.

smokinjoe
02-24-2011, 07:17
A pioneer?

The only way this makes sense is if he blends other peoples whiskey in the back of conestoga wagon while wearing clothing from the proper period.

Anyone on this board can take decent well aged whiskey and blend it to make something that tastes good. We do it all the time, but what we lack is financial backing.

It is like giving a DJ a Grammy for the way he plays other people's music on the radio.

I agree, Scott. Pioneer.......... tsk, tsk.... Milli Vanilli Award is more like it.

mberkow
02-24-2011, 08:50
It is like giving a DJ a Grammy for the way he plays other people's music on the radio.


Actually for the past several years there is a "Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical" category. Seems to match pretty well.

High West is pioneering in taking the "old world" skill of blending whiskeys that seems to be perfectly respectable and accepted in Scotch and successfully applying it to "new world" American whiskey.

macdeffe
02-24-2011, 09:01
I think your critics are un-intelligent

If it so easy, why didn't You do it and not High West- Whenever someone is doing something great, there is always a group of sheeps saying "That was easy"... :-)

And comparing it to a DJ is just too lame..try to get some focus please

He didn't get an award for serving 6 whiskies in a brilliant order, but for MAKING some great whiskeys!

I think you lack some basic knowledge about whisky (whiskey) blending to be honest, but this could be due to this is a more typical artform this side of the pond!

Big congratulations from Denmark to High West for making some brilliant whiskeys, don't listen to the nay-sayers, they have done nothing for lifting the quality of my whiskey drinking, but I can honestly say High West have.

Steffen

CorvallisCracker
02-24-2011, 09:21
Anyone on this board can take decent well aged whiskey and blend it to make something that tastes good. We do it all the time, but what we lack is financial backing.

Too true. If I had access to 16yo Barton-distilled 80% rye and 6yo LDI 95% rye, I could make some Rendezvous Rye. But I don't, so I had to buy it from High West.

Sure is good though. And, at $38, it's $2 less than (rī)Ļ (Oregon price for the latter). That's two Snickers bars!

macdeffe
02-24-2011, 09:35
Well you also got access to all the raw materials any Michelin restaurant uses, now go cook as good food as they are doing

The fact it that High West did, You guys didn't. That's called PIONEERING when you do something others don't

Columbus "discovered" America..I guess anyone could have done that, if they had access to ships and sailed west..

If you think making good whiskey is as easy as you says, go make better stuff yourself..., and until then stfu

Steffen

sku
02-24-2011, 09:38
A pioneer?

Anyone on this board can take decent well aged whiskey and blend it to make something that tastes good. We do it all the time, but what we lack is financial backing.



Just because I have access to the same ingredients as a great chef, doesn't mean I can make a dish just as good. You need to have a combination of creativity, skill and a great palate to make it work, and High West does that, just like Compass Box and other great Scottish blenders do.

As to being a pioneer, who else is making high quality blends of straight American whiskey from different distillery? No one that I know of. David practically created this category in American whiskey.

And it's hard to remember now that there are dozens of LDI products out there, but David really recognized the beauty of their ryes. Prior to his products, LDI rye was going into blends and export products.

MarkEdwards
02-24-2011, 09:43
Well you also got access to all the raw materials any Michelin restaurant uses, now go cook as good food as they are doing


I think your own analogy is a bit off. If I had access to the FINISHED PRODUCT that a Michelin restaurant uses, not the raw materials, I might be able to combine the finished product in new and exciting ways.

Good on High West for making good blends from finished product, but I'm not quite sure that 'pioneer' fills the bill.

Also, exhorting people who you disagree with to 'stfu' is hardly a winning tactic in a debate on an open forum...

nor02lei
02-24-2011, 09:43
Columbus "discovered" America..
Steffen

No Leif Eriksson from Sweden did. Or at least that is what we think.
Leif

CorvallisCracker
02-24-2011, 09:58
Columbus "discovered" America...


No Leif Eriksson from Sweden did.

Let me ask my Calipooia friend, Chief Bad Water, about this.

"Chief, we're trying to settle a dispute. Who discovered America, Leif Eriksson or Christopher Columbus?

"You people are idiots."

ILLfarmboy
02-24-2011, 13:50
No Leif Eriksson from Sweden did. Or at least that is what we think.
Leif

I thought Erik 'The Red', Leif's father was a Norwegian.

cowdery
02-24-2011, 14:00
There may have been a spelling error. I think he was supposed to win "Potemkin of the Year."

(FYI, although I write for Malt Advocate I have no role in their awards.)

smokinjoe
02-24-2011, 14:09
"STFU...un-intelligent...sheep...lame..." Steff, did my wife put you up to this?? No wait, there would have been a dipshit, in there, too. ;)

Anywho, I've tried some of the HW concoctions. And, I in fact, find them quite good. And, I really don't care how they got there....Really! It's just that when I think of the word "pioneer", I think of something more....substantive?...than, blending. I think of building things, making things from scratch, something from nothing, venturing into new areas (blending's been done, is being done, and will continue to be done. Even with whiskies from different distilleries), pushing the envelope of things that haven't been tried. I don't know, honoring the blending of someone else's investments just seems kinda...flat...to me. Maybe, it's our new love affair with everything "mixologist". Ya know, I would have been more OK if one of HW's whiskies was named "Whiskey of the Year", or "Rye whiskey of the year", or something like that. But, "pioneer", not so much.

cowdery
02-24-2011, 14:16
Okay, here's the real deal. Perkins got caught trying to pass off sourced whiskey as something he made. He quickly invented this story about the fine art of blending and his greatest accomplishment is that he got so many people to fall for it. "Hustler of the Year" is more like it.

Part of it is that people who have invested the considerable price for his product feel better about themselves if they cast themselves as defenders of an unfairly pilloried artisan instead of as what they really are, which is dupes.

But everybody is entitled to their opinion.

macdeffe
02-24-2011, 14:59
Sorry for the harsh words.

I think I should moderate my participation in discussions on this forum. Our basic definitions and approach to the world of whisk(e)y simply doesn't match. Nor does the logic of argumentation. And it's too hard to discuss matters with people if you don't share some kind of basic foundations

Steffen

silverfish
02-24-2011, 15:13
I think I should moderate my participation in discussions on this forum. Our basic definitions and approach to the world of whisk(e)y simply doesn't match. Nor does the logic of argumentation. And it's too hard to discuss matters with people if you don't share some kind of basic foundations


Don't limit your participation just because you may disagree with
someone's views/opinions. If everyone did that, there'd be no one
here.

squire
02-24-2011, 16:21
Chuck would you elaborate on 'got caught' part, within whatever limits of discretion to which you may be bound.

cowdery
02-24-2011, 17:03
By "caught" I mean "exposed." People like me started to write about how this great new rye from a little distillery in Utah was actually from a great big old distillery in Indiana. That's when he suddenly discovered his inner blender.

sku
02-24-2011, 17:48
Okay, here's the real deal. Perkins got caught trying to pass off sourced whiskey as something he made. He quickly invented this story about the fine art of blending and his greatest accomplishment is that he got so many people to fall for it. "Hustler of the Year" is more like it.

Part of it is that people who have invested the considerable price for his product feel better about themselves if they cast themselves as defenders of an unfairly pilloried artisan instead of as what they really are, which is dupes.

