Texas Bourbon News

Texas Born from Texas Corn

Archive for the 'Spring 2010 Newsletter' Category

Garrison Brothers Cowboy Bourbon ranked as one of the best whiskeys


Gb-1134 Flagship Single Barrel and Cowboy Rustic

Made in the Hill Country, Garrison Brothers’ Cowboy Bourbon — a hard-to-find whiskey that sent Garrison fans into a frenzy last year over its release — might be more than just hype.

For a second year, a revered whiskey critic has given it the U.S. Micro Whisky of the Year Award in his “Whisky Bible 2017.” The whiskey-loving expert, Jim Murray, releases a book every year announcing what he believes are the best whiskeys in the world (or whiskies, depending on which kind), giving each one a score. The Garrison Brothers bourbon received the distinction of a 96.5, out of a possible 100, in the American Whiskey category.

That’s a small improvement from two years ago, when Murray gave the 2013 version of the Cowboy Bourbon a 96. This year, he also listed the Cowboy Bourbon as the best bourbon nine years and under.

“Four years in Texas evidently equate to 23 in Kentucky: there’s a geography lesson for you,” according to Murray. “Whiskeys from this distillery have absolutely delighted and astonished me in the past: this proves, indubitably, it was no fluke. If you didn’t think Texas was on the world map of Great Whisky, it is now.”
The Cowboy Bourbon is made just as Garrison Brothers’ flagship is: with organic Panhandle corn, soft red winter wheat grown at the distillery, two-row malted barley and Hill Country rainwater. But unlike the flagship, the 2015 Cowboy Bourbon was aged for four years and left at barrel-proof, unfiltered and uncut. If you’ve been able to get your hands on a bottle, treasure it.

Murray’s “Whisky Bible” features tasting notes from more than 4,600 whiskeys from all over the world. He named Booker’s Rye 13-Year-Old, from Kentucky, as the World Whisky of the Year.

Read the article and the comments.

posted by admin in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have Comment (1)

Dinner in The Barrel Barn with Chef Jon Bonnell


What: A Once In A Lifetime Culinary Experience

Where: Garrison Brothers Barrel Barn

When: Saturday, April 12, 2014

Why: Benefitting the Hye Preservation Society

Cost: $175 per plate or $1,000 for a table of 6

Reservations: www.stillhouseseries.com


It is my great honor to announce that legendary Fort Worth Chef Jon Bonnell will be cooking us dinner in the Barrel Barn at Garrison Brothers Distillery on Saturday evening, April 12. Wines will be paired with each course by master vintner Chris Brundrett of William Chris Vineyards.

Chef Bonnell has been a friend since we were first introduced by Old 300 Member Matt Rainwater back in 2009. Bonnell’s Fine Texas Cuisine was the first restaurant in Fort Worth to serve Garrison Brothers and he has been a great supporter ever since. You will find a bottle of The Cowboy behind his bar. Today, he is also serving great bourbons at Waters Bonnell’s Coastal Cuisine in Fort Worth, which opened to rave reviews last year. He is a hands-on chef. I make it a point to visit his restaurants when I’m in Fort Worth; he has never not been there.

Only 50 seats remain available. Reservations are $175 per plate or $1,000 for a table of 6 and a significant percentage of the proceeds will be donated to the Hye Preservation Society. Reservations can be made here: www.stillhouseseries.com

The good Lord has promised clear skies and a majestic view of the Milky Way. We look forward to seeing everyone there. Please join us and find out why this man is considered “The Most Loved Chef in Fort Worth.”

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have No Comments

Sipping and Signing, Again

With Easter behind us, and Mother’s and Father’s Day right around the corner, it seemed a good time to arrange a few “sit and sips” for those of ya’ll who might want to give out bottles of Garrison Brothers to your favorite bourbon drinker.

Here’s where I’m headed in the next few weeks. I hope you’ll stop by and say hello.

  • Saturday, April 14 from 2 to 4 – The Houston Wine Merchant: Looking forward to a little time with Everett and his knowledgeable gang at this outstanding liquor store at 2646 South Shepherd.
  • Friday, April 20 from 6 to 8 – Bourbon Tasting at Rye 51 in Houston (reservations required): If you have not visited Rye 51, come to this event. David and his gang have amazing clothes. If I had a real job, and gave a crap how I look, this is where I’d shop. We’ll be talking bourbon and comparing wheats and ryes. To RSVP, please email David at david@qcustomclothier.com.
  • Friday, April 20 from 8:30 to 9:30 – Downing Street Pub in Houston: Please join me and CJ at Houston’s most prestigious whiskey pub and cigar lounge. We’ll be pouring Garrison Brothers and discussing why bourbon is far superior to scotch. That ought to piss somebody off.
  • Sunday, April 22 from 7 to 9 – Married With Dishes Viewing Party at The Auslander in Fredericksburg: Anthony Bourdain’s production company, Zero Point Zero Productions, is launching a new television series called Married With Dishes, which was filmed all over Fredericksburg.  The outrageous, climactic dinner was shot in the Barrel Barn at Garrison Brothers Distillery. It will air on the Cooking Channel. This should be one hilarious evening. Hope you’ll join us.
  • Tuesday, April 24 from 7:30 to 9:30 – Hyatt Lost Pines in Bastrop (invitation-only event): Private bourbon dinner with Chef Neil Joiner.
  • Thursday, April 26 from 5 to 6 – Strip House in Downtown Houston: Please join us for a Bourbon Happy Hour organized by our friends at Strip House. I understand Chef Mario Vidal may be providing appetizers that pair nicely with fine straight bourbon.
  • Wednesday, May 2 from 4 to 6 – J Black’s in Austin: That afternoon I’ll have the pleasure of telling the staff at J Black’s about how best to serve and enjoy Garrison Brothers Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Afterward I’m buying drinks (well, a few anyway). Hope you’ll stop by.


