Today was the kind of day when you really cherish your job at K&L. When people find out what I do for a living, they think everyday is like today was - a day spent hanging out with the best distiller in the United States, and one of the absolute masters in the world, Steve McCarthy. I can only wish every day could be so fun! Taking the time to fly down from Clear Creek Distillery in Portland, Steve brought his entire line-up of bottles with him for a staff seminar on eau de vie. Both the Redwood City and San Francisco stores got the pleasure of meeting with him as they nosed and sampled a slew of fruit liqueurs, eau de vies, brandies, grappas, and, of course, the highly sought after and often discussed Douglas Fir Eau de Vie, flavored with real pine tree!
Having already tasted through the entire selection on my visit to the Pac Northwest last summer (click here to read all the details about my trip to the distillery), I reveled in seeing the eyes of my co-workers light up and hearing their glowing responses after they finished. Jeff Garneau, not the most avid of spirits drinkers, was absolutely amazed. Our new guy Jason Marwedel, also not a huge advocate of all things distilled, was simply blown away and made sure he went home with a bottle of Steve's knockout pear brandy. Melissa Smith was in complete heaven as she began fantasizing about all the magical meals she could make with the crazy good liqueurs, and I just sat there smiling as I watched everyone learn what I already knew: Clear Creek spirits are so good they are life changing. Getting the chance to taste them with Steve himself only makes the experience even more fantastic. He has a calming and captivating effect on his audience and he really believes in making the absolute best products - not cutting corners and not cutting costs to do so.
Luckily for you all out there, I talked Steve into making another trip back to the Bay Area this summer to conduct the same seminar with some of our lovely customers. We are planning a dinner event where Mr. McCarthy and myself will team up to walk you through the world of fruit based brandies and liqueurs. I'm sure some of you whisky fans out there are thinking, "Eh." That's what some of my staff members also said to me when I told them Steve was in the bar, but I twisted their arm and they made sure to taste through. They immediately found me after and told me how happy they were that I had forced them to do so. While we all love whisky, Clear Creek is in a class all its own. They taste of purity, elegance, and quality - something any spirit lover should enjoy.