Chuck, I don't recall Perkins ever portraying his rye whiskeys as distilled in Utah. The label on Rendezvous always said it was sourced from "back east."

Also, I don't think the dupes characterization is appropriate. I buy High West products will full knowledge that they are sourced whiskey (and have always known it to be so). I do so because I like the product, the same reason I buy Compass Box Scotch. What's the big deal?

cowdery
02-24-2011, 21:44
Okay, Compass Box, now maybe I don't know a lot about scotch, don't have the vocabulary, you know. Just a dumb yank. Can't put things in the proper context, so here's my simple-minded American question. How many scotch blenders are lionized for their fabulous combination of two -- count 'em, two -- component whiskeys?

As for this basic disagreement we're having, we all have access to the same facts and have reached different conclusions. In this case, I'm okay with that. I've always been comfortable with ambiguity. This seems to me a case where two people can reach opposite conclusions from the same set of facts without either of them being wrong.

To me, the thing with Perkins is that from the moment Rendezvous was released, all the press about it talked about this rye whiskey 'made' by this little distillery in Utah. Nothing about blending, nothing about sourcing. The whole angle was that it was this Utah-made product. So we're left, as we often are, arguing about the definition of 'made.'

At that point the distillery didn't even exist. It was only after people like me started writing that he couldn't have 'made' this 14-year-old rye (or whatever it is) when he just got his license two months ago. Only then did we start to hear about this great blender.

I recount that to say, that's just me. And that was long before I tasted the stuff. That's how I came to it. Other people came to it differently. I don't see any point in me trying to convince you or you trying to convince me. I respect the conclusions of people who see this differently than I do. I'm not trying to change anybody's mind. I'm just writing this to offer an insight into why I feel as I do about it.

I am, in fact, sucking on some LDI whiskey right now (not David's) and it's having its way with me.

macdeffe
02-24-2011, 21:59
Okay, Compass Box, now maybe I don't know a lot about scotch, don't have the vocabulary, you know. Just a dumb yank. Can't put things in the proper context, so here's my simple-minded American question. How many scotch blenders are lionized for their fabulous combination of two -- count 'em, two -- component whiskeys?

Quite a lot

Compass Box for one. I named their Double Single my whisky of the year 2010. They have other 2 components whiskies out, one was a pure grain

Double Barrel by OMC

A lot of bottlings, especially IB's are vatting of two casks, a bit more rare is 3 casks, but this is done as much for pumping up the volume as for blending reasons

DTC Lonach series is vatting of understrength whiskies with stronger ones to make 40+ whiskies

There are other's out there, LapBeg etc. can't think of more right out of my head. In my opinion it's one of the hardest catagories of whiskies to excellence in, the two components has to work together and improve each other, not bland together and nullify.

Double Single by CB is an unusual whisky but probably the best example

Another example, but here I am stretching the catagory a lot, is Arran Peacock which is a vatting of ex-bourbon casks and ex-sherry casks. It's just a very good example of how two types of whisky works together, but I dont think it belongs in the mentioned catagory

Steffen

PS. I am with Sku here. I never got the idea that HW was making those Rye's themselves, and I always wondered how anyone could think that

cowdery
02-24-2011, 22:12
Another part of the issue here is how different the U.S. market is for bulk whiskey. Even if a scotch blender winds of making a blend of two components, I assume he has had the opportunity to taste many in order to select those two. In the U.S., you're lucky if you can find a source for two different whiskeys, let alone a broad portfolio to chose from. How much skill is being applied when you simply mix together the only two whiskeys you could get? I'm not saying that's what Perkins did (or didn't do), but that's the nature of the current bulk whiskey market in the USA.

And, sure, serendipity is always a factor, and I'm not saying you're wrong or trying to change your mind.

Parkersback
02-25-2011, 02:51
I've sort of been thinking this is like when someone on sports radio says, "I could be the General Manager of the local team if I had the opportunity, and be just as successful as the current guy."

And the thing is, the guy on sports radio is sort of right. If someone who has a good, working knowledge of baseball was the GM of a team, he (or she) could probably do much of what a GM does (analyze talent, try to build a team that fits together, etc.) And if you're the general manager of the Yankees (or Red Sox or some other organization with a huge budget), part of what you do is kind of a no-brainer: you're not really restricted financially. You just pick the best players you can find and try to hire them, then you sit back and watch. Their playing is not your product, even though you may get praised or criticized for it.

But being the GM of the Yankees or Red Sox is more than picking the most talented players. It consists of the politics of dealing with your owner, schmoozing with agents, negotiating contracts, dealing with the media, etc., etc.

Maybe there is some similarity here, in that David Perkins isn't just mixing whiskey. He had to set a long-term vision for the company, raise the money, deal with his employees, negotiate with distilleries, market his product, etc. etc, etc.

It could be he didn't do that as wisely as he might of, as Chuck alludes to. I'm not making a comment on him particularly, I have no idea. If he or the company ever tried to deceive anyone that they were making the whiskey in the bottles, that's bad form, sure. Maybe they did, maybe they didn't, there seems to be some dispute on that point, and again, I do not know.

I'm just saying that maybe what John Hansell is recognizing him for is wider than simply mixing two whiskeys in a bottle. When it comes to vatting whiskeys, I'm sure there are many folks on SB who are just as skilled at it as David Perkins, maybe even moreso. (I'd love to try some of Gillman's concoctions). But there's more to it than just that.

And just to be clear: I do not know any of the people involved here, and I've never had any High West products. No dog in this hunt, just some thoughts.

trumpstylz
02-25-2011, 03:59
Just thought I'd chime in: I'm not really sure whether they deserved distiller/pioneer of the year.

But I do know one thing: they hunt down/source/bottle/sell some damn fine rye (rezendevous rye) and have an interesting brewpub type thing that they seem to have done well with (maybe not pioneered, but navigated through foggy seas).

And I also like the idea of putting a distillery in a place where you wouldn't normally think one might flourish (nothing against mormons or skiiers).

callmeox
02-25-2011, 05:48
Sorry for the harsh words.

I think I should moderate my participation in discussions on this forum. Our basic definitions and approach to the world of whisk(e)y simply doesn't match. Nor does the logic of argumentation. And it's too hard to discuss matters with people if you don't share some kind of basic foundations

Steffen

Gosh, that is a shame. Your "agree with me or STFU" attitude will be missed.

doubleblank
02-25-2011, 08:29
Well, it's John's award to give out, so he can define the term "pioneer" any way he wants to. But I don't think what David Perkins is doing meets even a broad definition of "pioneer". To wit

1. Blending whiskies has long been practiced in the US both prior and following Prohibition. I agree that we haven't seen much blending of straights and/or other whiskies in our lifetimes, but it was very common prior to the '50's. By definition a "pioneer" is the first (or amongst the first) to do things in any enterprise/endeavor/etc. David has "resurrected" the practice of blending, not created it.

2. "Pioneers" generally "blaze new trails", "develop new methods", etc that others may ultimately use to their betterment. What David (and others like him) have done is to take advantage of a very limited supply of surplus stocks of whiskey and got them to the market. Enterprising.....absolutely.....pioneering.....no.

I have enjoyed David's products in the past and wish him luck in his current distilling operations. But if asked about the term "pioneer", David's operations would not have come to mind.

