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  1. #111
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Well this thread took a swift turn into Chuck bashing. I don't know that Chuck has been unfair to micros, or played any favorites with the big boys. But even if that's your opinion, isn't it unfair to assume its because of some pecuniary interest or resulting from some type of cronyism?

    I don't know Chuck, but even if I initially perceived uneveness in reporting (which I really don't), upon further reflection, and prior to posting something on a message board, I would conclude that it boils down to this: trust.

    Trust is earned. An upstart micro has no trust to begin with, unless its someone with a reputation and history in the industry. An upstart micro that starts out with half-truths and evasiveness has substantially hindered the chance of developing trust.

    A big boy, say BT or Jim Beam, has built up a level of trust through the years. Like any relationship there are breaches here and there, but usually the trust earned through the years warrants the benefit of the doubt.

    Those big boys have been in the industry, with Chuck, for a long time-some level of trust has developed. It's the same with me - if a Joe Schmo Micro tells me he made a bourbon that is the best he's tasted, I'll take it with a monster grain of salt. If the BT master distiller tells me he made a bourbon that is the best, I'm lining up at the door. He's earned my trust through past products.

    Again, I don't know Chuck at all, but from a purely writer-reader relationship, he's certainly earned my trust, and I have no reason to believe any uneveness in reporting some of you perceive is anything more than those whom earned his trust v. those whom have not.

  2. #112
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Quote Originally Posted by White Dog View Post
    Hello? Have you not read my Rye question, which was not addressed in the Cowdery piece? Actually, Rye was addressed, but Wheatley's comments on the Rye being BT-make were not addressed. That's all I'm looking for.
    Well, I look at it this way. The Van Winkles have said, many times, on the record, that the rye is still the CoK/Medley vatting from the tank, and they confirmed it again in this interview. So I guess that means that Wheatley was wrong.
    Life's too short, and there's too much good whiskey within reach.

  3. #113
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    There are many good reasons why hearsay evidence is generally not admissible in court. The main one is that it is unreliable. If I began a conversation with Harlen with, "so-and-so says you said such-and-such at this event on this date" he'd laugh at me and he'd be right. I've said before that I respect the people who made that report, but there's nothing to be gained by trying to dissect it and reconcile it with other things that other people have said at other times. I haven't talked to Harlen directly about this but I know him well enough to know his reaction. He'd sniff, shrug his shoulders, and maybe roll his eyes, or chuckle. This happens all the time.

    So a couple of people want to puff themselves up by bashing me. I've had worse.

    I've never done any of this to call attention to myself, although some of that is inevitable. I don't make a lot of money from it. That's certainly not my motive. I just find this stuff interesting and I find marketing spin frustrating, so I try to get to the truth as best I can. I've been doing this for awhile and I watch other people. The shrill attention-seekers often get attention but they don't often come away with the truth. I treat people with respect and they generally do the same with me. The world just works better that way.

    I've had conflicts with people like David Perkins and Drew Kulsveen, but we usually work it out to the point where we can at least be civil with each other. In the cases of David and Drew, I'd say the relationship is friendly, if maybe a little guarded. That's how life is.

    Ultimately with publications or individual writers, all we have is our integrity and the reader's assessment of that. If you don't think I'm playing straight then you probably shouldn't waste your time reading me. If instead you dissect every word in order to shine a spotlight on yourself, well, that's about you, that's not about me.

    Let me give you an example. I like Tom Bulleit. He's a very nice man and good company. I think the whole Augustus Bulleit story is fiction. So do most other people who study the history side of things. There is zero supporting evidence for any of it. Tom always looks uncomfortable when you ask him about it but he has what is, in a way, a bullet-proof (pardon the expression) answer. It's what his father told him. At that point you just say, well, okay. I'll certainly never report any of the Augustus Bulleit stuff as fact, because I don't believe it, but that doesn't mean I have to go on a crusade about it. And, oh yeah, there's no evidence that Jack Daniel's was the first registered distillery and ample evidence to doubt that claim. I've reported that, many times, but am I a bad journalist if I don't have a screaming fit about it?
    Last edited by cowdery; 06-18-2012 at 10:21.

  4. #114
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Can this be over now?

    I now officially wish that Winston and I had never reported on what HW said here and simply kept it to ourselves as a point of interest among our little group of whiskey lovers/fanatics.

    It went from "wow, this is really interesting" to "whacko conspiracy theories" (I'm eagerly awaiting the movie...).

    It's not unicorn pee...

    You mean "production" disagrees with "marketing" with regard to the end product? Oh.my.God. Stop the presses! THEY probably don't even know who is right/wrong and no amount of "journalistic sleuthing" is going to get the answer - the parties involved can't actually provide a straight answer to a lot of these questions because the don't actually know the answers themselves (Julian & Preston have admitted to not knowing 100% what's in all their bottles)! I'm guessing at this point that HW was either wrong about OWA going away, was terribly premature, or it was a "thought bubble" floated to unsuspecting mooks like me & Winston to see what the reaction would be - or all of the above.

    Is HW a more "credible" source than the VW's? Heck if I know - I've only met each of them a couple of times. I thought Julian was hella more fun to hang out with than HW... but HW seemed like more of a straight-shooter and had more of a business-like approach, Julian just wanted to talk about whiskey and mash bills and such...

    I don't believe either of them are dumb enough to risk outright lies to people in the whiskey fan/hobbiest community much less writers with blogs and retail outlets. So... realize, if they were wrong, they either (a) have an agenda or (b) far more, likely were just mis/uninformed

    Thanks.

  5. #115
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Quote Originally Posted by timd View Post
    It's not unicorn pee...
    Or is it? Hmm. The mystery continues...
    "I distrust a man who says 'when.' He's got to be careful not to drink too much, because he's not to be trusted when he does." Sydney Greenstreet

  6. #116
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Quote Originally Posted by cowdery View Post
    Personally, Iím a Lot B guy and it has continued to be great and, to my taste, virtually unchanged since the SW went out of the mix, so I think the future is bright for the line. The drinking of the last SW, when that day comes, will be notable but not tragic.
    I couldn't agree more. The master distillers blend barrels until the desired flavor profile is met - and this holds true whether what went into the barrel came from BT or SW. I'm not insinuating that the distillates are indifferent - only that the end product will be extremely comparable if not indistinguishable.

    Just my thoughts

  7. #117
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Quote Originally Posted by timd View Post

    It's not unicorn pee...
    Unicorn pee tasted a lot better back in the day.
    .
    .
    Rye whiskey makes the sun set faster.

  8. #118
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Quote Originally Posted by soad View Post
    Unicorn pee tasted a lot better back in the day.
    Yeah, when it comes to unicorn urine, I really only like the old stuff.

    But the poop, regardless of age, always tastes like skittles...

  9. #119
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    Thanks, Tim, for the words of wisdom. Well said. I would only add that this hobby is supposed to be fun. When it stops being fun, check yourself, because you're doing it wrong.

  10. #120
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    Re: All your Van Winkle questions answered

    I don't think there's a posting member on here that doesn't gain immense joy and fun from Bourbon/Rye. (And I gain immense joy and fun from hearing the various viewpoints.)

    But maybe there's a difference between casual and serious enjoyment?

 

 

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