Whiskey-making often runs in families, and there’s no more clear example of that than the Noes. Legendary distiller Booker Noe was the grandson of Jim Beam himself, and he passed the torch to his son, Fred. Now Fred’s own son, Freddie, has joined the business; in 2017, he came out swinging with Little Book, a blended whiskey inspired by his grandfather and number 11 in the Top 20 Whiskies of 2017. Whisky Advocate wanted to know what it’s like to participate in such a proud legacy during the day-to-day work of distilling. This conversation between father and son reveals the joys—and occasional frustrations—of making whiskey as a family.
The type of still used to make a bourbon, rye, or other whiskey has a big impact on its final flavor.
Grains like corn and rye have to be converted into mash and beer before they’re ready for the still.