Oh wait.......High West......."pioneer"......maybe there is a tie-in.

Randy

Josh
02-25-2011, 08:37
Well, it's John's award to give out, so he can define the term "pioneer" any way he wants to. But I don't think what David Perkins is doing meets even a broad definition of "pioneer". To wit

1. Blending whiskies has long been practiced in the US both prior and following Prohibition. I agree that we haven't seen much blending of straights and/or other whiskies in our lifetimes, but it was very common prior to the '50's. By definition a "pioneer" is the first (or amongst the first) to do things in any enterprise/endeavor/etc. David has "resurrected" the practice of blending, not created it.

2. "Pioneers" generally "blaze new trails", "develop new methods", etc that others may ultimately use to their betterment. What David (and others like him) have done is to take advantage of a very limited supply of surplus stocks of whiskey and got them to the market. Enterprising.....absolutely.....pioneering.....no.

I have enjoyed David's products in the past and wish him luck in his current distilling operations. But if asked about the term "pioneer", David's operations would not have come to mind.

Oh wait.......High West......."pioneer"......maybe there is a tie-in.

Randy

What he said. :IagreeRandy:

p_elliott
02-25-2011, 09:40
[quote=macdeffe;235566

If you think making good whiskey is as easy as you says, go make better stuff yourself..., and until then stfu

Steffen[/quote]


Steffen

I hate to see you holding back like this why don't you tell us how you really feel. :slappin:

Paul

nor02lei
02-25-2011, 10:10
[quote=sku;235567]
As to being a pioneer, who else is making high quality blends of straight American whiskey from different distillery? No one that I know of. David practically created this category in American whiskey.

quote]

I have seen several old-timers in auctions that are blends of straight ryes. I have bought 1 or 2 miniatures. I did find one empty bottle and it say Melrose blended straight rye whiskies, 6 years old and it seem to have been bottled 1947. Thereby itís not anything new, but rather taking up something that has been asleep for a long time. Making whiskey from oatmeal that many micro distilleries are making is another example of the same. A dammed good thing if you ask me.
Leif

nor02lei
02-25-2011, 10:26
I do agree partly with both sides. I donít doubt that many members here cold do as good or better blends with the same material. However you have to get this material and do it in a commercial level. None of the big American blending firms (many of them members here) have got assess to this much different ryes as it seems to me and made blends of them. David did do that so thatís the thing that makes him a pioneer as I see it.

Leif

trumpstylz
02-25-2011, 13:48
Im still not sure they necessarily deserved pioneer of the year. But, that being said, I feel that of all the small operations going on right now (notice I didn't use the word "distillery"), they seem to be getting the best results.

Just my humble opinion (I don't claim to be anywhere near the expert others on here seem to be).

Also- I kind of like all the controversy that this award has stirred up.

kickert
02-25-2011, 14:07
What High West is doing doesn't bother me, but it is hardly pioneering.

Josh
02-25-2011, 15:37
Also- I kind of like all the controversy that this award has stirred up.

I get the feeling that Malt Advocate does too.:grin:

sailor22
02-25-2011, 15:41
All you grumpy grouches are missing some good juice if you pass on HW products because of some PR flacks over enthusiasm awhile ago.
Without his determined enthusiasm most that tasty stuff he bottles would be flavoring some milktoast Canadian whiskey and I never would have had the opportunity to taste it.
I have always found David to be a straight up honest and willing to answer any question I asked.
Congrats on the award David.

Rughi
02-25-2011, 16:44
The person who puts the good whiskey into a bottle that I can buy gets my vote. High West has been doing a great job of doing exactly that.

High West is a pioneer for the same reason that Van Winkle and KBD are: they get the great whiskey out of hidden corners of warehouses and away from mediocre vattings to let us have taste experiences the stodgy old marketing didn't think anyone would or even should want.

The distilleries are starting to catch up, first with timid, limited releases (BTAC, Parker's) that are now in full bloom and soon perhaps whole product lines (Four Roses Private Selection) to do battle with the tiny producers who are leading the way.

That is why High West is a pioneer.

smokinjoe
02-25-2011, 17:58
The person who puts the good whiskey into a bottle that I can buy gets my vote. High West has been doing a great job of doing exactly that.

High West is a pioneer for the same reason that Van Winkle and KBD are: they get the great whiskey out of hidden corners of warehouses and away from mediocre vattings to let us have taste experiences the stodgy old marketing didn't think anyone would or even should want.

The distilleries are starting to catch up, first with timid, limited releases (BTAC, Parker's) that are now in full bloom and soon perhaps whole product lines (Four Roses Private Selection) to do battle with the tiny producers who are leading the way.

That is why High West is a pioneer.

But, Roger, if as you say "High West is a pioneer for the same reason that Van Winkle and KBD are"...doesn't that run counter to the idea of "pioneer"? Particulary, since both, (and as you rightly include BT's BTAC) were around years before HW even existed?

The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced...No way. I just don't see anything "pioneering" about what High West does. But, it ain't my award to give. But...BUT....my opinion and 99 cents will get you a cup of coffee at McDonald's. :D

ErichPryde
02-25-2011, 18:28
By "caught" I mean "exposed." People like me started to write about how this great new rye from a little distillery in Utah was actually from a great big old distillery in Indiana. That's when he suddenly discovered his inner blender.

I never saw any of the first release labels but it seems to me that you jumped all over High West for misrepresenting themselves and then had to back it way off when you realized that they did in fact clear that up all over the label, and you had jumped the gun bigtime.

Admit it Chuck. You don't like rectifiers, and you don't like David Perkins.

Perkins has demonstrated a lot of skill with what he does, and he is doing something else that no one else has been doing lately.... and he does a damn good job of it.

At least you stick to your opinion, and loudly- unlike some people in the whiskey business. I respect you for that, Chuck.

I gotta say I hate hearing it when people say things like "I could be doing it better." You could what? make a better touchdown? coach a better team? blend a better whiskey? Then quit your damn job, take the risk, and do it.

If not a "pioneering award" then Perkins definitely deserved some sort of recognition. He's one of the best rectifiers in the business.



Give him the shrewd businessperson award, then. He recognized that Rye was on a rebound and although risky, he could make a good whiskey and some good money rectifying and blending. I don't think the Van Winkles buying whiskey from what used to be their families distillery 40 years ago is the same thing at all.

Josh
02-25-2011, 19:01
I buy and enjoy HW products and bear no ill will toward David Perkins. But what Perkins is doing is no different than what Parker & Craig Beam do or Jimmy Russell does. They all take whiskeys of different ages from the same distillery and blend them together to produce a yummy product. I don't see the difference, really. OK, so Perkins also blended a bourbon and a rye together to make a yummy product. That's something. But again, I don't think that qualfies him as a pioneer.

What I don't understand is why so many people jump to his defense when the least bit of skeptism is shot his way. It's almost as bad as the Justin Bieber fans jumping on Esperanza Spaulding a couple weeks ago.

kickert
02-25-2011, 19:14
Josh, I think you are right on.

The best analogy is probably what is going on at Four Rose every day. 10 recipes, and countless phenomenal products. The folks there have the ability to make good whiskey AND the ability to blend across diverse offerings to create stunning whiskeys.

