A Warren Visit From Mr. Bottled-In-Bond! - Warren Delray
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A Warren Visit From Mr. Bottled-In-Bond!

People often ask me if brown spirits were so dead for so long then what happened to bring them to the point where they are now? (and that point is probably their peak of popularity all-time!)

There is no one simple answer to that but more likely a confluence of pop culture connections and more important: people whose passion have pushed brown spirits back to the forefront this past decade plus.

Bernie Lubbers is one of those people.

As the International Brand Ambassador for Heaven Hill Distillery, Bernie has almost single handedly revived the bottled-in-bond category. A quick refresher: bottled-in-bond was an act by our federal government in 1897 to finally offer some regulation to what was then the wild West of whiskey.

At the time, Colonel E.H. Taylor, often called the father of modern bourbon, called on his friends in the federal government (he was related to Presidents Zach Taylor and James Madison) to come in and offer regulation to any distilleries willing to subject themselves to inspection and a higher standard. The colonel had grown weary of moonshining competitors who were literally making people sick with their substandard, often dangerous whiskey filled with all kinds of filler (read; crap).

The Act was an immediate success as people knew these new offerings labeled “Bottled-In-Bond” were of higher quality, but more important, safe to drink! They keep feel safe knowing they would not get sick. Or die!

While Buffalo Trace and their E.H. Taylor line are often considered the elite B-I-B, it is actually Heaven Hill Distillery that has embraced it the most and offer the most different labels featuring this designation.

Bernie Lubbers is the main reason for that.

Bernie has toured the country (and the world) as the champion of B-I-B and has actually written a book (Google his name and you will find a link to Amazon for purchase) about why it still so important today. The simple answer to that: with the proliferation of new distilleries everywhere, any one of these that subjects their product to the B-I-B regulation has demonstrated the willingness to put out a safe, superior product!

We were fortunate enough to have Bernie in for a Warren staff training recently and I was able to sit and pick his brain for about an hour beforehand. Trust me, his passion for brown spirits is never waning and according to leady industry expert Fred Minnick: “Bernie Lubbers has almost singlehandedly kept the B-I-B relevant and thriving!”

Thank you, Bernie! Keep on Bottle in Bonding!

Cheers!

Fitz


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