Summary: Join Drew Hannush as he explores the rich history, stories, myths, and legends that surround our favorite spirit. From the ghosts of the Scottish Highlands, to bourbon legends like Colonel E.H. Taylor, to popular myths around how we taste and experience whisk(e)y - Drew is on a mission to help enrich your whiskey experience by finding the stories that hide behind the labels.
Interview: Fawn Weaver of Uncle Nearest
Join me as I share some of my exclusive interview with Jack Daniel's long time Chief Historian Nelson Eddy. In this episode, we'll focus on Jack Daniel's as Prohibition approached, the shootout in Nashville, we'll find out if it really was a safe that killed Jack Daniel, how the company survived prohibition, and a very interesting tie between Jack and Kentucky's most famous brand Jim Beam. We'll also talk about the Jack and Nearest Advancement Initiative, Fawn Weaver and Uncle Nearest.
Having not traveled to Virginia City before (I got close, as you will hear), I needed a local to give me the history and the feel of the place. After reaching out to the city, I was put in touch with Ron Gallagher, whose grandfather worked as a janitor at the Fourth Ward School back in the 1860s during the boom. Ron saw Virginia City turn from a ghost town to a tourist town when the TV show Bonanza hit the air. We discuss saloons, oyster shells, and what is left of old Virginia City.
Originally known as Frey Ranch Estate Distillery, this is one of a few distilleries in the world that source all of their grains from their own land. Think Kilchoman in Scotland or Waterford in Ireland. Now, to a new distiller with a new farm, that might not be such an advantage, but imagine having a 160+ year history of farm/ranch ownership. Colby has a real advantage in the grain growing area of his business, but what about learning the distilling part? Find out in this interview from Whiskey Lore.
Mark Twain moves on and an initial silver rush in Virginia City fades. Frustrated financiers look for a way to off-load their investments just before the Comstock yield's its greatest bounty. Meanwhile, two men - John Piper and William Brown find their own fortunes by serving up drinks, food, and entertainment to miners and money men alike. Join Drew Hannush of Whiskey Lore and Chris Wimmer of Legends of the Old West and hear the fate of Virginia City, Nevada.
Join me as I talk with one half of the brother team that returned their great, great, great grandfather's distillery to prominence. Andy Nelson is the Head Distiller at Nelson's Green Brier Distillery and this is the story of how they overcame money issues, youth, inexperience, a recession, and an old Tennessee Prohibition on distilling to get their family legacy restored.
From New York fashion photographer to starting a whiskey distillery in Colorado - quite the road for Michael Myers of Colorado Springs based 291 Distillery. We'll hear how he started as a one-man show, learned his craft, and as a tie into our Virginia City "Old West" episodes, we'll talk about his love for western movies. And we'll find out how a Weber Grill influences his whiskey...seriously! I'll also sample their Aspen influenced rye and bourbon (thanks to Michael his team for the samples).
The Al Young interview is likely my most treasured interview. It spoke to the very reason I started Whiskey Lore, to capture stories while the storytellers were still here to tell them. Little did I know that one month after our interview, Al Young would pass away at Christmas 2019. It's been just about a year since his passing and one thing I have never done is release the entire interview, front to back. I hope you enjoy it. There is some great history here. It is fun to revisit.
It was interesting listening back to this interview. It happened just over a year ago. How the world has changed. But Wally Dant and his family are still moving forward with Log Still Distillery and making great progress. In fact, they've released the name of their new gin and bourbon which I will mention in the episode. While there are moments of this interview that have been shared before, a lot of it will be new to you. Wally reveals a lot of what is coming for Log Still.
Steve Beam is the President and distiller at Limestone Branch and loves history. In this episode, he helps us understand the family tree of Dants and Beams as well as telling us about his journey into distilling. We'll also talk about the journey Yellowstone Bourbon has taken over the years.
This bonus episode is the first of a series of podcasts hosted by Drew Hannush of Whiskey Lore and Chris Wimmer of Black Barrel Media and the Legends of the Old West podcast. In part one, we look at the history of Virginia City and the Comstock Lode, including the namesakes for both. Chris also tells the story of a young writer named Samuel Clemens and Drew gives you a foundation's worth of knowledge about whisky in the Old West.
Drew sits down with Jim Shannon and Mike "Big Chief" Hiatt at Mike's home in Kentucky and discusses how the Whiskey Lore podcast came to be and we also find out Drew's top 3 recommended distillery tours in Kentucky (hint, one is not on the official Kentucky Bourbon Trail). We also taste Shackleton Blended Malt Scotch and Angel's Envy Cask Strength with a Port Wine Finish. This is the first episode in a series celebrating the 12 Days of Whiskey Lore. Cheers and Slainte mhath!
The story of Jack Daniel and Nathan "Uncle Nearest" Green could have been something much different - but in the hands of Fawn Weaver, she looked past headlines and social media to find the story behind the story. And her findings have led her to build a foundation in Nearest's name, a distillery in his honor, and it also brought her and the Jack Daniel's Distillery together to create an initiative that will help change the whiskey industry going forward.
In 2016, Best Selling Author Fawn Weaver was in Singapore with her movie executive husband, when a New York Times International article caught her attention. Was it possible that in an industry known for its Scots-Irish roots, actually had its biggest selling whisky taught to its founder by a slave? But the accompanying photo told a different story. And what Fawn uncovered, changed her life.
Take a trip with me to both sides of the Atlantic for more of my favorite stories from Scotland, Tennessee, and Kentucky. Joining me this week are Wally Dant of Log Still Distillery, Richard Paterson of Whyte & McKay, Andrew McKenzie-Smith of Lindores Abbey, Andy Nelson of Nelson's Green Brier, Fawn Weaver of Uncle Nearest, and Duncan Bryden who showed me around Strathdearn, near the Tomatin Distillery. This was a fun year of interviews, I hope you enjoy.