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May 20, 2016 – The Master Distiller at Whisky Advocate magazine’s reigning Distiller of the Year is departing after 38 years on the job. MGP Ingredients Master Distiller Greg Metze’s resignation was announced in a company news release issued late Friday afternoon.
MGP President and CEO Gus Griffin stated, “We appreciate all that Greg has done for us and the outstanding mentoring he has provided to the next generation of our Master Distillers. We wish Greg the best of luck with any endeavors he may pursue in the future.”
No reason for the departure was announced, and Metze’s final day with the company will be May 31. Metze worked as production coordinator at the Lawrenceburg, Indiana distillery starting in 1978 when it was owned by Seagram’s, and became Master Distiller in 2001 when Pernod Ricard acquired the facility as part of the Seagram’s corporate breakup. He stayed on through three different ownership groups over the last 15 years, with the last four after Kansas-based MGP acquired the distillery in 2012.
Last year, MGP released the first whiskey to be bottled under its own brand, a limited edition blend named Metze’s Select in honor of Metze’s career at the distillery. Metze has been responsible for a number of award-winning whiskies bottled by independent bottlers and other whiskey companies using bulk whiskey distilled at MGP. While the company’s client list is confidential, it is known that Diageo sources the whiskey for its Bulleit Rye and George Dickel Rye from MGP. In addition, High West has used MGP-produced spirit in many of its bottlings, and MGP-distilled whiskey is being used in the new Sagamore Spirit Rye Whiskey brand owned by Under Armour founder Kevin Plank while his new distillery is being built in Baltimore.
Editor’s note: This story was updated with additional information. According to an email from Greg Metze, his resignation is effective May 31.