Halifax
02-25-2011, 19:25
Is this any different from Austin, Nichols. Didn't they source their bourbon before buying a distillery? Seems like if you enjoy the product... then why the fuss. It's just money. If you like it... Buy it. Who gives a shit that someone else thinks your pissing your money away?

kickert
02-25-2011, 19:32
Is this any different from Austin, Nichols. Didn't they source their bourbon before buying a distillery? Seems like if you enjoy the product... then why the fuss. It's just money. If you like it... Buy it. Who gives a shit that someone else thinks your pissing your money away?

I haven't heard anyone critique the actual products being produced by HW... far from it actually... I just think most of us disagree what is going on there is pioneering in anyway.

Halifax
02-25-2011, 19:42
I haven't heard anyone critique the actual products being produced by HW... far from it actually... I just think most of us disagree what is going on there is pioneering in anyway.

I can agree with that. There is a difference between a pioneer and a capitalist. Bourbon often reminds me of my days in college when I rolled that fat chick at a frat party. At the end of the day... what was on the inside mattered most. :skep:

ErichPryde
02-25-2011, 20:25
What I don't understand is why so many people jump to his defense when the least bit of skeptism is shot his way. It's almost as bad as the Justin Bieber fans jumping on Esperanza Spaulding a couple weeks ago.

Skepticism is fine.... But do you think Chuck's posts both here and on his blog are the least bit of skepticism?

kickert
02-25-2011, 21:21
Skepticism is fine.... But do you think Chuck's posts both here and on his blog are the least bit of skepticism?

Ahh.... Chuck is crotchety... we all know that.

cowdery
02-25-2011, 23:45
Since ErichPriyde wants to put such a fine point on it, here is what happened way back when.

When I made my first posts about High West, prompted by some inquiry I received about "this new rye from Utah," the only information I could find about them was in articles in Utah lifestyle publications, all of which either stated or strongly implied that the whiskey was made in Utah. Though I don't recall if I ever found the actual press release, the pieces were all obviously based on one.

I posted, pointing out that a brand new distillery in Utah couldn't have made a 16-year-old rye, and that this sounded like Templeton, which was also in my sights for the same thing. High West had a URL but it linked to the host's "Under Construction" page. A few days later the first, single-page web site for High West appeared and acknowledged that they had sourced this whiskey to sell, you know, until their own whiskey was ready. I acknowledged the web site's appearance and issued a correction.

At that point I was under attack from Templeton's sock puppets. Soon Perkins and his sock puppets joined in. It was all very defensive and wasn't I just a meany, and a shill for Big Whiskey, and all that.

The whole Master Blender thing came much later.

I have since had several pleasant conversations with both David Perkins and Scott Bush but that's how it began. So if that's backing off big time, fine.

And I am like Esperanza Spaulding in so many ways.

ErichPryde
02-26-2011, 00:24
Put such a fine point on it?


I wasn't around when Perkins first started selling his product, so I don't know what was claimed. Maybe he did try to pull one over everybody's eyes and sell a 16 year old whiskey as something he made himself. Maybe the first run of labels were different than the current ones. Maybe when Perkins said that you didn't try very hard to track him down he was lying.

Maybe. but since then he's been very, very transparent with his information. Significantly more transparent than many of the rectifiers out there.


Part of it is that people who have invested the considerable price for his product feel better about themselves if they cast themselves as defenders of an unfairly pilloried artisan instead of as what they really are, which is dupes.

Because the whiskey isn't good, or because he didn't make it himself? Because it's too expensive? California costco has Rendevous available for under 40 bucks. Is that too much to pay for that type of thing?

I guess with your logic we should also feel sorry for all of the people buying PVW, man are they getting ripped off. And after the Van Winkles sold the distillery, all the stuff they were bottling then (including some late runs of Very Old Fitzgerald), well those must have been garbage too, right?

Your posts in this thread alone make it very clear what you think of Perkins and High West. You've got a lot of transparency from Perkins now... is the potemkin horse dead?

cowdery
02-26-2011, 00:32
Your posts in this thread alone make it very clear what you think of Perkins and High West.

Agreed.


You've got a lot of transparency from Perkins now... is the potemkin horse dead?

You're beating it too, my man. I'm the one saying, "this is just me, I get where y'all are coming from."

Josh
02-26-2011, 05:04
Skepticism is fine.... But do you think Chuck's posts both here and on his blog are the least bit of skepticism?

I'm not talking about Chuck's posts, I'm talking about when I or others say "I like HW stuff but I don't think they're that innovative" or "I like HW stuff but you can't compare them to Compass Box b/c the Scotch world is totally different" or something mild like that and I get a bunch of people jumping down my throat.

wadewood
02-26-2011, 05:33
John Hansell started out this award by saying it was going to be controversial. It is his award so he can give to anyone he wants. However, we are free to bash him on his blog and these boards. I don't think David Perkins is a "Pioneer" and thought this was a terrible choice. I know John reads this board, I called him a sell out on his blog for this selection - which was just plain mean - John - sorry for that, but hey still think you made a dumb decision on this award.

Leopold
02-26-2011, 08:18
But what Perkins is doing is no different than what Parker & Craig Beam do or Jimmy Russell does. They all take whiskeys of different ages from the same distillery and blend them together to produce a yummy product. I don't see the difference, really.

Respectfully, this is insane.

You're comparing a guy with a phone and a few months of distilling experience, to actual real life distillers with more hands on experience mashing, fermenting, distilling, and aging whiskey than anyone in the world. They actually made the whiskey that they are blending.

I promise you that Mr. Perkins knows how different he is from the gentlemen you mentioned.

I'm starting on my 16th year of my career, and I have to do that 3 more times before I've been at it as long as Jimmy Russell. At this point, I'm a flash in the pan, and he's the real McCoy. You can count Mr. Perkins distilling career in months.

No offense to Mr. Perkins, as I am quite confident he'll agree with my assessment.

And no offense to you Josh, but I respectfully disagree with this statement. You're not the only one who think that, as an example, John Glaser is the same thing as a distiller. You guys should grab a few of your favorite bottles and a graduated cylinder. You'll come up with a blend you love in no time, I can assure you.

callmeox
02-26-2011, 08:37
Respectfully, this is insane.
You guys should grab a few of your favorite bottles and a graduated cylinder. You'll come up with a blend you love in no time, I can assure you.

I made the same assertion in the comments section on John's "pioneer" blog entry and was treated like a heretic by his minions.

As these are all consumer choices, I think the visceral reaction is that their choice was validated by a "expert" and anyone who counters that validation threatens their consumer standing.

Leopold
02-26-2011, 08:44
I want to be clear in saying that I think that it's great that Mr. Perkins won this award, and that there's nothing wrong with blending. I support what Mr. Perkins is doing.

But please don't conflate blenders with distillers. It's not the same thing. At all.

SMOWK
02-26-2011, 09:48
Josh, I think you are right on.

The best analogy is probably what is going on at Four Rose every day. 10 recipes, and countless phenomenal products. The folks there have the ability to make good whiskey AND the ability to blend across diverse offerings to create stunning whiskeys.

I don't think Four Roses makes very good whiskey at all. The fact that High West has taken tips from Jim Rutledge scares me.

Josh
02-26-2011, 10:54
Respectfully, this is insane.

