On June 7, Jefferson’s Bourbon of Louisville re-launched an old time tradition. They loaded up two barrels of their bourbon on a boat, and sent them down the middle of America, and up the Atlantic Ocean. Trey Zoeller, the founder of Jefferson’s Bourbon, will land in New Orleans with his Bourbon in early August to celebrate the arrival, and will be joined by native New Orleanian Chef John Besh.
Jefferson’s Bourbon has been in business since 1997, and to this day they’re still experimenting with bourbons that they hand select, and making concoctions of their own.
The event has a very specific purpose: to gauge the variety of ways in which bourbon matures when on water, instead of aging on land.
Zoeller says that with the bourbon constantly sloshing around the barrels, the consistent contact with the wood will expedite the aging process and change the flavor and texture.
In theory, the motions of the boat and the sea water air will add a certain texture and taste to the bourbon, that will vary greatly from the taste and texture that it soaks up when aging on land.
After arriving in New Orleans, the bourbon will float to Key West, and will then be loaded on a sailboat to travel up the Atlantic to the end of its journey in New York City.