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  1. #1
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    Craft Distilleries

    The current issue of The Bourbon Country Reader, spotlights craft distilleries. Mr. Cowdery points out some differences in operations and ingrediants of todays modern distilleries and the new craft distilleries. From grain milling to yeast production, you will be suprised to find out who the traditionalist is.

    Come on, brown sugar intead of molasses?

  2. #2
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    Re: Craft Distilleries

    This was my first issue of the The Bourbon Country Reader and I found the article to be fantastic. It made me think of this thread:

    http://www.straightbourbon.com/forum...read.php?t=101

    The thing I keep coming back to however, is the title itself. Is their a point to the craft distillers? It seems like the craft distillers face two non-sustainable options:
    1. Make something so unique that people will want to buy it to try it. In other words, stand out from the crowd. But doesn't this just usually give the product an aura of novelty which won't support long term sales?

    2. Make a good tasting product that people will want to buy over and over. But how could the craft distillers top the big dogs that have hundreds of years of experience in making good tasting whiskey?
    What are the chances they could turn one of their novelty whiskeys into something you would want everyday? For example, from the posts I have read on here, while most of you guys like Bernheim Wheat Whiskey, it still seems like it is a novelty to you.

    Buffalo Trace also seems to take this stance and so far has only released their experimental collection in very small batches which is in line with what a novelty item can support. In reality however, while I applaud Buffalo Trace for the experimental collections, this makes it even harder for the craft distillers to pick option #1 although option #2 is probably still far harder!

    Thoughts?

  3. #3
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Re: Craft Distilleries

    I don't know that they necessarily have to do things that have never been done before. I think the opportunity and challenge is to make a whiskey, probably from traditional ingredients, that is enjoyable to drink at a young age. The only way they can "beat" the majors is by doing genuinely small batches of very carefully made, hand-crafted whiskey. That's a business the majors will never be in.

    Also, they need to learn from the small wineries and cater to tourism. Tell a good story, put on a good show, and you'll get most of your sales from the gift shop.

  4. #4
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    Re: Craft Distilleries

    Quote Originally Posted by cowdery View Post
    I think the opportunity and challenge is to make a whiskey, probably from traditional ingredients, that is enjoyable to drink at a young age. The only way they can "beat" the majors is by doing genuinely small batches of very carefully made, hand-crafted whiskey.
    Isn't this kind of what Fritz Maytag is doing? The only and fatal difference being that most don't find the whiskey "enjoyable to drink?" I guess maybe a better example is the Hudson Baby Bourbon which I look forward to trying one day.

    In either case I wonder if there is a *sustainable* market (whether small or big) for carefully made young whiskeys.

  5. #5
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    Re: Craft Distilleries

    Quote Originally Posted by fussychicken View Post
    Isn't this kind of what Fritz Maytag is doing? The only and fatal difference being that most don't find the whiskey "enjoyable to drink?" I guess maybe a better example is the Hudson Baby Bourbon which I look forward to trying one day.

    In either case I wonder if there is a *sustainable* market (whether small or big) for carefully made young whiskeys.
    Count me among those who would love to try Hudson Baby Bourbon as well as their un-aged distillate.

    part of the problem with craft distilleries gaining a permanent foothold in the market is those of us who want and would buy such products (and I believe there are many of us) are spread far and wide. Speaking from personal experience I'm more likely to drink whats locally available than go through the trouble of ordering from on line merchants. Laziness on my part, I know. But I think a lot of people are like that.

 

 

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