The Tasting Panel magazine

November 2016

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november 2016  /  the tasting panel  /  5 Twenty-two years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, a Master Distiller named Basil Hayden Sr. added small grains into a conventionally corn-based mash bill. Honoring his whiskey and legacy, the modern-day Basil Hayden's continues the tradition of small batches and a higher percentage of rye than other bourbons. Complementing the contents inside, the hand-crafted bottle's design exemplifies a beauty that falls outside the norm. Its "dress" inspired our Women in Whiskey series to pair the whiskey with a lesson in fashion for bartenders in both Los Angeles and San Francisco. Nod to the Past and Toast to the Future Four fictional femme fatales inspired Megan Breier, West Coast Bourbon Ambassador for Beam Suntory, to craft an afternoon of literary-themed cocktails. With their personas brought to life through a costume exhibit showcasing the fashions of their era and bar craft that cast bygone flavors in a modern light, our literary heroines gracefully illustrated the 200-year timeline of Basil Hayden's Small Batch Bourbon. "In 1796, whiskey that was being created in Kentucky was synonymous with corn until Master Distiller Basil Hayden Sr. created a recipe that added significant amounts of rye to the mash bill," said Breier, who recently relocated from Kentucky to San Francisco. "Rye adds spice and complexity to this smooth, mild whiskey that's bottled at 80 proof, which makes Basil Hayden's the mildest of the four bourbons in the Jim Beam Small Batch Bourbon collection." Basil Hayden created his signature bourbon at the turn of the 19th century when England was Europe's fashion capital. Elizabeth Bennet, Jane Austin's feisty English heroine in Pride and Prejudice, epitomizes the Regency Period, which is unmis- takable for its flowing Grecian-inspired dresses that celebrated the natural form. Bartender Suzie Robinson's Lizzie Bennet cocktail combined Basil Hayden's, Calvados, PHOTO: CRAIG LEE Guests hold up their personalized Basil Hayden's bottle, which they "dressed" and filled with raw ingredients from the whiskey's mash bill. Back row: Ashlee Ingram, May Lay, Beam Suntory West Coast Bourbon Ambassador Megan Breier, Kori Ashbee, Dallas Emmett, Julie Carranza, Amy Pareno, Heather Lunan, Becca Gomez Farrell and Amy Franck. Front row: Kaela Miller, The Tasting Panel's Associate Publisher Rachel Burkons and Nonna Titulauri.

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