You're comparing a guy with a phone and a few months of distilling experience, to actual real life distillers with more hands on experience mashing, fermenting, distilling, and aging whiskey than anyone in the world. They actually made the whiskey that they are blending.

I promise you that Mr. Perkins knows how different he is from the gentlemen you mentioned.

I'm starting on my 16th year of my career, and I have to do that 3 more times before I've been at it as long as Jimmy Russell. At this point, I'm a flash in the pan, and he's the real McCoy. You can count Mr. Perkins distilling career in months.

No offense to Mr. Perkins, as I am quite confident he'll agree with my assessment.

And no offense to you Josh, but I respectfully disagree with this statement. You're not the only one who think that, as an example, John Glaser is the same thing as a distiller. You guys should grab a few of your favorite bottles and a graduated cylinder. You'll come up with a blend you love in no time, I can assure you.

Read some more of what I have posted on the subject. Then you will see that you have taken my comments completely out of context. Life is too short to flame people who actually agree with you.

SMOWK
02-26-2011, 10:59
You're comparing a guy with a phone and a few months of distilling experience, to actual real life distillers with more hands on experience mashing, fermenting, distilling, and aging whiskey than anyone in the world. They actually made the whiskey that they are blending.

Considering a lot of people really like HW products, David must be one hell of a fast learner.

Josh
02-26-2011, 11:56
I've clarified my statement via pm to Todd but I should probably do it here too.

I was trying to say the following:

One aspect of what the Beams and Rutledge and the Russells do is mixing barrels of different ages together. David Perkins also does this. That was my only point.

Do they do a hell of a lot more? Yes. They create the same whiskeys they marry together. There's a lot of craft in doing that, at least as much as in mixing.

Leopold
02-26-2011, 12:18
Considering a lot of people really like HW products, David must be one hell of a fast learner.


You misunderstood what I'm saying. A lot of people like what I'm doing, too, but that doesn't mean that you should be mentioning me in the same sentence as Jimmy Russell. I don't mean disrespect to Mr. Perkins. And for the record, I really like High West's spirits, too. His oat unaged spirit is lovely.

A little respect for the old guard isn't a bad thing.

Leopold
02-26-2011, 12:23
I've clarified my statement via pm to Todd but I should probably do it here too.

I was trying to say the following:

One aspect of what the Beams and Rutledge and the Russells do is mixing barrels of different ages together. David Perkins also does this. That was my only point.

Do they do a hell of a lot more? Yes. They create the same whiskeys they marry together. There's a lot of craft in doing that, at least as much as in mixing.

If you don't mind me adding to this, Mr. Russell and the other whiskey distillers aren't doing the same thing in another way. The distillers can tailor every step of their processes--- grain bill, yeast selection, barrel selection, rickhouse selection, etc.--- with an eye towards the final blend. A blender, except in very unique circumstances, doesn't have a hand in any of these steps.

As an example, I only make single-singles for my American whiskies. But I tailor my entire production with the notion that I'm not going to blend.

Make sense?

Edit to add--- Josh, I apologize for misunderstanding your post.

Josh
02-26-2011, 12:41
If you don't mind me adding to this, Mr. Russell and the other whiskey distillers aren't doing the same thing in another way. The distillers can tailor every step of their processes--- grain bill, yeast selection, barrel selection, rickhouse selection, etc.--- with an eye towards the final blend. A blender, except in very unique circumstances, doesn't have a hand in any of these steps.

As an example, I only make single-singles for my American whiskies. But I tailor my entire production with the notion that I'm not going to blend.

Make sense?

Edit to add--- Josh, I apologize for misunderstanding your post.

Excellent points. And no apology needed. I should have been more clear in the first place. I hope to be able to pick up a bottle of your whiskey sometime!

jinenjo
02-26-2011, 13:34
Final word: He's only a pioneer if he wears a coon-skin cap.

squire
02-26-2011, 17:25
Very informative discussion.

MarkEdwards
02-27-2011, 08:56
Final word: He's only a pioneer if he wears a coon-skin cap.

Actually, he's only a pioneer if his ears are made of pions.

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=pion

silverfish
02-28-2011, 04:54
David Driscoll offers up some thoughts on this "controversy" on his blog (http://spiritsjournal.klwines.com/klwinescom-spirits-blog/2011/2/26/david-perkins-pioneer.html)
and lets us know that David Perkins will be a podcast guest later this
week.

notamormon
02-28-2011, 08:00
Hi all,
David Perkins here. Provocative thread to say the least. Of course I'm honored and humbled to be named a Pioneer. Not here to agree or disagree with anyone's opinions on that. Everyone is right, blending isn't rocket science and every distillery does it in some form that I was able to "learn" from (I covered that in another SB post). I'd never compare myself to Parker Beam or Jimmy Russell or Jim Rutledge or John Glaser. They have been doing this all their lives and are titans in this industry. I still like Chuck and agree with his objective: smoke out inaccuracies and BS. However, to clarify again, as I have in several older SB posts, Chuck's facts were not correct from the beginning and I need to point out Chuck's inaccuracies. High West never had an "under construction" page. High West did have a very simple 3 page site that had the text from our back labels on them. And yes the text on our back label said "we sourced the whiskies from back east." It always did. On the simple site, we had a picture of our still, and we also talked about our vodka which High West has distilled since 2007 after we got our DSP. And I think everyone gets it that it would be hard for me to claim that I made a 16 year old whiskey when I've only been in the business since I quit my job in 2004. I'm not going to get into the rest of the details here again because I think I've covered it in great depth in several other SB posts.

And for some fun facts: High West doesn't just blend old and young whiskey from one distillery (LDI). We actually have whiskeys from Four Roses, Barton, and LDI. Rendezvous blends 6yo LDI with 16yo Barton. Double Rye! blends 2yo LDI and 16 year old Barton. The fun part is, the 16yo's have different mashbills. In Rendezvous, the 16yo has 80% rye, 10% corn, and 10% malt. This was a real shocker to people to know there was an older rye with that high of a rye mashbill. The 16yo in Double Rye has a more conventional rye whiskey mashbill with 53% rye, 37% corn, and 10% malt. Was I lucky when I sourced these? Very! And Bourye is a blend of Four Roses, LDI, and Barton.

Hope that clarifies just a little bit. Thanks to everyone for taking an interest in the discussion, no matter what your opinion!

Josh
02-28-2011, 08:32
Thanks for the clarifications David! How did you get your hands on the Four Roses? Was it obtained from 4R directly or through Diageo?

nor02lei
02-28-2011, 08:35
Hi all,
David Perkins here. Provocative thread to say the least. Of course I'm honored and humbled to be named a Pioneer. Not here to agree or disagree with anyone's opinions on that. Everyone is right, blending isn't rocket science and every distillery does it in some form that I was able to "learn" from (I covered that in another SB post). I'd never compare myself to Parker Beam or Jimmy Russell or Jim Rutledge or John Glaser. They have been doing this all their lives and are titans in this industry. I still like Chuck and agree with his objective: smoke out inaccuracies and BS. However, to clarify again, as I have in several older SB posts, Chuck's facts were not correct from the beginning and I need to point out Chuck's inaccuracies. High West never had an "under construction" page. High West did have a very simple 3 page site that had the text from our back labels on them. And yes the text on our back label said "we sourced the whiskies from back east." It always did. On the simple site, we had a picture of our still, and we also talked about our vodka which High West has distilled since 2007 after we got our DSP. And I think everyone gets it that it would be hard for me to claim that I made a 16 year old whiskey when I've only been in the business since I quit my job in 2004. I'm not going to get into the rest of the details here again because I think I've covered it in great depth in several other SB posts.

