PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sat Jul 11, 2015 12:00 pm

Good deal Coyote and Bear :thumbup:
I'm sitting here going over the route home with my wife, She refuses to take the freeway or the Viaduct so Bigbob is in for a real adventure and scenic tour of downtown Seattle :D
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sat Jul 11, 2015 12:07 pm

Because we always take the scenic route I'm going to log off and head towards Fremont. Hope to see you there, My wife and I bear a striking resemblance to a gnome couple and I will be wearing my S3 T-shirt. Looking forward to seeing you all there.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby bearriver » Sat Jul 11, 2015 12:32 pm

Indeed. I'm finishing up getting ready and will leave here shortly. See y'all there.

Long braided dark hair and a short beard. Skinny, tall, in a S3 shirt. At least I know what Odin and Cranky look like.

The wife just got home with a 18 pound brisket for tomorrow, among other things...
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Bigbob » Sat Jul 11, 2015 12:50 pm

Just got to my hotel, gonna give the ribs a rub.(that didn't sound right) bear is picking me up at 3:45 for proof. Cranky, your wife can drive any way she wants to, I've havnt been in Seattle in a long long time. RedRim and Coyote, glad to hear your making it up! We will see ya at the BBQ! Redrim, you wearing your kilt too?
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Grappa-Gringo » Sat Jul 11, 2015 3:56 pm

I am so envious of you guys and gals heading to this shin-dig and the bar b que... I'm heading out to the Maritimes for a holiday with the family tomorrow, so today was a "stay at home" day to get organized.
Bushman, you and Odin sounded like you had a great time... I'll head down your way when I get back...hopefully check out your son's place... and I'll bring some Cuban's with me....!!
Hope you guys have a great time....
cheers

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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sat Jul 11, 2015 8:53 pm

I just got back from the Proof. It was a nice experience, although I feel it was poorly run. I very much enjoyed meeting everyone and talking and hearing the stories although I don't handle crowds well and am socially inept I enjoyed it and look forward to seeing everybody who will be at bears tomorrow. One thing I took away is that there is nothing being made that I am not capable of making myself only better. I tasted a lot of not bad but not exceptional and plenty of not good booze tonight. Some of the food was real good but I almost lost a few fingers trying to get a slider and now I already have the headache I have learned goes with heads. I left a bit early because MRS Cranky was beginning to earn her name and I was getting very tired because it was already past my bedtime and my left heel was acting up from all the walking and standing. I don't know what I did to it although my wife pulled a big imbedded thorn out of it a couple weeks ago and maybe there is another. Anyway Time for me to call it a night.

To those of you not able to make it we will be thinking of you. For those of you who can make it I look forward to seeing you at the
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Bigbob » Sat Jul 11, 2015 10:04 pm

Giving my post proof report. Crankys right, the best thing I drank at proof was HDNB's whisky! All the "professional " stillers seem to place profit over pride. Lots of heads and tails, some product was ok, but nothing outstanding. Afterwards, bearriver, bushman, Odin, HDNB and I went over to a brew pub and had a few, got to know one another and had a good time. Tommorow the BBQ! Looking forward to it! Cranky, I like that design. Will shirts be made? :thumbup:
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby bearriver » Sat Jul 11, 2015 10:46 pm

That's an awesome image Cranky! You did an great job.

My report on PROOF: HDNB had the best whiskey in the house hands down. :clap:

As a whole the commercial offerings disappointed me. It was sad to see most of 40 local craft distilleries advertising their low quality spirits. There was a few good products, but the whiskeys were all total duds... Well... Bainbridge was okay. I had issues with the cuts on most everything else that I tasted there. It was disconcerting to see how far craft distilling still needs to go on a commercial level, especially in a state like Washington.

I had to tip a few into the trashcan. I can swallow some bad booze to be polite, but there was stuff there that could shame an entire family name. :sick:

(Takes off the ranty pants)

It was an enjoyable event however and was worth it. The food and a few flavored drinks were fantastic. HDNB and I both had a kid roll us cigars, and we got some very nice sticks. Wasnt cheap though... Beer afterwards with Bigbob, HDNB, Bushman, and Odin was my favorite part. They are all very vibrant people. I feel the bbq tomorrow will be even better.

