Having counsulted in small distilleries around the country, water makeup for mahing in whiskey production does effect the flavour of the product. Same mashbill, yeast and still, different water, different taste and smell. Yeast do make a difference. Most of the distilleries still use old strains. Even distilleries that bring in dry yeast are using older strains. For instance, red star's whiskey yeast is an old strain Schenley used.
Thanks for that info on the Red Star/Schenley connection.
Boils down to it ALL makes a difference everywhere down the line ;-)
Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most