113 – Rum Pursuit with Fred Minnick

Fred Minnick, multi-appearance guest on the show and author of the new book Rum Curious, educates us bourbon drinkers on why rum isn’t so bad and how the rum industry needs the passion of the bourbon community.

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  • Back in February you had a article named “For Rum’s Sake”, an open letter to bourbon drinkers. Was it a plea?
  • Why rum? There’s lots of other spirits
  • Name a few brands that are accessible in parts of the US that are trustworthy.
  • So what’s wrong with Captain Morgan and those typical ones we all think of?
  • We know bourbon has 3 main ingredients, but what are some of the main ones going into rum?
  • We also have corn whiskey, rye whiskey, etc, any variants?
  • So people want to learn more about rum, besides your book, where are the rum fanatics?
  • Talk about the laws and labels for rum producers
  • What do you think about those companies that say they can create an aged rum in less than 7 days using technology?
  • Thanks to Emmet Klocker that sent us some samples from Lemon Hart, Havana Club, and 1931/
112 – Beau Beckman, An update on private barrels at Buffalo Trace

Beau Beckman, Barrel Select Manager at Buffalo Trace, is now a 2nd time guest! We talk about how the program has matured, why you only get to taste 4 barrels rather than more, how the barrels are chosen for the program versus the regular blend, and how you can get your own.

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  • So what’s been happening since the last time we chatted back on episode 009?
  • You’ve managed to stay off the news radar it seems like except there was a good article Forbes put out recently and our good friend Bourbon Truth was talking about good private barrels and said you basically had to lick someone’s balls (especially Beau beckman) to get anywhere
  • So we just did a pick and you said you can have the barrel or we can send it off to Mexico
  • For anyone that doesn’t know and didn’t catch them up to speed on your family heritage that you bashfully don’t like to talk about
  • I was actually out here today doing a barrel selection of Buffalo Trace, talk me through the process of what I experienced today
  • The numbers have been dwindling at every place for barrel selections. Where it was once fruitful to try 12 or more barrels, sometimes it’s down to three. Is this just lack of mature whiskey?
    • or is it lets dwindle down these remaining barrels for single selections and then we will pull out new ones
  • How often does it happen someone will pass on a barrel and then the next group or the group after says something ridiculous like “oh man, that’s the honey barrel!”
  • speaking of honey barrels, do you really believe there are such a thing and how often do those go to single select?
  • how are the barrels chosen for single select, randomly? by a group of tasters?
  • I’ve had some very off profile barrels too
  • Coming and doing a barrel pick for new whiskey geeks is like the ultimate experience. What do you attribute to the success of a single barrel program?
  • Any advice for those stores who are itching to get on the program or know of a shortcut?
111 – Reid & Emerald of 1789b

Reid Bechtle & Emerald Adair of 1789b join the group to talk about the fascinations with the better things in life, how they started 1789b, how barrel selections have changed in 7 years, and the barrel picks they have still yet to do.

  • Introduce yourselves, your background and how bourbon got into your life
  • What are those coins you have in your hands?
  • Explain what 1789b is
  • Where does the name 1789b come from?
  • Do distilleries roll out the red carpet for you?
  • Have the advent of prolific Facebook groups influenced the group?
  • Talk about those early Reid & Emerald picks
  • How has the barrel selection process changed now that you don’t get the pick of everything in the rick house?
  • When newcomers are in the market and they see Billions with Michter’s 20 year and they get caught up in the chase. Do you all get caught up seeking limited releases too?
  • Is there a bourbon pick you haven’t done yet that would be on your bucket list?
  • Listen to the barrel pick we all did back on Episode 105
110 – BCR #11 Eclipse Curses, Old Forester Birthday, and Store Picks

The roundtable is back with a new panel member. Some of us got cursed by making fun of the eclipse while others are being cursed by the Old Forester vapor gods by stealing some extra alcohol for OFBB 2017. Show notes below…

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  • Thanks to Maxwell Christy of SuperflyBourbonClub, Blake from, Jordan from BreakingBourbon, and a brief appearance from Kerry of
  • Who watched the eclipse today? Anyone else underwhelmed?
  • OFBB is releasing their 2017 Birthday Bourbon
  • How about Old Forester Statesman? Has anyone tried it yet?
  • Why is it people are ok with higher prices on private label bourbons however it’s not like that in any other industry?
  • Quinn English asks “I’d like to hear more about distribution and alternatives for the three tier system”
  • Vlad Belchinsky asks “I would like to see a discussion about ‘store picks”, are they really and why does someone’s opinion of 1 barrel drive the price up over a standard release?”
  • Adam Kessell asks “Another topic is what you drink when you don’t drink bourbon. And it’s connection to bourbon. Or bourbon barrel aged tequila/rum, etc.”
109 – Retail Pricing Wars!

Retail Pricing Wars! Does MSRP really mean anything? How do stores price their products relative to their size, customer base, and geographic location? We’re joined by Ed Bley of Cork N Bottle and Angelo Ingrati of Peppino’s Liquors & Wine to discuss both sides of the story. Read Show Notes Below.

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  • What’s your reason on why your stores can sell above MSRP?
  • Why would any store NOT sell at secondary pricing?
  • How does geography play a role into this with Kentucky vs NYC?
  • Is Buffalo Trace or the distillery the real culprits of the problem?
  • Don’t most liquor stores make their money on volume rather than limited releases? So how do you keep your customers happy after this bubble bursts?
  • Small mom & pop shops are losing allocation and reps are favoring big box stores, do you see this as a problem on the distributer side?
  • Do store owners get tired of hearing “Do you have any X?”
  • What do you think is the effect of square footage of your retail space? What are their advantages?
  • How do you buy enough fireball to get any limited release bourbon?
  • Are everyday items priced higher in NYC like Maker’s Mark?
  • By raising the retail price, then do you feel like you are cutting out the distributor and the distillery of their fair share?


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