View Full Version : Master Distillers

10-24-2003, 16:04
There are probably not too many that have had the opportunity to sit down and have a one-on-one talk with the Master Distillers as I have. I am very fortunate to have had this privlidge. I have talked for hours on end with Jimmy Russell of WT, William Friel of Barton, and Elmer T. Lee of Buffalo Trace. Talking to these men lets one know there is a whole lot more about bourbon than you realize. For instance, I asked Jimmy Russell where the chocolate comes from and he told me from the barrel, but it is more than that, which I will get into later. Probably the most in-depth discussion came between me and Bill Friel of VOB. This man's knowledge is remarkable. I have learned more from him than anyone else, as Bill happens to be a close friend of mine. I have introduced him to others in hopes that bourbon can be better understood and with straightbourbon.com created by Jim Butler there is no doubt that the message will get across. There is so much I would like to say, but it is unnecessary, as all you have to do is look through all the tasting notes that appear on straightbourbon.com than you will realize - that bourbon is without a doubt the best drink on earth. It is the only one that I know of that you can drink, cook, talk about, tell folklore about and enjoy. I thank you, Bill Friel, Jimmy Russell, Elmer T. Lee and Greg Davis for giving me the time to share your knowledge with all.

And by the way, the chocolate comes from the barrel, but only special barrels that has the oldest and slowest growing oak and when the barrels are charred there is an excess of the amount of carmel that comes out. When this happens, you get the chocolate.

Enjoy the next bourbon you are having. It's a master's gift to bourbon lovers. The next drink I am having is to all http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif.


10-24-2003, 16:06
Thank you, Marvin. That was wonderful!


10-24-2003, 16:12
Here here! Later tonight I will have some Kentucky Spirit, and Look for some of that chocolate!


10-24-2003, 16:15
- that bourbon is without a doubt the best drink on earth.

That bout' sums it up. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif Great post, thanks Marvin!

10-24-2003, 17:01
Probably the most in-depth discussion came between me and Bill Friel of VOB

I had the pleasure of speaking with Bill for 10 minutes or so at the bourbon festival this year. He is a true gentleman and ready to answer anything you want to ask. It is amazing that these guys are so willing to talk to the "little people" like me. It really brings the bourbon family closer together. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

10-24-2003, 17:20
I hve to agree strongly with Jeff on this one. Mr. Friel was friendly, funny,amd ope to answer just about any question I had in the short time I got to speak with him. It really makes bourbon a more enjoyable thing to me that people arent afriad to share a little knowledge, instead of just releasing it from "upon high".


10-26-2003, 10:13

It is true that an oppourtunity to talk with the Master Distillers is a true treat. Talking with Elmer T Lee while at the distillery and again at WhiskyFest was really enjoyable. I think that he truly enjoys people as much as he enjoys Bourbon, because he makes great conversation and Bourbon. It was a true pleasure being introduced to Bill Friel while at the Gazebo by Marvin, and I don't even remember how long we talked, but it was for quite awhile. It was wonderful talking with him about the 1792 Ridgewood Reserve and the Barton brands in general, but we also just talked about regular "stuff". A true gentleman. I also got a kick out of later introducing Bill Friel to a number of members of our SB community. He mingled with all in such a casual way, which struck me as being such a positive thing.

I know that Craig and Parker Beam were at the Gazebo, but with all the activity that PM, I didn't get to talk with them. But, at WhiskyFest, I was able to talk with Parker Beam for awhile. Another fine gentleman! He knows that many here already think very highly of the new EWSB, and that many more of us are eagerly awaiting its release.


10-27-2003, 12:30
Every Master Distiller I've talked with has been very nice and glad to answer questions. I can't help but think this is in part due to the fact that they are basically Kentucky gentlemen. -- Greg

10-27-2003, 15:25
They're also practical, down to earth people who recognize that being a spokesperson is a lot easier than having to work for a living, and they appreciate it.