Dave Pickerell left his post as the master distiller of Maker's Mark bourbon in April 2008 after about 14 years of making that signature red waxed-top whiskey. After 18 months of soul searching (or should I say warehouse searching?), he has launched a new rye label called WhistlePig
. Oh, did I also mention that he was the distiller of the recently released whiskey made at the rebuilt George Washington distillery at Mount Vernon
? Actually, Dave considers himself the Johnny Appleseed of American craft distilling, projecting that he will be involved in the production of more than 30 small distilleries in the next two years.
In December 8, 2009, Kentucky's Vendome Copper and Brass Works
, which makes much of our country's distillery equipment, introduced Dave to an entrepreneur by the name of Raj Peter Bhakta who had bought a 500 acre farm in Shoreman, Vermont that he named WhistlePig. A few weeks later, Raj and Dave shook hands on the farm and spent three days socializing that ended in a decision to do business together.
More after the jump ...