And for some fun facts: High West doesn't just blend old and young whiskey from one distillery (LDI). We actually have whiskeys from Four Roses, Barton, and LDI. Rendezvous blends 6yo LDI with 16yo Barton. Double Rye! blends 2yo LDI and 16 year old Barton. The fun part is, the 16yo's have different mashbills. In Rendezvous, the 16yo has 80% rye, 10% corn, and 10% malt. This was a real shocker to people to know there was an older rye with that high of a rye mashbill. The 16yo in Double Rye has a more conventional rye whiskey mashbill with 53% rye, 37% corn, and 10% malt. Was I lucky when I sourced these? Very! And Bourye is a blend of Four Roses, LDI, and Barton.

Hope that clarifies just a little bit. Thanks to everyone for taking an interest in the discussion, no matter what your opinion!

Witch of the 2 mashbills is in your 16 years bottling Dave?

Leif

JohnHansell
02-28-2011, 08:57
Hope that clarifies just a little bit. Thanks to everyone for taking an interest in the discussion, no matter what your opinion!

Thanks for taking the time to clarify, David. Nicely said.

Leopold
02-28-2011, 09:22
Very humble response. I've said it before elsewhere, but congratulations.

Then one part I didn't mention is to explain to some that don't quite understand why Mr. Hansell gave him the Pioneer Award.

I can't speak for Mr. Hansell, obviously, but it is very unlikely that Mr. Perkins is the last to try the approach of blending as well as distilling. In fact, I can name two other shops that are also purchasing bulk whiskey for blending right now, with the notion of building a cash reserve for later activities. This method will, in the end, lead to more whiskey for you chaps to buy from new distilleries. Mr. Perkins was the 1st to use this model, so far as I'm aware. So the award makes sense, as others will surely follow his lead. Which is kinda neat.

Well, that's not entirely true. We purchased select barrels of Pisco starting in 2003 that we did nothing more than dilute with water and sell at our onsite pub in Ann Arbor. But that was Pisco, and it was from a single source, and outside of selecting barrels that I preferred over others for a final blend, it wasn't the same kind of blending. And it certainly wasn't whiskey, which is what this award is for....

I think that the award makes sense. Are there other deserving candidates? Sure, but there always are for these sorts of things. It's sour grapes not to congratulate receiving such a prestigious award!

White Dog
02-28-2011, 10:30
Hi all,
David Perkins here. Provocative thread to say the least. Of course I'm honored and humbled to be named a Pioneer. Not here to agree or disagree with anyone's opinions on that. Everyone is right, blending isn't rocket science and every distillery does it in some form that I was able to "learn" from (I covered that in another SB post). I'd never compare myself to Parker Beam or Jimmy Russell or Jim Rutledge or John Glaser. They have been doing this all their lives and are titans in this industry. I still like Chuck and agree with his objective: smoke out inaccuracies and BS. However, to clarify again, as I have in several older SB posts, Chuck's facts were not correct from the beginning and I need to point out Chuck's inaccuracies. High West never had an "under construction" page. High West did have a very simple 3 page site that had the text from our back labels on them. And yes the text on our back label said "we sourced the whiskies from back east." It always did. On the simple site, we had a picture of our still, and we also talked about our vodka which High West has distilled since 2007 after we got our DSP. And I think everyone gets it that it would be hard for me to claim that I made a 16 year old whiskey when I've only been in the business since I quit my job in 2004. I'm not going to get into the rest of the details here again because I think I've covered it in great depth in several other SB posts.

And for some fun facts: High West doesn't just blend old and young whiskey from one distillery (LDI). We actually have whiskeys from Four Roses, Barton, and LDI. Rendezvous blends 6yo LDI with 16yo Barton. Double Rye! blends 2yo LDI and 16 year old Barton. The fun part is, the 16yo's have different mashbills. In Rendezvous, the 16yo has 80% rye, 10% corn, and 10% malt. This was a real shocker to people to know there was an older rye with that high of a rye mashbill. The 16yo in Double Rye has a more conventional rye whiskey mashbill with 53% rye, 37% corn, and 10% malt. Was I lucky when I sourced these? Very! And Bourye is a blend of Four Roses, LDI, and Barton.

Hope that clarifies just a little bit. Thanks to everyone for taking an interest in the discussion, no matter what your opinion!

Thank you for responding, David. When you sourced the Barton was it owned by Constellation or Sazerac?

Am I the only one wondering why Barton is selling off 16yr Rye rather than creating a label and releasing it to market?!?:shocked: :bigeyes:

Once again, if any majors are listening, if you have any aged Rye sitting around, I'm sure there are at least hundreds of SBers who are dying to try it. Just don't price it above $100. Trust me, if you have mature rye stocks, they will sell. It's mind boggling to me that they would sell it to High West. Good for you, David, but wow!

squire
02-28-2011, 11:38
Clarifying and informative David, thanks for dropping by.

notamormon
02-28-2011, 13:36
A quick follow-up to a few questions:
- Josh: I got the Four Roses through Pernod Ricard. When I told Jim Rutledge this, he didn't even know Pernod had Four Roses stock!
- Whitedog (!): I also got the Barton from Pernod who got it from Hiram Walker when they bought Hiram. No one knows how Hiram got it.
- Leif: we bottled the 80% rye 16 year old (10% corn 10% malt) I thought it was so unusual and beautiful I has to sell it on its own.
- John and Squire: you are welcome!

Josh
02-28-2011, 16:13
A quick follow-up to a few questions:
- Josh: I got the Four Roses through Pernod Ricard. When I told Jim Rutledge this, he didn't even know Pernod had Four Roses stock!
- Whitedog (!): I also got the Barton from Pernod who got it from Hiram Walker when they bought Hiram. No one knows how Hiram got it.
- Leif: we bottled the 80% rye 16 year old (10% corn 10% malt) I thought it was so unusual and beautiful I has to sell it on its own.
- John and Squire: you are welcome!

I love answers that raise even more questions.

Thanks for the response!

callmeox
02-28-2011, 16:41
Great info David. Thanks for taking the time to participate.

silverfish
03-01-2011, 06:54
The aforementioned Driscoll/Perkins podcast is now on-line (http://spiritsjournal.klwines.com/klwinescom-spirits-blog/2011/2/28/podcast-9-high-wests-david-perkins.html).

jmpyle
03-01-2011, 18:26
Chuck, the ire and vitriol you have over a distillery and blending house in Utah is beyond weird. I would love to take a couple paper sacks and sneak some of High West's products when you are doing your blind tastings. If I hadn't read about your judging them here or there I'd frankly think you've never sipped a drop of their stuff.

David Perkins hasn't lied, is as forthcoming as anyone, and makes a great product. And on top of that he's the only one doing what he's doing. Not only is he sourcing some great ryes that somebody else didn't have the smarts, guts, or business model to put on the market, he's also blending them to create something greater than the sum of its parts. John Hansell absolutely nailed this one from my viewpoint. Who else is doing this? I also think they are doing pioneering work in crashing through the opinions of many of the "old guard" (hmm hmm) and paving the way to making this an acceptable practice.

