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Issue 41 - Castinganeyetothefuture

Whisky Magazine Issue 41
July 2004

 

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Castinganeyetothefuture

Thismonth'sdebatelooksatthefutureroleofagestatementsonbourbons

ThePanel
FrankColeman,Seniorvicepresidentforpublicrelations,DistilleriesCounciloftheUnitedStates(FC)
CharlesCowdery,WhiskyMagazineAmericancorrespondent(CKC)
DominicRoskrow,WhiskyMagazineEditor(DR)
KenWeber,GlobalBrandDirector,BuffaloTrace(KW)

Thedebate:What'sthefutureforbourbonandwhatwillinfluenceit?

Q:Isthemovetointroducingolderbourbonswithagestatementsonthelabelafashionthingorareweseeingsomegenuinelyinterestingproducts?

KW:Asdistilleriesstrivetoproducehigherqualityproducts,theentirecategorywillgrow.Iseeitasanaturalprogressionthatwillkeepthecategoryfrombecomingstaleandoutoftouchwithwhatconsumerswant.

CKC:Thereisalwayssomeelementoffashioninnewproductintroductions,whichisn'tnecessarilybad,buttherearegenuinelyinterestingproductsinthemixtoo.Manyoftheextra-agedproductsnowavailablereallyopenupyourmindastohowbourboncantaste.

DR:Yes,fashionisn'tabadthingatall.Ifyou'rebringingin100newdrinkersand95moveonasfashionschange,that'sstillfivenewdrinkers.Andnewtrendsarethewayinwhichweprogress,afterall.

Q:Isthereadangerthatamentalityof‘oldermeansbetter'mightcreepinanddamagethereputationoffinebourbon?

DR:Thisisthecasewithanywhiskyandit'sthesortofuntruththatneedstobedispelledwhereveritarises.Youhopeandpresumethatanyonefindingpremiumbourbonwillgettoknowenoughaboutittounderstandthatsomegreatbourbonsareattheirbestatsayfiveorsixyearsoldandwouldn'tbenefitfromlengthiermaturationperiods.AndthenagainJulianVanWinklewillpluckoutacrackeragedmorethan15yearsold.There'sahugepersonalpreferencethinginv...

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