Got 2 fingers of HDNB's fantastic whiskey and a cool breeze to finish the day. Sublime. He gave us some COB with enough 2 row to do the conversion. 7 months on oak later and its very tasty. 8)
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Red Rim » Sun Jul 12, 2015 1:58 am

Could you use a little halibut at that BBQ? I will head out in the morning. Could you send me directions Bear?
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby S-Cackalacky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 5:15 am

Glad to hear everyone is having a good time. Just an observation about the quality of most of the offerings at Proof - can the low quality be traced back to how the government involves itself in the process? Liquor is one of the few commodities that is taxed at the production level. This is the primary disincentive for quality. By keeping their boot on the neck of the industry by taxing every drop produced, it's no wonder that there's little of it of decent quality. As long as the crap along with the good is being taxed, there will never be any incentive to do otherwise. It's a no-win situation for the distillery. They can produce good quality liquor and be priced out of the market, or they can produce swill and try their best to BS the public into thinking it's quality. But, it's easy to understand that the government's greed for more and more tax money will never change and so, the problem is perpetuated.

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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 6:31 am

I also did a lot of people watching and one booth was particularly memorable. It was Heritage from Gig Harbor. People were ranting and raving about it, especially the coffee infused vodka. I wasn't particularly impressed by any vodka there and the coffee infused just tasted like a little coffee was poured into the vodka to give it a very slight color and very light coffee flavor. My sample even had coffee grounds in it. I thought there was nothing whatsoever remarkable about it but people were flocking to that booth and paying $26-$38 a bottle and thinking it was wonderful. I think we distilling snobs expect a better product if we are willing to pay extra for it but the general public either doesn't know or doesn't care or both. I saw a lot of bottles being sold last night so it was a good night for all the distilleries and maybe that's a good thing. Maybe this sort of thing actually helps legalization efforts. One booth I tried some gin at the distiller told me he is a 3rd generation distiller, don't know if that is true or not because that sort of thing makes a good story so it seems to be pretty common to say. However anybody can then put together that the 1st 2 generations didn't do it legally and can see that it was still safe to do which helps sway public opinion. As far as the gin, it tasted pretty much identical to the easy gin I made last February. To me not worth paying for, the general public is another story.

On a side note early in the evening my wife (yes the designated driver :roll: ) tried a very small sample of a rum. Her comments about it were that it tasted like it had just come off the still and was immediately bottled with a drop of vanilla extract and not allowed to air out or age, like it was rushed to market and had too much heads and tails. Seems to me even when they aren't helping with the hobby the people we share our products with are also becoming distilling snobs :ebiggrin:
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby MichiganCornhusker » Sun Jul 12, 2015 6:59 am

S-Cackalacky wrote: it's no wonder that there's little of it of decent quality. As long as the crap along with the good is being taxed, there will never be any incentive to do otherwise.

I hear what you're saying, it is definitely an incentive to pour in all the heads and tails to recoup as much as you can.
It is disheartening to hear that there aren't more tasty spirit reports coming out of Proof. I had hoped to hear that folks were starting to step up and make a better drop.
It has been my experience that many craft offerings I've tasted have been disappointing, some with too much heads, and some just undrinkable.

I still believe this will change. There are places making good spirits, this is still a very young market. It will take time for consumers to develop their palates for spirits the same way the evolved for the craft beer market.
We are definitely spirits snobs. We spend so much time tasting, analyzing, critiquing, reworking, that we can't help but be very focused on the quality of what we are making. We are lightyears ahead of the typical consumer that still thinks of booze as just booze. But as people taste more, buy more, explore more, they will start to come around. And all of these new distilleries are driving this new adventure for people, and that is a good thing for all of us. I think the more people start to respect the micro-distiller, that respect will start to come to the nano-distiller, and the home distiller.

Thanks for the update, guys, just about time to wake up out there and git that BBQ going!
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Bushman » Sun Jul 12, 2015 7:25 am

Everybody has a different take on this, for me I recognized some of the vendors at proof as just getting started and trying to get exposure early on (maybe a bit too early). Prior to the start of Proof Odin and I attended Westland Distilleries (the largest producers of single malt whiskey in North America). Both of us thought their signiture whiskey was good, later at Proof Odin tasted one of their other whiskeys and said he wasn't as happy with it. Pacific Distilleries that makes mainly gin and absinthe I thought was also good. I have always liked his absinthe! I wish I had gotten around to taste some of the others, but last night I was driving and didn't want to take the chance in downtown Seattle. I am glad I got a chance to meet some of the members and am looking forward to meeting others that did not make it to Proof but will be at the BBQ. This morning I am going to take Odin to see the famous Pike Place Market and probably a couple scenic places that you can view Seattle as it is a beautiful city before driving to the BBQ.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 7:46 am

MichiganCornhusker wrote: just about time to wake up out there and git that BBQ going!

