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View Full Version : When the Master Distiller Has a Cold . . .



bluesbassdad
01-05-2006, 11:55
As I enter what seems like the 97th day of my second or third two-week cold of the season, my normally cheery ( http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif ) mood is about as nasty it gets. It's not that the experience is even close to being unbearable; I'm just starting to wonder whether it will ever end.

In addition to the usual symptoms, I find that I am unable to enjoy alcoholic beverages in any form (unless Robitussin DM counts). My long road to recovery has caused me to wonder what would happen, were a master distiller to be so afflicted. If his taste apparatus was out of whack for, say, two to four weeks, would barrel selection and/or dumping cease for that period of time?

The schedule impact might be even worse than that. I know that even after I pronounce myself recovered from a prolonged cold, it takes my taste a few more weeks to return to normal.

Is it possible that the common cold could interefere with production of bourbon? Or does each distillery actually have a panel of tasters-in-training who would step in during an emergency? Or is there a several month supply of pre-tasted barrels to preclude just such an emergency?

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

Brennan77
01-05-2006, 13:42
Interesting question. I've got a scratchy throat right now. Last night I tried a pour of this new bottle of Weller Centennial 10yo but I just could not get into it. It wasn't bad, but I couldn't taste anything distinctive. My taste was really out of whack.

NorCalBoozer
01-05-2006, 14:26
maybe they have a few junior distillers that are learning under the Master and if the MD is sick then they take over???

cowdery
01-05-2006, 14:47
Every distillery has a tasting panel. These are not "junior" tasters, but people who regularly participate in the quality control process. If the master distiller's tasting ability is impaired, there are always others who can step in.

Sweetmeats
01-05-2006, 15:25
You need to save a bottle of the stuff you're not too keen on to drink during the times your sick. Robitussin DM and just about any whiskey should knock out a cold in a couple days. That or give you some cool hallucinations. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

JeffRenner
01-05-2006, 16:01
Interesting question. I've got a scratchy throat right now. Last night I tried a pour of this new bottle of Weller Centennial 10yo but I just could not get into it. It wasn't bad, but I couldn't taste anything distinctive. My taste was really out of whack.



That's how I quit smoking (a pipe) 25 years ago. I was pretty well disgusted with the stinking habit, although I certainly enjoyed it, but I had a cold that lasted two weeks and couldn't tolerate a smoke. So I quit, and had longings only a few months.

I approached pipe tobacco in the same way I tackle all my interests - fanatically. I'd smoked a pipe for more than ten years, and really got into it. Blended my own tobacco ( I wonder if there are any shops left with such a selection of tobaccos as back in the 70's), got the best straight-grain briars and meerschaums, picked up a wonderful, buttery-soft baccy pouch in Florence (Italy, not Kentucky! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif ). Then happily gave it up. No more holes in shirts and jackets (back when I wore tweed sports coats), no more burnt tongue, no more off-putting breath. (Cigar smokers (which I was one of) - sound familiar?)

Let's just hope that you and Dave get over your colds without giving up bourbon!

Here's to both of your health (written while sipping a lovely manhattan made with an old Bourbon Deluxe).

Jeff

1holegrouper
01-06-2006, 07:03
maybe they have a few junior distillers that are learning under the Master and if the MD is sick then they take over???



This is what I thought as well. It makes sense. Also, I would suspect that the tasting sense of a MD, since tasting is mostly what they do for a living, is much more sharper than the average person. So, when a cold comes on the MD may hold out longer in his ability to detect bourbon quality??

boone
01-06-2006, 07:46
There's a group of folks in the lab that "taste" the product http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Many of ya met a couple of them and didn't know who they were. During the KBF, two of our tour guides were part of QC at Heaven Hill, Mike Sonne and Tawnie Wiseman http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif Mike, will tell you that Tawnie is the best taster http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif hands down http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Bettye Jo

bluesbassdad
01-06-2006, 09:54
Bettye Jo,

In my original post I almost used the "he/she" construction, just as a courtesy. Little did I know that a woman is already performing this essential part of what I've always regarded as the master distiller's function.

I guess that except for heavy lifting there's not much you gals can't do at least as well as the guys. (Come to think of it, rolling barrels of bourbon might just qualify as "heavy lifting". http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif )

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

boone
01-06-2006, 10:17
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh Yeahhhhhhhhhhhhh http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif Dave http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

as Jobettye prissies off into the sunset swinging' the hips (tool belt http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif a clinging' http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif) from side to side...Bottle of bourbon in one hand, ratchet in the other http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif...

I just love it when new folks come to visit us...and they spot me, inside a machine fixing it http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif There's always a double take...

Things are alot different now...and I love being in the middle of it! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Bettye Jo

HH Maintenance, since Jan 15, 2001 http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
HH Employee since August 17, 1992 http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

cowdery
01-07-2006, 13:48
In addition to Heaven Hill, I know both Woodford Reserve and Jack Daniel's have women on their tasting panels. In Daniel's case, she is a great niece of his. The head of quality control at Glenmorangie is a woman.

1holegrouper
01-09-2006, 05:09
In addition to Heaven Hill, I know both Woodford Reserve and Jack Daniel's have women on their tasting panels. In Daniel's case, she is a great niece of his. The head of quality control at Glenmorangie is a woman.



I'm not surprised. As us married men know full well. Women are smarter than us, better looking than us, live longer, get sick less... It's a forgone conclusion that they would be better tasters as well.

gr8erdane
01-09-2006, 22:06
And they tend to look over our shoulders when we are posting notes as well. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smilielol.gif

ProofPositive
01-09-2006, 22:36
And they tend to look over our shoulders when we are posting notes as well. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smilielol.gif



Though this has nothing to do with the master distiller having a cold, I must digress a moment on the subject of women - at the risk of opening a new thread and a can of worms http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif. I am still fairly new at this but it has begun to catch the attention of my better half http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/bigeyes.gif.
She thinks I am sending secret notes to another woman. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smilielol.gif

Edward_call_me_Ed
01-10-2006, 06:27
As I understand it, women, as a group, have a more sensitive sense of smell than men, as a group. And smell is most of taste.

I knew a professional beer taster who worked in a brewery. She said that she had to work, cold or no cold. She was also part of a team so as long as the whole team didn't come down with a cold I guess they were okay.
Ed

pepcycle
01-13-2006, 13:59
You might be sending messages to women.
One never really knows in the virtual world.