A correspondent from the Netherlands wrote me about a statement I made in an article, that "straight whiskey is the product of one distillation at one distillery and is fully aged." He had read in an article that Four Roses is "a blend of 11 different bourbons" and that "straight whiskey means that there aren't any non-bourbons or neutral grain spirits." He noted that one of us must be wrong. I confessed that it is me. Today the rule is "'Straight whisky' includes mixtures of straight whiskies of the same type produced in the same State." That is taken right from the ATF regs. What I don't know is: when did that change? Or did it? I know the requirement for "bottled in bond" is that "the whiskey must be produced in the same distilling season by the same distiller at the same distillery." That too is verbatim from the regs. Maybe that was always the rule for "bond" but never for "straight" and I had the two confused. Does anybody know?

--Chuck Cowdery