Class Time

Dallas bourbon drinkers get schooled by Woodford Reserve master distiller

Bourbon drinkers get schooled by Woodford Reserve master distiller

Blake Rogers, Josh Kretchmer, School of Bourbon
Blake Rogers, Josh Kretchmer Photo by William Neal
Landon Haaf, Kate Jolliff, School of Bourbon
Landon Haaf, Kate Jolliff Photo by William Neal
Chris Morris, School of Bourbon
Chris Morris Photo by William Neal
Jen Cross, Rebecca Carroll, School of Bourbon
Jenn Cross, Rebecca Carroll Photo by William Neal
School of Bourbon
Prior to the tasting, attendees sipped cocktails made with Woodford Reserve and Old Forester. Photo by William Neal
School of Bourbon
Guests sampled four bourbon varieties: Old Forester 100 Proof, Old Forester 86 Proof, Woodford Reserve and Woodford Reserve Double Oaked. Photo by William Neal
School of Bourbon
Guests chatted while they sipped. Photo by William Neal
School of Bourbon
Students swirled the bourbon in their glasses. Photo by William Neal
School of Bourbon
More than 150 turned out for the School of Bourbon at 333 First Avenue. Photo by William Neal
Mary Lee, Gordon Green, School of Bourbon
Mary Lee, Gordon Green Photo by William Neal
Kevin Welch, Hunter Haygood, School of Bourbon
Kevin Welch, Hunter Haygood Photo by William Neal
Josh Robertson, Katherine Mongan, School of Bourbon
Josh Robertson, Katherine Mongan Photo by William Neal
School of Bourbon
Guests learned about the flavors, aromas and colors of the bourbons, as well as the distilling process. Photo by William Neal
Whitney Terrell, Jeremy WIlmer, School of Bourbon
Whitney Terrell, Jeremy Wilmer Photo by William Neal
Abby Mayer, Garrett Mayer, School of Bourbon
Abby Mayer, Garrett Mayer Photo by William Neal
David Page, Chris Morris, Brian Certain at School of Bourbon
David Page, Chris Morris, Brian Certain Photo by William Neal
Blake Rogers, Josh Kretchmer, School of Bourbon
Landon Haaf, Kate Jolliff, School of Bourbon
Chris Morris, School of Bourbon
Jen Cross, Rebecca Carroll, School of Bourbon
School of Bourbon
School of Bourbon
School of Bourbon
School of Bourbon
School of Bourbon
Mary Lee, Gordon Green, School of Bourbon
Kevin Welch, Hunter Haygood, School of Bourbon
Josh Robertson, Katherine Mongan, School of Bourbon
School of Bourbon
Whitney Terrell, Jeremy WIlmer, School of Bourbon
Abby Mayer, Garrett Mayer, School of Bourbon
David Page, Chris Morris, Brian Certain at School of Bourbon

A sold-out crowd packed into 333 First Avenue Monday night for School of Bourbon hosted by CultureMap, where Woodford Reserve master distiller Chris Morris took 150 boozy students through the history of two brands, Old Forester and Woodford Reserve. Both are owned by Brown-Forman, the oldest spirits distillery in the United States.

Upon arrival, studious tipplers — including Derek Schuster, Joe Lafko, Matt Foster, Josh Robertson, Katherine Mongan, Jeneva O’Connor, Ann Parrish, Scott Talley, Bryan Smith, Jake Maes, Justin Baldwin, Gary Jones and Kevin Lavelle — headed to the bar for one of three cocktails: Woodford Manhattan, Old Forester Old Fashioned, or Woodford Belmont Jewel with lemonade and pomegranate juice. After noshing on a few bites from Wendy Krispin Caterer, they settled into their seats, ready to learn. 

Students got schooled on four bourbon varieties: Old Forester 100 Proof, Old Forester 86 Proof, Woodford Reserve and Woodford Reserve Double Oaked. Morris explained Old Forester’s beginnings as the original bottled bourbon in 1870, as well as the shift in 1959, when the distillery introduced its 86 proof variety as a cocktail base during what he called “the Mad Men years.”

Woodford Reserve, Morris said, was introduced in 1996, after American tastes began to embrace the richness and complexities of bourbon again after decades of Mai Tais and Tequila Sunrises. Woodford Reserve Double Oaked was the distillery’s response to drinkers’ demand for an ultra-premium version.

Lest you think this was only an excellent excuse to drink good bourbon, all proceeds went to the North Texas Food Bank