At a dinner recently with special guests Jimmy and Joretta Russell, above, we were discussing flavor profiles of bourbon. “I use simple terms,” Jimmy said, noting the vanilla and caramel notes in Russell’s Reserve 10. And then he told a funny story.
It seems that he and fellow legend Elmer T. Lee of Buffalo Trace were at a tasting event once. They sat there listening to the speaker rhapsodize about the flavors in whiskey: dried fruits, chocolate, pepper, leather, “Elmer leaned over to me,” Jimmy said, “and asked, ‘You ever put any of that shit in your bourbon?’”