Friday, March 1, 2024

B&M Digest, Volume I, Issue 05

Welcome to the latest edition of Bourbon and Mead Digest, where we bring you the latest news and updates from the world of bourbon, mead, and everything in between. From new releases and collaborations to industry accolades and cultural highlights, we've curated a diverse selection of stories to keep you informed and entertained. So grab your favorite glass, settle in, and let's explore the vibrant and ever-evolving landscape of bourbon and mead together. Cheers!

NJ Elixir: A Modern Revival of Ancient Mead on Somerville's Main Street

Somerville's Main Street is about to get a sweet upgrade with the arrival of NJ Elixir, set to breathe new life into the age-old tradition of mead. With a nod from the Somerville Planning Board, this upcoming establishment aims to honor the historical significance of mead while adding a contemporary twist to its offerings. From traditional meads to innovative blends like hippocras and capsicumel, NJ Elixir promises a diverse array of flavors to tantalize the taste buds. But it's not just about the drinks; NJ Elixir envisions becoming a cultural hub, fostering community engagement by encouraging patrons to pair their mead with local cuisine. With enthusiastic support from the local authorities and the community, NJ Elixir is poised to not only become a landmark in Somerville but also a testament to the enduring appeal of ancient traditions in the modern world. So, raise a glass and join the buzz as NJ Elixir prepares to open its doors, inviting Somerville to savor the sweet taste of history with every sip.

JJ Grey and St. Augustine Distillery Craft Soulful Collaboration: Rolling Rooster Bourbon

Renowned musician JJ Grey and St. Augustine Distillery have unveiled a new bourbon collaboration, Rolling Rooster, blending Grey's musical inspiration with the distillery's expertise. Drawing from Grey's latest album, 'Olustee,' Rolling Rooster captures the essence of warm marshmallows, cocoa, and subtle oak. Reflecting Grey's love for Southern comfort, the bourbon promises a smooth journey back home with every sip. Richard deMontmollin, VP of Production at St. Augustine Distillery, expressed excitement about the partnership, highlighting the perfect harmony achieved between Grey's soulful touch and the distillery's craft. Available for pre-order now, Rolling Rooster is set to debut at the end of May, offering aficionados a limited opportunity to savor this unique collaboration. For more information, visit JJ Grey's website.

Obscurity Mead Hall and Cidery Introduces Exciting New Cider Lineup with Fresh Team Additions

Obscurity Mead Hall and Cidery, nestled in Elburn, Illinois, has unveiled a tantalizing new line of ciders, signaling a bold move into the cider market for 2024. Spearheaded by the expertise of their latest team members, Zak Beckman and Doug Will, Obscurity's latest creations boast three delectable flavors: Tart Cherry, Pineapple, and Berry Rosé, marking a departure into sweeter cider varieties. Beckman, formerly of 2 Fools Cider, brings a wealth of experience, enhancing Obscurity's fermentation processes and flavor profiles. Collaborating closely with head brewer Carson Souza, Beckman is set to elevate both the cidery and brewery's offerings, promising more innovative concoctions in the future. With expansion plans on the horizon and newfound visibility, Obscurity Mead Hall and Cidery aims to share their hidden gem status with cider enthusiasts far and wide, with Beckman's creations soon to grace shelves across the Midwest. Keep an eye out for their latest releases, as Obscurity continues to redefine the boundaries of cider craftsmanship.

Lost Lantern Launches Inaugural Regional Collection Spotlighting Midwest Whiskies

Lost Lantern, renowned for its thematic whiskey releases, unveils its first regional collection focusing on the Midwest. Co-founder Nora Ganley-Roper emphasizes the region's underappreciated status in the whiskey world, highlighting its rich agricultural heritage and unique climate conditions. The Spring 2024 Collection features seven distinct bottlings, including a multi-state rye blend and single casks from renowned distilleries such as Starlight Distillery, Cedar Ridge, and Tom's Foolery. Each expression embodies the Midwest's character, from the rich and creamy notes of Far-Flung Rye to the spicy elegance of Middle West Ohio Straight Rye. Available for purchase starting March 27th, this collection offers whiskey enthusiasts a chance to explore the diverse and exceptional spirits emerging from America's heartland. Visit Lost Lantern's website for more details and to experience the essence of Midwest whiskey.

Sazerac Barrel Select Launches Blanton’s Gold Charity Sweepstakes Benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Sazerac Barrel Select introduces a unique opportunity for bourbon enthusiasts with the Blanton’s Gold Charity Sweepstakes, offering the chance to select and purchase a barrel of coveted Blanton’s Gold Bourbon. Proceeds from the sweepstakes will support St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The winner will enjoy an exclusive VIP tour and barrel selection experience at Buffalo Trace Distillery, along with a $20,000 prize to purchase personalized bottles from their selected barrel. Entries can be made through donations on the registration site until February 29, 2024. This initiative underscores Sazerac's commitment to philanthropy while providing a rare opportunity for whiskey aficionados to contribute to a noble cause. Visit for more information and to participate in this charitable event.

Milam & Greene Unveils Golden Eagle Single Barrel Bourbon as First Release in 2024 Wildlife Collection

Milam & Greene Whiskey introduces the Golden Eagle Single Barrel Bourbon, the first release from its 2024 Wildlife Collection. This limited-edition, cask-strength bourbon highlights the impact of Texas Hill Country's weather on flavor development, aiming to raise awareness about climate issues while supporting Texas Parks and Wildlife causes. With only 169 bottles available, this exclusive release embodies the strength and beauty of the iconic Golden Eagle, offering intense cherry, oak, and almond flavors. Distilled in Tennessee and aged for seven years, eleven months, and seven days, this collector's item is priced at $149.99 and can be purchased exclusively on the Milam & Greene website and in their distillery tasting room. Don't miss out on this fast-selling series that promises a unique whiskey experience while contributing to conservation efforts in Texas. Visit the Milam & Greene website for more details.

