The 25th episode of the Bourbon & Banter podcast – Wind Beneath My Wings - is now available for your listening and drinking pleasure. No, we’re not channeling our inner Bette Midler. But we might be channeling some gas from all the bullshit we’ve consumed since our last episode. Take baked beans, sardines, sauerkraut, canned cheese spray, and kale (WITH BACON), blend it all in a smoothy, then…well you get the idea. Hence the title for this episode.
We start by recapping our recent barrel picking trip to Four Roses and Spirits of French Lick. Look for those barrels to hit this summer and fall respectively. The Bourbon & Banter Single Barrel Club also has dates for picks with Wyoming Whiskey, Maker’s Mark, and Knob Creek coming up, plus a Penelope blended pick that we’ll head to New Jersey for. Pops and crew in the Garden State? You can rest assured that no salads will be consumed on that trip. All this year’s single barrels will be more accessible to members too, as we’re thrilled to be able to ship nationwide now.
The Bourbon & Banter Slack Community continues to grow as a place for folks who are tired of all the bullshit you find in social media bourbon groups. No crotch shots here. Our community thread of the month looks at the Hard Seltzer Festival….yeah, you read that correctly…the Hard Seltzer Festival that’s touring the country and recently made a stop in Washington D.C. Whatever you think our thoughts are on this…you’re right.
A lot is happening in WHISKEY NEWS, including a new $135 million distillery being built in Bardstown by Heaven Hill. Those Mellow Corn Dogs of Bernie Lubbers must have driven a revenue spike the last year.
While we were on our recent barrel picking trip, Jim Beam announced that Freddie Noe has been named Master Distiller of the Fred B. Noe Distillery, where he’ll work alongside his father leading this effort with some of Beam’s most popular, super-premium whiskies such as Little Book and Bookers.
Angel’s Envy unveiled plans for a new $8.2 million expansion to their downtown Louisville distillery, which will add more than 13,000 square feet to the current building and increase annual guest capacity by 64,000.
Drizzy’s annual consumer trend report found that tequila is taking over, with adults surveyed putting it 7-percentage points ahead of American whiskey when asked about spirits they plan to purchase more of this year. Ready-to-drink cocktails also continue to thrive, much to Bob’s dismay, with more people reaching for them than making their cocktails at home. SLACKERS!
Matthew McConaughey is back with another campaign for Wild Turkey, but it’s not nearly as interesting as the story we have about the reality show he’s launching from the Camp Nelson warehouse location.
Louisville Slugger and Major League Baseball are partnering on a super-premium bourbon aged with maple from the bats of World Series championship teams. The sweetness from the maple and earthiness from the pine tar will help create Champions Bourbon, pricing at $300 and available this fall using bats from last year’s Atlanta Braves championship team. Insert Bob yelling about the Braves here.
Several new whiskeys have come across our desk, and we highlight releases from Breckenridge Distillery, New Riff, and Law’s Whiskey House.
THE CRAFT SHOOT is back this month and folks, there’s nothing that can prepare our palates for what we’re about to partake in. Whether or not that’s good or bad, you’ll have to listen to find out.
When the folks from Shake Shack contacted us about their new Bourbon Bacon Cheddar Burger & Chicken Sandwich, asking us to take it for a taste test on the podcast we were hesitant. We drink bourbon, we’re not known for eating…wait a minute. Do they want us to eat a couple of sandwiches and record our thoughts? Although this is an audio piece, most of you have seen Pops and Bob. Do you think they’re passing this up? Yeah, we didn’t think so either. So in a slight departure, we follow the craft shoot with a food tasting. We take one for the team so you know whether or not the new Shake Shack sandwiches with Maker’s Mark bacon jam is worth your time. Perhaps we'll follow the craft shoot with food reviews moving forward since we typically need a palate cleanser after that segment.
We close the episode with the most honest segment in all of bourbon podcasting…BOURBON BULLSHIT. By the way, Pops and Bob are headed on the road soon and are hoping our loyal listeners will give them a list of their favorite honey holes and secret locations so they can come through and snag some bottles….
Beam had a lot going on this month, but an $80 bourbon that’s only two years old isn’t something we’re thrilled to see on the shelf. It’s likely going to stay there too. Brad Paisley is on the highway again with his “rolling rickhouse” and subpar bourbon at an absorbent price, which we can’t help but comment on. Then there’s a distillery releasing a CASK STRENGTH BOTTLED-IN-BOND WHISKEY! Despite being called out when they announced it, they doubled down on how the TTB let it slide. They knew better, but since they could, they did. Until the label was rescinded.
Just before we hit record for this episode, the winners were announced for the Ascot Awards. You’ve heard us on this already, but the results were nothing short of embarrassing. At least those we could get through while we were recording. Double Platinum went to such classic juggernauts as Deep Eddy Ruby Red Vodka + Soda and Evan Williams Egg Nog. Not quite as good though, according to the medal results, was the standard Russell’s Reserve Single Barrel, only earning a Platinum medal. We’ll pause here to let that sink in….
As the most honest podcast in bourbon we're don't pull any punches and we tell it like we see it. If you've been searching for a bourbon podcast that provides honest reviews, to the point information, and doesn't take itself too seriously – welcome home!
Here’s the breakdown for Episode #25 – Wind Beneath My Wings
- Whiskey News (23:53)
- Craft Shoot (52:44)
- Shake Shack Tasting (1:01:23)
- Bourbon Bullshit (1:14:18)
Are you ready? Pour yourself a drink, get comfortable, and listen to Episode 25 using the player above or via your favorite podcast player.
Warning: If you're not comfortable with unapologetic, independent thinking, plus a healthy dose of swearing, you might want to skip this one folks. It's recorded at barrel strength with full-throttle banter.
Listen via your preferred podcast player
We sure hope you enjoyed episode #25 of the official Bourbon & Banter podcast and that you'll consider sharing it with your friends. We'd love to hear what you think in the comments below or by sending us an email via our podcast email address.
Have a great weekend and remember to stay safe while you're spreading the bourbon gospel and learning to #drinkcurious.
Hey, wait a minute. You have listened to all of our previous episodes, right? If not, head on over to our Bourbon & Banter Podcast page to get caught up.
The fifteen months Bob Bennett spent living in Lebanon, KY, as a child may have laid the groundwork for what would happen years later (something in the water…literally). Originally from Corning, NY, he grew up in a household where happy hour was celebrated every night. Surprisingly, Bennett didn’t start drinking until he was 23 years old. He quickly made up for lost time, gravitating to bourbon as his preferred libation immediately, and proudly filled the bar that was passed down from his father. In the years that followed, not only did he develop a deeper appreciation for bourbon, but began to cherish the opportunity to talk about the spirit he has grown to love. As the Artistic Director for Jazz St. Louis, Bennett has become the unofficial bourbon ambassador of jazz, spreading the gospel of good taste to musicians everywhere. It also helps endear him to the St. Louis community, which is needed, as bleeding Dodger Blue tends to rub those Cardinal fans the wrong way.
Read Bob's full profile.
Patrick Garrett, "Pops" as he's known to his friends, is the founder of Bourbon & Banter, LLC and claims the title of Chief Drinking Officer (CDO). A long-time marketing professional and photographer, Pops hopes to use his professional experience and love of Bourbon to spread the Bourbon Gospel and help everyone realize the therapeutic power of having a good drink with friends. Read Patrick's full profile.