The Texas bartending community has come together to support each other in a cross promotion among breweries and bars around Texas. In early September, five bartenders representing four major Texas markets visited the Buffalo Trace distillery in Frankfurt, Kentucky. Austin’s Bill Norris (Alamo Drafthouse) and David Alan (Tipsy Texan), Houston’s Alex Gregg (Anvil Bar & Refuge), Dallas’s Michael Martensen (Cedar’s Social), and San Antonio’s Jeret Peña (The Esquire Tavern) participated in a private barrel tasting in order to bring unique expressions to the state of Texas. After tasting eight barrels, the bartenders compared notes and chose four of the best bourbons to bring to the Texas markets.
Alex Gregg, of Anvil Bar and Refuge, remarks, “The whiskeys selected represent a broad spectrum of flavor profiles and highlight the extremes that occur during the aging process. The flavors range from the hot, spicy, aggressive seemingly rye to the soft, dusty, yet fruity nuanced.”
Michael Martensen, of The Cedars Social, says “An experience of a lifetime shared with the bar industry leaders of Texas. To sit down in one room, taste then compare notes and choose a whiskey that is only for Texas.”
Each Texas market will receive ¼ of each of the four barrels equating to one barrel of whiskey per market. The bottles will retain Buffalo Trace’s normal packaging and will be distinguished by a small gold coin with the outline of Texas and enumerated one through four.
The Buffalo Trace has been ordered by Republic National Distributing and is accessible to the four markets starting this week. Buffalo Trace will be available for purchase from Houston Wine Merchant, in Austin from Austin Wine Merchant, in San Antonio from Dons and Bens, and in Dallas from Centennial.
To make the most use of the collaboration, the empty barrels will be sent to breweries in each of the four markets in order to age beer for release several months from now. Karbach Brewing, (Houston), Jester King (Austin), Rahr and Sons (Fort Worth) and Ranger Creek (San Antonio) will each be receiving a barrel for their brews.