Greg Metze of Old Elk Distillery Wins Master Distiller/Master Blender of the Year at 2024 Icons of Whisky Awards

Old Elk Distillery proudly announces that their Master Distiller, Greg Metze, has been honored with the prestigious Master Distiller/Master Blender of the Year Award at the 2024 Icons of Whisky Awards. This accolade recognizes Metze's remarkable legacy and dedication to crafting world-class whiskeys. Metze's expertise has been pivotal in shaping Old Elk's reputation for excellence, with his innovative approach to whiskey-making earning widespread acclaim. The award ceremony, held in Louisville, Kentucky, celebrates Metze's exceptional contributions to the industry and solidifies his status as one of its finest craftsmen. Under his leadership, Old Elk has thrived, producing award-winning whiskeys that have garnered acclaim across the nation. Metze's win is a testament to his decades of experience and the passion he brings to the art of distillation. For more information about Greg Metze and his work, visit the Old Elk Distillery website.

Traditionalist Distillery's Classic Straight Bourbon Wins Gold Medal at American Craft Spirits Judging

Southeast Minnesota's Traditionalist Distillery, situated within Four Daughters Vineyard & Winery in Spring Valley, achieves a significant milestone as their Classic Straight Bourbon Whiskey earns a Gold Medal at the Annual Judging of American Craft Spirits. Among only 16 bourbons nationwide to receive this prestigious accolade, The Traditionalist's bourbon stands out as a testament to their dedication to quality. Co-founder Justin Osborne expresses excitement over the recognition, emphasizing the years of investment and anticipation leading up to this moment. With the distinction of being the sole recipient of Gold and Silver Medals for bourbon in Minnesota, The Traditionalist underscores its commitment to excellence and promises further refinement in the years ahead. The recognition from industry professionals at the American Craft Spirits Association validates their efforts and sets the stage for continued success in the craft spirits arena.

Michter’s Unveiled 2024 Limited Edition US*1 Barrel Strength Kentucky Straight Rye

Leap Day brought exciting news for whiskey enthusiasts as Michter’s announced the release of their highly anticipated 2024 Limited Edition US*1 Barrel Strength Kentucky Straight Rye. Following the exceptional quality of its predecessor in 2022, last year's release boasted a proof of 110.2 (55.1% ABV), maintaining the high standards Michter’s was known for. President Joseph J. Magliocco expressed his excitement for this special whiskey, highlighting the expertise of Master Distiller Dan McKee and Master of Maturation Andrea Wilson in deeming it ready for release. Wilson, a Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Famer, described the Barrel Strength Rye as a smooth and beautifully balanced journey of flavor, showcasing sweet, savory, and spice characters. Priced at $110 for a 750ml bottle in the United States, this limited edition offering continued Michter’s legacy of delivering uncompromising quality and exceptional taste in American whiskey. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to savor this bold and complex expression from Michter’s esteemed portfolio.

Beehive Dreams: Five Hives & Vines Faces Zoning Hurdles in Bulloch County

Five Hives & Vines, a proposed meadery in rural Bulloch County, Georgia, faces zoning challenges as it seeks to realize its vision of a honey-based alcoholic beverage facility alongside berry fields and event spaces. Led by Eric Van Otteren and his family, the venture aims to blend Dutch heritage with agricultural innovation, offering meads flavored with muscadine grapes, blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries. Despite opposition and zoning setbacks, the team remains determined to bring Bulloch County its first meadery, navigating regulatory hurdles and planning for potential alternatives while embracing the honeyed potential of their proposed home zone.

Chicken Cock Whiskey Partners with New Orleans Bourbon Festival for Exclusive Single Barrel Double Oak Release

Chicken Cock Whiskey and the New Orleans Bourbon Festival join forces to craft a unique Single Barrel Double Oak Kentucky Whiskey, priced at $149.99 and available exclusively at the festival and select local retailers. With roots dating back to the late 1830s in New Orleans, Chicken Cock Whiskey pays homage to its historical ties with the city through this limited-edition offering. Aged for nine years, with the final two in new American White Oak, this 119.6-proof whiskey boasts a level four char, delivering a distinct flavor profile. Hand-picked by Chicken Cock's Master Distiller and the festival organizers, this collaboration celebrates the rich heritage of both the brand and the city, encapsulating the spirit of the renowned event.

Ragged Branch Distillery Releases Limited Edition Foxfield Races Bourbon

Ragged Branch Distillery introduces the Foxfield Races Select bourbon to commemorate the 45th Running of the Foxfield Races on April 27. Available in Virginia ABC stores and at the distillery, this hand-selected two-barrel batch features a mash bill of corn, rye, and malted barley, aged for over five years, double-oaked, and Bottled-in-Bond, priced at $56.99. Following their successful collaboration honoring Secretariat's Triple Crown win, Ragged Branch is excited to partner with Foxfield Races, echoing their shared commitment to Virginia history and tradition. Founding partner and head distiller Alex Toomy expresses enthusiasm for celebrating the event's anniversary in a unique and meaningful way. For more details, visit

Other Bourbon and Mead News

As we wrap up this edition of Bourbon and Mead Digest, we hope you've enjoyed our journey through the world of spirits and libations. From exciting collaborations and limited edition releases to industry insights and community initiatives, there's always something new to discover in the realm of bourbon and mead. Stay tuned for more updates and stories in the future, and until next time, may your glasses be full and your spirits high. Cheers!

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