Mind you I have no dog in this hunt. Frankly I don't know why I feel so compelled to respond when I read these silly arguments you make against them. Other than the fact I'm for companies/people that put great whiskey in bottles. That's what matters to me. Your making up things about how they are a bunch of liars doesn't make your comments very credible to me.

Yes I realize you are absolutely one of the most informed American Whiskey guys in this country. You might have even forgotten more than I know. But when it comes to this argument you are surely living up to your "crotchety" signature.

You're also coming across as uninformed. Making a statement about blending 2 whiskeys vs. however many is just silly. You should know better than anyone that there is no 1 way to blend. Nothing states a blend is inferior if it has 2 vs. 22 whiskeys in it. John Glaser in some cases has only blended 2 primary whiskeys. Double Single for example. Bad example because I don't love this one, but it's highly acclaimed. Sometimes Compass Box only blends 2. Is that far from 3?

I realize there is no convincing you, but I think you need a better perspective here. The griping over high west 4-6 times a year is, as mentioned, weird.

jmpyle
03-01-2011, 18:52
I buy and enjoy HW products and bear no ill will toward David Perkins. But what Perkins is doing is no different than what Parker & Craig Beam do or Jimmy Russell does. They all take whiskeys of different ages from the same distillery and blend them together to produce a yummy product. I don't see the difference, really. OK, so Perkins also blended a bourbon and a rye together to make a yummy product. That's something. But again, I don't think that qualfies him as a pioneer.

Josh, I realize what a thorough debater you are. I'm no match for one of our 5 pagers that we got into once before. :lol: Besides I think we rounded the bend a little bit in that discussion.

However, I seem to remember trying to make the same argument (in terms of blending) about Four Roses. While you've chosen Wild Turkey and Heaven Hill above, I think I remember your not agreeing with my point that first time I brought it up.

But anyways, I think this is a bit different firstly because David's not blending whiskey he has distilled. Secondly, the focal point has been on Rye for High West. That's sort of been their calling card. Rendezvous came out about 3 years ago.

cigarnv
03-02-2011, 13:03
Clearly I am not the brightest bulb in the socket but... weren't those folks who sold everything, bought a covered wagon and risked everything to travel west and follow their dream called Pioneers??

Possibly David is more of a pioneer than most....

Rughi
03-02-2011, 18:07
Utah is the only state that has a holiday called Pioneer Day.
Maybe you have to be from Utah to get a Pioneer Award!
:)

p_elliott
03-03-2011, 09:16
Listen to this http://spiritsjournal.klwines.com/klwinescom-spirits-blog/2011/2/28/podcast-9-high-wests-david-perkins.html

CorvallisCracker
03-03-2011, 10:19
Top Ten Qualifications for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

10. You ferment your mash with wild yeasts captured at various points along the Oregon Trail
9. Your "Four Grain" bottling is made from corn, wild rice, amaranth and malted teocinte
8. You age your whiskey in barrels made from hickory
7. Every bottle is furnished with a small coonskin cap. At your Visitors Center, tourists can place the caps on their own bottles
6. Your favorite song is R. Dean Taylor's biggest hit
5. Your still is heated by a furnace that uses dried bison dung
4. You're not an immigrant from a Scandinavian country, or the child of one
3. You don't even know how to spell "Potemkin"
2. You're the only craft whiskey distiller in the USA not selling white dog

and the Number One Qualification for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

1. Despite numerous rebuffs (and several restraining orders) you're still trying to marry into the Boone family

sku
03-03-2011, 11:28
Top Ten Qualifications for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

7. Every bottle is furnished with a small coonskin cap. At your Visitors Center, tourists can place the caps on their own bottles



Or alternatively,

SBOmarc
03-03-2011, 11:32
Top Ten Qualifications for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

10. You ferment your mash with wild yeasts captured at various points along the Oregon Trail
9. Your "Four Grain" bottling is made from corn, wild rice, amaranth and malted teocinte
8. You age your whiskey in barrels made from hickory
7. Every bottle is furnished with a small coonskin cap. At your Visitors Center, tourists can place the caps on their own bottles
6. Your favorite song is R. Dean Taylor's biggest hit
5. Your still is heated by a furnace that uses dried bison dung
4. You're not an immigrant from a Scandinavian country, or the child of one
3. You don't even know how to spell "Potemkin"
2. You're the only craft whiskey distiller in the USA not selling white dog

and the Number One Qualification for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

1. Despite numerous rebuffs (and several restraining orders) you're still trying to marry into the Boone family

Letterman would be proud! Over the top funny.

Parkersback
03-03-2011, 11:41
Top Ten Qualifications for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

10. You ferment your mash with wild yeasts captured at various points along the Oregon Trail
9. Your "Four Grain" bottling is made from corn, wild rice, amaranth and malted teocinte
8. You age your whiskey in barrels made from hickory
7. Every bottle is furnished with a small coonskin cap. At your Visitors Center, tourists can place the caps on their own bottles
6. Your favorite song is R. Dean Taylor's biggest hit
5. Your still is heated by a furnace that uses dried bison dung
4. You're not an immigrant from a Scandinavian country, or the child of one
3. You don't even know how to spell "Potemkin"
2. You're the only craft whiskey distiller in the USA not selling white dog

and the Number One Qualification for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

1. Despite numerous rebuffs (and several restraining orders) you're still trying to marry into the Boone family

Fine work, sir. :lol: I especially like #2.

CorvallisCracker
03-03-2011, 11:41
Or alternatively,

Woohoo. The End of History. Reminds me that one of these days I need to write "Goldilocks and the Three Beers". First though I gotta finish "Snow White and the Seven Master Distillers". It's about 30% done, and I was making progress, but got distracted.

Soon, hopefully.

Josh
03-03-2011, 11:49
Or alternatively,

How do you get the squirrel to stand still for that?

callmeox
03-03-2011, 12:15
4.5 stars

Was hoping for a Donner Party reference. :grin:

CorvallisCracker
03-03-2011, 12:21
How do you get the squirrel to stand still for that?

Pour some of the bottle's contents into it first (that stuff is 55% ABV).

DeanSheen
03-03-2011, 12:28
How do you get the squirrel to stand still for that?

Brewdog is responsible for that one.

http://www.brewdog.com/blog-article/341

CorvallisCracker
03-03-2011, 17:24
Oh darn, now I have to get serious. I hate that.

But it seems the following has become relevant. Never mind why.


Well you also got access to all the raw materials any Michelin restaurant uses, now go cook as good food as they are doing



I think your own analogy is a bit off. If I had access to the FINISHED PRODUCT that a Michelin restaurant uses, not the raw materials, I might be able to combine the finished product in new and exciting ways.


Mark makes a valid point. What HW has done with, say, Rendezvous, is combine only two other whiskies. By trying 80/20, 60/40, 50/50, 40/60 and 20/80 combinations one could quicky reproduce their results. Applying your analogy, this is more like serving Restaurant A's grilled lamb chops with Restaurant B's au gratin potatoes.



...and until then stfu




Also, exhorting people who you disagree with to 'stfu' is hardly a winning tactic in a debate on an open forum...

Yep. What he said.

