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This Week on WhiskyCast

"Three Drinkers" stars Colin Hampden-White, Helena Nicklin, and Aidy Smith. Photo ©2019, Mark Gillespie/CaskStrength Media.

Amazon: Now Delivering Whisky Videos (Episode 755: February 17, 2019)

Amazon delivers almost everything…even whisky in some places. Now, Amazon Prime Video is delivering content for whisky lovers. We’ll talk with the Three Drinkers: Aidy Smith, Helena Nicklin, and Colin Hampden-White, about their new series that’s almost like whisky’s “Top Gear.” If you’re more into serious conversation, Fred Minnick’s interview series “Bourbon Up” has also made its debut on Amazon Prime. We caught up with Fred at Louisville’s Silver Dollar whiskey bar, and this episode was recorded on location at the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience on “Whiskey Row” downtown.

In the news, we now have concrete proof that the American whiskey industry is being affected by the trade war, while Scotch Whisky exports reached a new record in 2018. Distell’s two-year renovation and upgrade project at Tobermory Distillery is almost complete, while Diageo is moving forward with plans for a new Johnnie Walker Experience visitors center in Edinburgh. We’ll also look at the origins of whisky tourism on Behind the Label, and it goes back much farther than you might think!

 

The Jefferson's Journey barrels leave Florida on a boat bound for New York City. Photo courtesy Castle Brands.

Whiskey On the Water: Jefferson’s Journey (Episode 754: February 10, 2019)

Long before highways crossed North America, flatboats with barrels of whiskey were a common sight along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers bound for New Orleans and beyond to satisfy the thirst of early consumers. Fortunately, today’s route to market for distillers is paved and far more efficient – but Jefferson’s Bourbon founder Trey Zoeller wanted to figure out what made the whiskey his predecessors distilled in Kentucky become so popular. He decided to send a couple of barrels from Louisville to New York City by boat in what became a year-long journey filled with tropical storms, a wrecked boat, and barrel repairs on the fly – while a batch of the same whiskey stayed behind in the rickhouse to provide a control sample. Both whiskies have now gone on sale, and we’ll talk about the journey with Trey Zoeller on WhiskyCast In-Depth.

In the news, the deadline to avoid another federal government shutdown is approaching, and failure to reach a deal in Washington could cause even more problems for whisky makers. We’ll also look at the economic impact of Kentucky’s booming Bourbon industry and get an update on record ticket sales for May’s Spirit of Speyside Festival in Scotland.

Panelists Rick Seback, Bobby Long, Scott Ritenbaugh, and Christian Kahle with WhiskyCast's Mark Gillespie (C) at the HIAS Benefit Tasting on November 26, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Photo ©2018/CaskStrength Media.

WhiskyCast Tasting Panel: An Evening With the Pittsburgh Whiskey Friends

When the Pittsburgh Whiskey Friends invited us to come to their city and lead a benefit tasting in honor of the 11 people killed in the October 27, 2018 mass shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue, we didn’t hesitate. This episode was recorded at the tasting on November 26, 2018 in Pittsburgh, with all of the proceeds going to benefit the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS) in memory of the Tree of Life shooting victims. Dad’s Hat, Powers, Amrut importer Raj Sabharwal, and Liberty Pole Spirits donated the whiskies for the evening, and Christian Kahle won a raffle for one of the spots on our tasting panel. He joined Bobby Long and Scott Ritenbaugh from the Pittsburgh Whiskey Friends and public broadcasting personality Rick Seback to taste the Dad’s Hat Pre-Prohibition Style Pennsylvania Rye, Powers Three Swallow, Amrut Fusion, and Liberty Pole’s Peated Bourbon.

 

 WhiskyCast HD: Catching Up with Forty Creek Whisky Founder John Hall

Forty Creek Whisky founder John K. Hall has kept a low profile since selling his distillery to Campari five years ago. He won dozens of awards for his whiskies at Forty Creek, and turned his startup into one of the best-selling Canadian whiskies around – earning him a place in Canadian Whisky history. Hall returned to the 2019 Victoria Whisky Festival for the first time since the sale to serve as the keynote speaker for the Canadian Whisky Awards dinner. In an exclusive interview with WhiskyCast’s Mark Gillespie, he shared his thoughts on today’s whisky business and whether he may make a comeback once his non-compete agreement with Campari expires later this year.


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WhiskyCast has been around longer than any other whisky-focused podcast, and we’re now in our 14th year of podcasts! We bring you the latest whisky news twice each week, along with in-depth interviews, tasting notes, and much more. Each podcast features brand-new content, and unless there’s a special occasion, we don’t do “best of” shows. However, there will be times when we’re traveling or during the holidays when we’ll produce just one show during the week, and we’ll try to let you know ahead of time.

If you’re just discovering us for the first time, here’s a bit of our own story. WhiskyCast pioneered the genre of whisky-focused podcasts back in 2005, when most people had never heard of podcasting! Since then, we’ve produced hundreds of hours of original – and free – audio and video content for whisky lovers like you around the world. Our community spans the globe, and we’ve done stories on whiskies made in the far north of Scandinavia all the way to the tips of South Africa and Australia – and everywhere in between. We’ve met many of you at whisky festivals and while visiting distilleries, and hope to meet many more of you over time.

Please explore the website. We’ve collected all of our past episodes here, and post the latest whisky news as it happens – often several days before the next episode of WhiskyCast. All of our web content is free, including Mark Gillespie’s database of more than 2,400 tasting notes for whiskies from around the world and our calendar of upcoming whisky festivals and tastings.

We’re able to do this thanks to the support of our advertisers – both past and present. They advertise on WhiskyCast knowing that they will never have any say over our editorial content, and may even have their ads running next to features on their competitors. They recognize the importance of independent, fact-based journalism devoted to telling the stories of whisky in a creative, yet ethically sound way focused on helping you learn more about whisky.

Slainte!

The WhiskyCast Team


Whisky Photo of the Week

Our Whisky Photo of the Week honors Martin Macdonald of Scotland's Balblair Distillery, who celebrated his 40th anniversary on the job this week. You can meet Martin and the rest of the Balblair team in our WhiskyCast HD story shot at Balblair in 2011.

Our Whisky Photo of the Week honors Martin Macdonald of Scotland’s Balblair Distillery, who celebrated his 40th anniversary on the job this week. You can meet Martin and the rest of the Balblair team in our WhiskyCast HD story shot at Balblair in 2011.


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