Finally, I just want to say thanks to all of you who, like I am, are enjoying a bottle of Garrison Brothers right now. It appears you guys are buying about a hundred cases a week, which is crazy, but it makes us damn proud.

Thank you!


posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have Comments (23)

Sittin and Sippin at Drink Local Night and Joe Saglimbeni’s

Folks, tonight is DRINK LOCAL NIGHT in Austin. Garrison Brothers Distillery will be providing tastings of our finest straight bourbon yet and we’ll have incredible bourbon filled choclates from Lecia Duke’s CHOCOLAT in Fredericksburg.

Meet your local distillers and try seasonal cocktails highlighting their spirits at the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center Ballroom. Featuring the Official Drink of Austin Cocktail Contest presented by Tipsy Texan. Crowd Favorite Award sponsored by Google Places. Tasty appetizers by Swift’s Attic, BC Tavern, The Carillon and Lick Ice Creams! 6:30-9:30 pm. All for a very good cause. You can get tickets here: http://www.edibleaustin.com/content/buy-tickets-now

On Saturday, December 17, I will have the great pleasure of visiting with the fine folks at Joe Saglimbeni’s Fine Wine at 638 West Rhapsody in San Antonio. If you’re like me, and visiting a liquor store is as exciting as as entering a hardware store, you will LOVE Joe Saglimbeni’s. Friendly, knowledgeable staff, great customers and you’re surrounded by an amazing selection of spirits and fine wine. I’ll be there sampling Garrison Brothers Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey from noon until 3.

Did I mention a case of Garrison Brothers Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey makes  one hell of a Christmas gift? If you buy a bottle as a gift, I’m delighted to write a personal note on the back. Please come visit.

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have Comments (4)

Talking and Tasting at The University of Texas

UT Campus ClubIf you’re in Austin this Thursday evening, and are looking for something to do that’s a little out of the ordinary, please join me at the University of Texas.

The UT Campus Club is hosting a bourbon tasting and discussion at 6 p.m. at The Carillon Restaurant in the AT&T Executive Conference Center. I promise this won’t just be about Garrison Brothers Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey.

We’ll discuss the history of bourbon whiskey in America; how fine straight bourbon is made; how we make ours at Garrison Brothers Distillery; proper techniques for nosing and tasting bourbon; and we’ll offer a comparative tasting of fine ryes and wheated bourbons.

Non-member tickets are $40 plus gratuity. Reserve your space by emailing morgan.jones@austin.utexas.edu or you can call Morgan at 512.471.8611.

Here’s a link to their poster advertising the event: http://utexas.dmplocal.com/main/index.php?action=viewsenthtml&id=2891&ids=ee19ee86488c8826f2f916f81fed4e866be93843

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have No Comments

Cowboy’d Up, Again

Once again, our fellow Texans have demonstrated why this is the greatest country in America. Less than 48 hours after soliciting bottling volunteers, we had more than 100 brave souls step across that line in the sand.

If you’ve emailed Laurel already to volunteer, please trust that she is sifting through your emails — first come, first served — as fast as she can. We needed about 30 folks to help out and received many more offers than we can possibly fill. Please trust that Laurel will get back to you soon and let you know if we were able to work you in or not.

Anyone who does not get a bottling slot this time will be moved to the front of the list for the next bottling effort in February.

Thanks so much for your willingness to help out. We couldn’t do this without you.

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have Comments (2)

Want To Help Bottle Some Bourbon?

Want to try something no one in Texas has ever done before? Medals

Next month, we’ll start bottling our largest bourbon release ever – more than 120 barrels of our straight bourbon will be emptied into stainless steel tanks, married with crisp, clean rainwater, proofed and entered into bottles. Each hand-numbered and signed bottle is sealed with a cork, wrapped in deerskin lace, and then dipped in hot wax. These bottles will be sold throughout the Hill Country and a few hundred cases will make it to fine liquor stores, bars and restaurants in the big cities. (We can’t say where just yet.)

