I love Jimmy Russell. Yes it is a bonified mancrush! I mean, how can you not love a man that has spent his life making great bourbon for the masses? Jimmy, for those of you who don’t know, is the Master Distiller at Wild Turkey bourbon distillery, where he has been making great bourbon since 1964! Yes, they year I was born he got the nod at Wild Turkey. He has been their master distiller for 47 years. And what is better is he is keeping the business in the family and training up his son Eddie to take over when he decides to retire, or more likely dies.
He sat down for lunch with the writers of the AskMen blog and had these five things that every man (or woman) should know about the greatest spirit on earth…
- Men drink bourbon straight. Jimmy tells us that bourbon is full of fusel oils and if you mix them with sugars you will have a bad hangover. Drink your bourbon straight.
- You can’t drink bourbon everywhere. Here he is speaking mostly about the South where they still have a lot of counties and municipalities that are “Dry”. Jimmy tells a story of walking down a street in Dallas, Texas sit in a bar and have a drink, walk a block up and its dry. Crazy stuff, I’m glad I don’t have to worry too much about it. Just one dry spot here in Idaho, and it is all the way on the other side of the state.
- Young people often prefer Bourbon to Scotch. This is interesting to me, because I definitely prefer the flavor of Bourbon. Now, don’t go all crazy, I know there is a large and loyal following for Scotch, and i’m trying and making some inroads into that spirit, but when presented with the choice I go bourbon every time. Seems like that is happening more and more with the younger generation. As Jimmy puts it, young people don’t want to drink “their Father’s” drink.
- Follow the “Three Finger” rule. “You know, in Kentucky we drink three fingers of bourbon. You know what three fingers is?” (Spreads his hand wide and points to his thumb, middle finger and pinky.) “We use a water glass for the bourbon and a shot glass for the water.” I love this man (Did I already say that?). And Finally;
- Distilleries smell like apples. Particularly in the Fall when the bourbon starts to cool off in the barrel warehouses they smell like a ripe juicy apple. I’d love to be there and smell that smell! Some day I will.
So there you have it straight from the Distiller’s mouth. Five things every(one) should know about bourbon. If Jimmy says it, it must be important.