Hiram Walker & Sons Process Engineer Kristy Fregonese examines a sample of corn. Photo ©2017, Mark Gillespie/CaskStrength Media.

Distilleries need tons of grain to make their whiskies, and the responsibility for making sure that grain meets quality control standards falls on “The Gatekeeper.” Almost every distillery has someone responsible for checking loads of grain as they arrive for moisture levels, mold, and other things that might otherwise slip through the cracks and not be caught until a whisky is already in the barrel. Kristy Fregonese is “The Gatekeeper” at Corby’s Hiram Walker Distillery in Windsor, Ontario, and it’s here job to not only monitor the grain as it comes in, but make sure the spent grains are also taken care of. We’ll meet “The Gatekeeper” on this week’s WhiskyCast In-Depth.

In the news, U.S. whisky makers are cheering the tax reform legislation signed into law this week. The new law includes several changes to the tax code that specifically benefit the whisky industry. New distilleries are open now in Kentucky and Scotland, and we’ll also have an update on last week’s story on a new world record for whisky bars.

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