Distilling in the Past

Distilling in the Past

It’s easy to get caught up in the romanticism of the “good ole' days." In the liquor industry, we actively try and do as much as we can the same way it was done a century or two ago, at least when it comes to the actual craft of making the product. Sure, some labor-saving machines increase production scale. And, don't forget the backend lifesavers like accounting software that keep you compliant with the man. But, we still use oak barrels and rackhouses instead of plastic vats and a glorified lab.

Backwoods Rebels and Outlaws and the Birth of Racing

Backwoods Rebels and Outlaws and the Birth of Racing

If horse racing is the sport of kings, NASCAR is the sport of rebels and outlaws. It reflects a big difference in the attitudes and history of these sports. Horse racing, as we know it, grew out of war. Kings and emperors would send their best knights and warriors to face off in tournaments, like all the jousting you see in the movies. It was done as a display of wealth and authority. They wanted to let the little people know just how much power and authority their rulers had.

Prohibition from the Mouths of Those Who Were There

Prohibition from the Mouths of Those Who Were There

The most trying times can bring out the best in people, or the worst in people. Sometimes though, it brings out clever things to say. Prohibition is definitely one of those times. The people who needed a drink had it bad. The people tasked with stopping them from having a drink had it bad. The people bootlegging the illegal liquor had it bad, but at least they had fat wallets to kind of make things better.

The Manhattan Bootleg Wars

The Manhattan Bootleg Wars

Managing a craft distillery today may be challenging, but it’s no where near as complicated as it was in the 20’s. Distillers today worry about compliance. Those of past worried less about following the rules…In fact, most of the time it was a war between rival gangs about who made the rules.

The Justice System, Jerry Springer, and Jack “Legs” Diamond’s Legacy

The Justice System, Jerry Springer, and Jack “Legs” Diamond’s Legacy

Every moonshiner and bootlegger has a story about how he got started. Most of the time, it’s folks carrying on a family tradition or making a living the only way they know how. Noble reasons or not, bootlegging is an illegal activity, and it can attract the kind of people you don’t dare look at sideways. When it boils down to it, there are two types of outlaws in this world – those who turn to crime because they don’t have any other choice and those who are just plain mean.