And as long as you're making it personal, no, I probably couldn't take the same materials as a Michelin restaurant and achieve the same results, but my wife could. :grin: :yum:


Sorry for the harsh words.

Don't say it if you don't mean it.


...it's too hard to discuss matters with people if you don't share some kind of basic foundations

You mean like our ability to spot an invalid analogy?

I note that you haven't posted since the day you posted these. I also note you've visited since, so I'm going to assume you'll see this. Here in the USA we have an expression, "He took his ball and went home." This is what you're doing.

Seriously, Steffan, it's not a way to gain friends or credibility, any more than is name-calling ("sheep") or uncivil directives. Do try to do better in the future.

cigarnv
03-04-2011, 07:40
Top Ten Qualifications for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

10. You ferment your mash with wild yeasts captured at various points along the Oregon Trail
9. Your "Four Grain" bottling is made from corn, wild rice, amaranth and malted teocinte
8. You age your whiskey in barrels made from hickory
7. Every bottle is furnished with a small coonskin cap. At your Visitors Center, tourists can place the caps on their own bottles
6. Your favorite song is R. Dean Taylor's biggest hit
5. Your still is heated by a furnace that uses dried bison dung
4. You're not an immigrant from a Scandinavian country, or the child of one
3. You don't even know how to spell "Potemkin"
2. You're the only craft whiskey distiller in the USA not selling white dog

and the Number One Qualification for being a True Whiskey Pioneer

1. Despite numerous rebuffs (and several restraining orders) you're still trying to marry into the Boone family

Scott, this is way too funny!!!!

miller542
11-03-2011, 13:35
sorry to revive an old thread here, but this is the most recent discussion about the High West Distillery.

I just found out some new info. Where are the barrel houses? is a question I've been asking since the beginning. Apparently, they are in Salt Lake City. They've been aging their own product there since the beginning and are about to release their own aged whiskey. No details at this point, this is just an "official rumor" at this point. I'm sure there will be a big press release once the new product is officially announced.

And for the record, I also don't think blending two whiskeys makes them a pioneer. Some of the other obstacles they've faced here in Utah probably makes the pioneer claim a little better than the blender tag. If you're ever in Park City, you have to take the tour of the place.

jmpyle
11-15-2011, 20:54
Miller542, they have been aging their own whiskeys since the start. David Perkins said he'll release it when he feels it's ready. As of this past April he said the aged stuff was good but he wanted to give it some more time.

They have also just released a new "white" whiskey, a Rye called OMG Pure Rye. If you like white dogs, it's a beast of a rye with loads of spice, rye grain character, and big fruit as well. It should age very well, and they'll be doing so as well as doing some other pretty cool things with it.

JohnHansell
11-16-2011, 06:30
This is directly from David Perkins:

"Its our first aged whiskey. Its our oat whiskey aged in second fill rye whiskey barrels. We are releasing a barrel at 1.5 years this repeal day, just for fun. We are calling it Valley Tan, after the whiskey that the Mormons made. Its very unusual and good (not great yet! needs another couple years). "

p_elliott
11-17-2011, 08:26
This is directly from David Perkins:

"Its our first aged whiskey. Its our oat whiskey aged in second fill rye whiskey barrels. We are releasing a barrel at 1.5 years this repeal day, just for fun. We are calling it Valley Tan, after the whiskey that the Mormons made. Its very unusual and good (not great yet! needs another couple years). "


Thanks for the info John, I think I will be taking a pass on this one.

miller542
11-17-2011, 10:33
This is directly from David Perkins:

"Its our first aged whiskey. Its our oat whiskey aged in second fill rye whiskey barrels. We are releasing a barrel at 1.5 years this repeal day, just for fun. We are calling it Valley Tan, after the whiskey that the Mormons made. Its very unusual and good (not great yet! needs another couple years). "


thanks indeed. Not sure how much I'll seek out something thats been aged 1.5yrs in used oak, but it is something. I'm still looking forward for the release of something 4yrs or older from High West. Like many of the big boys, they are doing lots of experimental batches. If you take the tour, you'll notice they have many other distillers experimental bottles on hand too.

Repeal day, for those like me that don't already have it on your calendar, is December 5th.

keith18
12-02-2011, 19:31
Just wanted to pass along this story from tonight:

High West did a tasting at my local liquor store. They had their double rye, their white whiskey, their Manhattan mix, and then a 21 year old rye they were selling for $149 or so. I tried the 21 year old and it was good, but knowing that they didn't actually make it made it less, well, impressive.

The guy repping it was cool...a couple guys stood around and had several pours of the good stuff. He was certainly passing it out and seemed to know his stuff.

Anyway, no point really, just glad I knew that the 21 year stuff wasn't actually theirs--gave me some good perspective.

Oh and I didn't buy anything.

sailor22
12-03-2011, 06:09
Or you could have read the label on the 21 where it clearly states HW didn't make it. Sorry "that info" diminished the taste in your glass.

Did you try the new Son of Bourye? Thought that was mighty tasty too, and at a decent price point.

keith18
12-03-2011, 15:06
The tasting guy didn't have the bourye. I would have loved to have a taste of that.

It didn't diminish the taste, just makes the product less impressive knowing they didn't make it. Maybe that's a distinction without a difference.

SMOWK
12-03-2011, 15:19
Oh and I didn't buy anything.


It didn't diminish the taste, just makes the product less impressive knowing they didn't make it. Maybe that's a distinction without a difference.

Would you buy it if you rated it higher than your favorite whiskey in a blind taste test?

I think there's a point at which "who the hell cares where it comes from, that's some good hooch" comes into play.

Josh
12-03-2011, 20:05
Keith has a right to find a whiskey "less than impressive" for whatever reason he wants, doesn't he?

AaronWF
12-03-2011, 20:12
It didn't diminish the taste, just makes the product less impressive knowing they didn't make it. Maybe that's a distinction without a difference.


I think there's a point at which "who the hell cares where it comes from, that's some good hooch" comes into play.

I take Keith to mean that any fact that could possibly distract him from having to the gall to plop down $149 for one of the most delicious whiskeys he's every drunk is a fact worth dwelling upon.

That 21 year-old rye is like glittering gold in a bottle. I myself have been tempted to spring for it numerous times (I find it around here for $120-$130), but I have found the strength to resist.

ErichPryde
12-06-2011, 20:27
Would you buy it if you rated it higher than your favorite whiskey in a blind taste test?

I think there's a point at which "who the hell cares where it comes from, that's some good hooch" comes into play.


Sky, I continue to appreciate your wisdom.


Keith has a right to find a whiskey "less than impressive" for whatever reason he wants, doesn't he?

Sure... but it all goes back to the van winkle thing. Who here dislikes VWFRR because Julian and Preston didn't distill it themselves? BT didn't distill Saz 18. Black Maple Hill... &c. :( I'm sad to see this thread still alive and kicking.


I take Keith to mean that any fact that could possibly distract him from having to the gall to plop down $149 for one of the most delicious whiskeys he's every drunk is a fact worth dwelling upon.

That 21 year-old rye is like glittering gold in a bottle. I myself have been tempted to spring for it numerous times (I find it around here for $120-$130), but I have found the strength to resist.


149 for a 21 year old whiskey is actually not a bad deal at all, unfortunately. I think HW's 18 is much better than the 21- but it's all opinion. Perkins can rectify some damn good whiskey though.