461 – A Famous Name In Bourbon Takes on Rum with Turner Wathen of Rolling Fork

We’ve had the very cool opportunity to have lots of famous names on this show, and today we get to hear the story of another brand that has been in bourbon for a very long time. In fact, in this episode you get a chance to hear from someone who’s family once owned the Old Grandad label. Turner Wathen has a deep family lineage rooted in bourbon, and that originally piqued my interest because I used to own a bottle of Wathen’s bourbon. Turner dives deep into his family history and how when he wanted to get into the whiskey business, he couldn’t even use his family name. Turner shares his wild decision in 2014 by analyzing the whiskey market and feeling there is too much saturation so he dove into rum. But not just any rum, but he set himself on a mission to become the upmost recognizable independent bottler of amazing, high age stated rum, that is now Rolling Fork Spirits

Show Notes:

  • Above the Char with Fred Minnick (@fredminnick) talks about NDPs and bottled in bond.
  • Can you give a background into how you found out your name was famous in bourbon?
  • At what point did you decide to revive the family legacy?
  • Are you still balancing your day job with all this?
  • When did you decide that bourbon was crowded and looked at other spirits?
  • Why is sorghum a bad grain to use?
  • How important is it to find rum with no additives and why is that important?
  • Was Fortuitous Union a mistake or the on purpose?
  • Why was there a legal battle for Fortuitous Union?
  • How much of an educational hurdle did you have to overcome?
  • When did you switch from the Fortuitous Union brand back to a rum focus?
  • Any reason why you haven’t worked with any American rum producers?
  • What is going on with all the rum taxes?
  • Are we looking at the rare days of rum that would be equivalent to Van Winkle or early Jeffersons?
  • Support this podcast on Patreon

2 thoughts on “461 – A Famous Name In Bourbon Takes on Rum with Turner Wathen of Rolling Fork

  1. Fred mentioned Brian ??harrs?? Book? Not sure the name or the book. Can you help me out?

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