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Podcast #3 - Compass Box's John Glaser

Our originally scheduled podcast #1 finally happens!  John Glaser sits down with me and discusses the art of the blend, grain whisky as a white canvass, and vatting as a trend for 2011.  It was a wonderful conversation and I am really looking forward to visiting his laboratory in London this summer. 

Download the podcast here (remember to right click for PC users, or hold down "option" if you have a mac).

The podcast is also available in subscription form on iTunes.

Or you can listen here via our embedded Flash player.

Reader Comments (5)

David, that's absolutely the most in depth and best interview with what I consider to be the most interesting man in the whiskey industry. John was extremely transparent talking with you. I found myself understanding even further why Compass Box is so highly acclaimed. His philosophy of just creating "great stuff" as he puts it really comes through. I also liked the portion of the interview about the US whiskey industry and perhaps some of the issues some "blenders" are having with public opinion in this country. With those nuggets you realize how more sophisticated and forward the whiskey industry is in Europe. I cannot wait to see John take on the perception of blended scotch. Should be fun.

John also mentioned a point that I've tried making that garnered a lot of snickers from the "old guard" on a prominent bourbon forum. In mentioning Glenmorangie Singnet he talked about how Rachel Barrie is blending (vatting, but let's not get technical) varied ages and barrels of her own stock. In essence "blending" within her own walls. There is one US distillery doing something similar - Four Roses.

I know you will be spending some time with Jim Rutledge in the coming week or so with your event out there. Might be a good idea to talk to him about his ideas of this concept. Jim's worked hard to move Four Roses away from their past (blending with neutral spirit), so he might shudder at the thought of calling it as such, but I believe that's what he's doing. And it's one of the reasons I admire his distillery so much. 10 recipes to blend/vatt to get a desired flavor. Imagine the possibilities. I hope we're heading that way in this country. I fortunately get to spend some time with Jim in the next 3 weeks as well with an onsite visit to Four Roses. I plan on talking to him about the same.

Thanks David for the great podcast. An hour extremely well spent!

January 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJason Pyle

Great interview! This is really a great series David. You're doing a phenomenal job with these. I was holding out on the Double Single, but I may just have to pull the trigger on one after hearing you and John talk about it.

January 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commentersku

Thanks guys. I'm happy people are enjoying it. I certainly am.

January 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDavid D

wow. so cool. here's somebody who has tons of things to say. comforts me in why i own spice tree, hedonism and soon flaming heart. clearly amazing podcast. re-listening to it IS on my to-do list.

January 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNP

A home run interview Dave. I've been a fan of Compass Box for almost the entire decade that John Glaser's been in business, but I learned more in the last hour of the podcast than I have in the last 10 years. But this contradicts your "death of brand loyalty" post. I'm ready to try anything John Glaser's ready to blend or should I say make (a nice point on that).

January 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSamuel Muindi

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