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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Bay Area, CA

    Dave Pickerell Leaves Makers Mark

    Sorry if this is a repost - but I didn't see it anywhere on the board...

    Word is out that Dave Pickerell has left Makers Mark after 14 years of employment..

    Makes me sad, I am headed out to KY next month, and had a lunch planned with both Bill Samuels and Mr. Pickerell, through Fortune Brands. I am defintiely still greatful that I will be in the presence of Bill Samuels, but I was looking forward to meeting Dave as well. Oh well, best of luck to him!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Indianapolis, IN

    Unhappy Re: Dave Pickerell Leaves Makers Mark

    He is leaving MM. Do not know where he is going or will be doing or even if he is staying within the bourbon industry. Kevin Smith is taking over.

    "All I want to know is who's the player on second base?"

  3. #3
    Bourbonian of the Year 2010 and Guru
    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Re: Dave Pickerell Leaves Makers Mark

    That's too bad, he has been a wonderful Ambassador for them, always a gracious host and well spoken on camera.

    With any luck he will continue to be a strong force in the industry.

    I'll begin the wild speculation and wonder if there's any chance he might end up in Owensboro working with Medley and the new owners there. I like the sound of it anyway.
    2010 Bourbonian of the Year

    As long as you have good whiskey you're not "unemployed", you're "Funemployed!!!"

    I'm no Pappyophile

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Re: Dave Pickerell Leaves Makers Mark

    Louisville, CJ 4-16-08

    Maker's Mark bourbon announced yesterday that master distiller David Pickerell has left after 14 years and will be succeeded by Kevin Smith.
    "We are grateful for Dave's many contributions to Maker's Mark and wish him all the best," Bill Samuels Jr., president of the distillery in Loretto, Ky., said in a statement. "Kevin's appointment underscores the commitment ... to make the world's finest bourbon, without compromise and without compare."
    The company said Pickerell left to pursue other interests. Smith joined Maker's in 1998 as master distiller in training.


    I'm glad I purchased distillers bottled signed by Dave on Saturday, they only had a few left!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    Re: Dave Pickerell Leaves Makers Mark

    Met Dave at the Maker's Mark Ambassador party at the KBF last year. Only got to talk with him for a few minutes, but he seemed like a really good guy. Hope his replacement is as good. Joe
    Attached Images Attached Images
    " I never met a Weller I didn't like"

  6. #6
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999

    Re: Dave Pickerell Leaves Makers Mark

    I don't knpw anything that hasn't been in the public press, but Dave is a restless, ambitious and very talented guy, and I suspect he had done all he could do at MM and, for better or worse, Beam probably didn't try too hard to retain his services. I have no doubt he will re-appear soon.

    On an only slightly related note Steve Nally, who ran the stills at Maker's Mark for many years, although I'm not sure he was ever titled Master Distiller, and his wife, Donna, who used to run the whole tourism operation there, both retired from MM and have moved to Wyoming where they are involved in the construction of a small bourbon distillery there. This will be the first of the new small distilleries to use a real bourbon set-up--a column still and doubler--and be intended to make primarily bourbon. (All of the others use hybrid stills and make malt whiskey from wash.) How small? The column still is 18" in diameter (the typical ones are 48" and up) and the distillery will produce three to five barrels a day.

    Steve tells me he intends to make a wheater. "It's what I know," he says.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Eastern Pennsylvania

    Re: Dave Pickerell Leaves Makers Mark

    Quote Originally Posted by cowdery View Post
    Steve tells me he intends to make a wheater. "It's what I know," he says.
    I hope he models it on the old Makers Mark 101 from back in the day. Good stuff.
    Colonel Joseph B. "Bourbon Joe" Koch

    "Bourbon.....It's cheaper than therapy!!"



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