View Full Version : Message from Mark Brown

09-05-2007, 10:56
Listed below is an email message from Mark Brown I recently received.


Hello to old friends and new,

Time flies! It's hard to believe, but it has been nearly 12 months since we last wrote!

We hope you have been enjoying the summer, it has been hot, hot, hot in Kentucky and the whiskey has been aging a pace! (also evaporating faster :( )!

It has been a busy time for us at the Trace. Happily, all positive. We have lots to tell you about:

- Our newly completed micro distillery

- A new and 4th bottling operation in a building known as "Area 52"

- Warehouse "D" is fully renovated and the crossing gates are operative

- Fall release of our Antique Collection

- Latest issue of the Experimental Collection

- Latest awards

- Community Events

- Elmer T. Lee DVD

In order to be e-mail considerate, we have pasted a photo collage of manageable size and attached the photo collage for those e-mail accounts that prohibit embedded photos.

Micro Distillery

In order to keep marching steadily forward in our quest to make the best whiskey ever made and to expand our vodka distilling expertise, we have just completed installation of a "micro distillery" at the Trace. The still has been installed in the "Yeast" room and is along the route of our "Hard Hat" tour. It measures 16 feet tall and 5 feet wide, and is likely to produce just 10 gallons per batch. In the photo collage is a shot of one of the grains that we have been working with (and no, it is not an illegal plant :-), let's us know if you can guess! To date, we have laid away 62 special barrels distilled from this wonderful grain. We are also pleased to announce that the new still will allow us to start our "Custom Distillation" program. Have you ever thought about having us distill your very own barrel of whiskey, to your own specifications? If we have peaked your interest, just let us know by return e-mail.

Area 52

Humorously named after its much more famous cousin in Nevada (+1) and because it too works on secret projects at the Trace, we have recently completed work on a new bottling operation to cope with the growing popularity of our premium and super premium bourbons. In the photo collage, we have only been able to provide an aerial shot. To steal a look inside the building? Well, that will require a visit to Area 52 at the Trace, where perhaps one might vanish without a Trace!

Warehouse D

Warehouse D is now fully renovated, including a state of the art barrel hoist, and is rapidly being filled with barrels for use in 2015. The 1901 warehouse was built to hold around 19,000 barrels. In order to keep our visitors safe from being mown down by a 550lb barrel, we have installed railroad crossing gates complete with copper buffalo!

Antique Collection Release

In response to requests from our customers, we are letting you know of the release of our annual Antique Collection whiskeys - Eagle Rare 17 Years Old, George T. Stagg 15YO Barrel Proof, William Larue Weller 12YO Barrel Proof, Sazerac 18YO Rye, and Thomas Handy Barrel Proof Straight Rye. The release is scheduled to be in stores in the October / November time frame. If we can help you track down supplies, please just let us know by return e-mail. We will be happy to try and help out.

Experimental Collection Release

We are also happy to announce the release of our latest set of experiments.

ZINFANDEL AGED AFTER SIX YEARS: This whiskey was bourbon that was aged for six years and three months in a new oak barrel before it was re-barreled into a used American Oak Zinfandel barrel. There it was aged for another eight years, making it a total of 14 years old. The expected wine fruitiness is absent in the initial palette, but is replaced with an exciting spiciness. It is not the rye-grain spice normally associated with bourbon, but a grape-vine herbal quality that slides across the tongue and lingers for what seems like forever. This is an epic whiskey with grandeur and grace. Old world quaffing of a vine and field melange.

ZINFANDEL AGED AFTER TEN YEARS: This whiskey was bourbon aged for ten years and four months in a new oak barrel. Then it was then re-barreled in a used American Oak Zinfandel barrel for another 8 years. Aged a total of 18 years this whiskey carries little subtlety. The original whiskey brings powerful flavors to the refinement of the zinfandel wine barrel. The battle of flavor is won rather than shared by the bourbon. The zinfandel does dance along the edges with its dry herbal flavorings, but the bourbon fills the ballroom with its grain and wood bouquet.

If we can help you track down supplies, please just let us know by return e-mail. We will be happy to try and help out.

Latest Awards

We continue to be blessed with awards for our whiskeys including "Distiller of the Year" 2007 from Whisky magazine. On the heels of our 3 "Distiller(y) of the Year awards in 2006, we have been just thrilled. In addition our whiskies did quite well this year earning the following honors at the San Francisco World spirits competition:

· Top North American Whiskey, Double Gold Medal, Sazerac Straight Rye Whiskey

· Double Gold Medal, Eagle Rare Single Barrel Bourbon

· Double Gold Medal, Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Straight Rye Whiskey

· Double Gold Medal, Van Winkle Family Reserve 20 Year-Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

· Double Gold Medal, Van Winkle Family Reserve 23 Year-Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon

· Double Gold Medal, George T. Stagg Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

· Gold Medal, Buffalo Trace Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

· Gold Medal,Blanton's Single Barrel Bourbon

Community Events

Since we last wrote we have had great fun with our two big, early year community events - Easter Egg Hunt and our July 4th 5K race, which nearly 300 runners participated in! Next up will be our annual barrel rolling competiton against Jim Beam, Halloween and Christmas.

Elmer T. Lee - DVD

Our Master Distiller Emeritus, Elmer T. Lee, who we are delighted to report just celebrated his 88th birthday, shares his whiskey making knowledge with us on DVD. The DVD is broken into 3 to 4 minute segments, each covering part of the entire process for making great whiskey. We will be happy to mail a complimentary copy of the DVD to you, please just reply to this e-mail, letting us have a mailing address. We are not sure how many folks will write back, so please bear with us if takes a while to mail the DVD.

If you would ever like to write to Elmer, he would be delighted to hear from you and can be reached at: elee@buffalotrace.com

In closing and on behalf of the 250 folks at the Trace, thank you for your support, it makes it all worthwhile.

Until the next time, we'll be having fun making great whiskey!

Have a great Labor Day weekend.



Mark Brown

President / CEO

The Buffalo Trace Distillery

Direct: (502) 696-5978

Cell: (502) 320-6807

E-Mail: MBrown@BuffaloTrace.com



09-05-2007, 11:12
By the way, my guess for the mystery grain they are fermenting is amaranth....a psuedo-grain not seen often but is popular in Mexico. There are many varieties and some are used in landscaping as ornamentals, etc. I even recall a "cajun" variety of amaranth.


09-05-2007, 12:09
Thanks for the letter Randy. Looks like those fellas been busy. The old yeast room is huge, it used to supply 5-7 distilleries in the area. Quite a still and did they say something about bourbon my way??? Buffalo Trace with a Wendy's attitude. Hard to imagine.

09-05-2007, 12:49
I wonder what they will do with the Dickel room.
When I was down at the former OFC I saw the area where George Dickel was made during the Tenneesee prohabition that was prior to the national ban.

09-05-2007, 13:16
As a follow up to Doubleblank, I thought it was
Amaranth too, or its close relative, Quinoa.


09-06-2007, 17:31
As a follow up to Doubleblank, I thought it was
Amaranth too, or its close relative, Quinoa.


Nah, you are both wrong, it is Dandylion. I hear it grows like a weed around there. :cool:

09-07-2007, 09:27
Received confirmation that the mystery grain is Amaranth.
Good Call Randy.

09-12-2007, 19:42
Received confirmation that the mystery grain is Amaranth.
Good Call Randy.

I was kinda hoping it would be oats, which used to be part of the grain bill of some traditional Irish pot still whiskey.

Thanks for forwarding this email, Randy.

Jeff (way too absent from here lately, but enjoying sipping on the #1 22 yo Willett rye.)