We thought a few of you might like to come out to Hye and give us a hand.

A word of warning: Bottling at Garrison Brothers is not for the faint of heart! It means hard work, attention to detail, reliable, consistent help, and above all else, patience. Every finished bottle has to get past Inspector Number 1 — me. This video from our talented friends Rob Cordes and Jim Walters will give you an idea what to expect:


We’ll be bottling from 8 am to 5 pm, Monday thru Friday, the weeks of September 26, October 3, October 10, October 17 and October 24. We may finish early and may not need to continue that last week. 

We need 7 people each day and already have about 70 sensational volunteers already. We provide meals, beverages and plenty of bourbon throughout the day. (In fact, tradition holds that we periodically celebrate with a little “quality control” sample to keep us all motivated.)

If you’d like to take part, it will take you a couple of hours to learn the craft, so we ask those who participate to commit to two full days, 8-5. At the end of your shift, we’ll reward you with your own bottle to take home with you, along with a few other thank you gifts.

If you can handle your own travel and lodging arrangements, and commit to giving us two days hard work, please send an email to Laurel Hoekstra, our Bottling Queen, at laurel@garrisonbros.com and give her your contact information. She’ll let you know what days are still open. The deadline for contacting her is Sunday, September 12, so that we can invite others to fill any remaining slots.

Please don’t delay your decision too long though; last time we did this, we were cowboy’d up in less than 24 hours.

Hope to see you in Hye.

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have Comments (14)

Whiskey and Rain

Don’t know about ya’ll but I’m parched. The Hill Country is drier than hell on a hot day. Ashamed TV weather reporters are hiding out like Al Quaeda terrorists. And I’m too poor to pack it all up and go to Colorado like those Escalade-driving-sons-of-bitches I keep seeing on the highway.

Fortunately, there’s a little Garrison Brothers bourbon down here to help wash away the dust. There are a few bottles of the Spring 2011 release remaining at scattered stores in San Antonio and the Hill Country. A few store owners have offered to let me come in and sign bottles for customers.

Signing Bottles

Signing Bottles

If you’re buying a bottle as a gift for someone special, please come see me and I’ll write a little personal note on the back. Here’s my schedule:

  • Judy’s Liquors in Fredericksburg – Friday, July 15, 4 to 5:30
  • Spec’s Wine and Spirits (I-35 and Loop 1604 in Live Oak/north of San Antonio) – Saturday, July 16, 2 to 5:00
  • Hill Country Liquors in Blanco – Friday, July 22, 4 to 5:30


If you are a liquor store owner or manager, please don’t hesitate to call me so we can schedule one of these. Love meeting ya’ll and swapping stories.

Oh, and God, please send us some rain. We’ve been real patient. We’d sure appreciate it. I can promise I’ll be out dancing in it … wearing nothing but my boots.

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have Comments (11)

As American as Bourbon Peach Pie

If you’re headed to the Hill Country this weekend, you’re in for a treat — perhaps the greatest display of pure, unadulterated country-Americana one can witness in a lifetime.

The 50th Annual Peach Jamboree, Parade and Rodeo is Thursday, Friday and Saturday. There’s a rodeo and dance each night. The Peach Parade meanders through town Saturday morning at 10. Locals here really know how to dress up a tractor. Garrison Brothers will have a float in the parade and we’re sponsoring the Barrel Races at the rodeo.

If this all sounds hokey as hell to you, well, it is. And we love it!

You can learn more about everything going on and buy event tickets at http://www.stonewalltexas.com/

Immediately after the parade, at 12:30, everybody is invited back to Garrison Brothers Distillery for a fried chicken lunch in our barrel barn. Come early though because we’ll probably run out of chicken, and lunch is first come, first-served.

We have Charlie Montague and his band playing off the back porch. If you’ve never seen this guy, prepare yourself. There are unsubstantiated reports that respectable young women take their bras off and throw them on stage when he plays in Luckenbach. He rocks!

If you’re going to join us for lunch, please RSVP at our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/event.php?eid=231415296872385 

The lunch is BYOB and we’ll be asking for $5 a person. We will donate 100% of the chicken dinner proceeds to The Hye Preservation Society.

We hope to see ya’ll there.

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have Comments (2)

Bourbon 101 at Ten Oak

If you’re in Austin this Wednesday evening and you’re thirsty, please join me at Ten Oak at 409 Colorado from 6:30 to 8:30. We’ll be talking bourbon…as if there’s really anything else to talk about.

I’ll discuss how Garrison Brothers came to be; how we make our bourbon in Hye; nosing and tasting; and we’ll conclude with a tasting, discussion and Q&A.

If we’re lucky Orion might treat us to his bourbon bacon milkshakes, but I doubt it. Hope you can join us.

posted by Dan Garrison in Spring 2010 Newsletter and have No Comments