The Bourbon & Banter podcast is no stranger to craft distilleries, although many of them wish we were…. Our craft shoot segment has become a favorite of listeners, but not necessarily of distilleries. So when we say there’s a craft operation to keep an eye on you know we’re on to something. Enter KO Distilling.
The Manassas, VA, distillery has come a long way in the six years they’ve been in operation. Lifelong friends Bill Karlson and John O’Mara (the K and O in KO Distilling) have built a fantastic distillery, focusing on locally sourced ingredients, high-quality production methods, and a passion that they love to share with their local community.
Their line has expanded from unaged whiskey and gin when they first came online in 2015 to a full lineup of American whiskeys that includes their Bare Knuckle bourbons, rye, and wheat whiskey, Distiller’s Reserve bourbon and rye, and Battle Standard gins. KO Distilling has also expanded production to where they are now contract distilling as well.
Pops and Bob sit down with the team at KO for an in-depth look at the growth, operation, and future of their distillery. They’re joined by Bill Karlson (co-owner), Ryan Hendricks (head distiller), and Peter Mowery (Virginia Sales & Marketing Director).
We hope you enjoy this look behind the scenes of a working craft distillery that we think you’ll be hearing a lot more from.
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Have a great week and remember to stay safe while you're spreading the bourbon gospel and learning to #drinkcurious.
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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.
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.