Yes it is MCH but I think everybody had a pretty late night. I was up til midnight trying to take care of some last minute things so I slept in, woke up at 6 :D I'm about to get out of bed and finish loading the car to head over to Bears.

A little more about proof,
One of the other things I noticed was very little variety, Most booths had pretty much the same things, vodka, whiskey and "moonshine". I've already made my opinion known on "moonshine" so I wont go there and didn't go to any booths that had it. Vodka, who really cares, for the most part vodka is vodka is vodka nothing special. Seems like the best most of them could come up with was some sort of flavored vodka, not really a lot of creativity. There is a little more variety for whiskey but really it's a pretty saturated market and to me doesn't vary in flavor much. There were some gins but in Wa some of the distilleries get a little overzealous with the ingredients but at least they are trying. I tried one gin that was "aged" in used bourbon barrels. I wasn't impressed. If I want bourbon I'll drink bourbon not gin. I may have missed it but I didn't see a single bottle of brandy. I would have really liked to try someone els's Eau de Vie or oaked brandy, I know there are some distilleries doing it but they didn't seem to be represented last night. At least if there were I missed them. It would have been easy to miss because the booths were poorly laid out and didn't have very good signage. A map would have really been handy showing where each distillery's booth was and their offerings with maybe some space to make notes. There were a few who tried, a couple of absinths, a couple of panty droppers but really I saw little innovation or variety. Maybe it's just me, maybe I missed something.

All that said I enjoyed the experience. I liked trying different products to compare to what I or other members are capable of without spending 30-50 a bottle. I think if I return in the future I will get the VIP for early admission, try whatever I want, have some decent food and leave shortly after the general admission begins because once they opened the flood gates it was difficult to nearly impossible to get to any of the booths to try anything and getting a slider was like wading into a pool of piranha.

The best part of the evening was standing around BSing with the other members and as Bear said the best alcohol there was the stuff brought by HDNB

Note: Posting same time as Bushman
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 8:37 am

Bigbob wrote:Cranky, I like that design. Will shirts be made? :thumbup:

If I had bought that silk screening equipment a while back the answer would have been yes but I didn't so if shirts will be made it will have to be in the future. I was just playing around on the computer late Friday night and made that. That's not to say you may not see that again in the near future.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby S-Cackalacky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 9:12 am

MichiganCornhusker wrote:
S-Cackalacky wrote: it's no wonder that there's little of it of decent quality. As long as the crap along with the good is being taxed, there will never be any incentive to do otherwise.

I hear what you're saying, it is definitely an incentive to pour in all the heads and tails to recoup as much as you can.
It is disheartening to hear that there aren't more tasty spirit reports coming out of Proof. I had hoped to hear that folks were starting to step up and make a better drop.
It has been my experience that many craft offerings I've tasted have been disappointing, some with too much heads, and some just undrinkable.

I still believe this will change. There are places making good spirits, this is still a very young market. It will take time for consumers to develop their palates for spirits the same way the evolved for the craft beer market.
We are definitely spirits snobs. We spend so much time tasting, analyzing, critiquing, reworking, that we can't help but be very focused on the quality of what we are making. We are lightyears ahead of the typical consumer that still thinks of booze as just booze. But as people taste more, buy more, explore more, they will start to come around. And all of these new distilleries are driving this new adventure for people, and that is a good thing for all of us. I think the more people start to respect the micro-distiller, that respect will start to come to the nano-distiller, and the home distiller.

Thanks for the update, guys, just about time to wake up out there and git that BBQ going!

MCH, I hope you're right about that. I just fear that with the current taxing methods, a good drop will be priced beyond the means of the average person. Maybe I'm wrong and I hope I am. It could be that once the public recognizes that a good drop can be produced, they'll demand better and the big boys will have to comply to maintain market share. But, I have my doubts - if the government continues to make them pay to produce crap, they'll continue to pass the crap along to the public to recoup their losses.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Grappa-Gringo » Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:00 am

reading over the reports, I wonder if this is going to be an annual "go to" event or what? Was Deception Pass Distillery there? I had tasted their Apple Pie moonshine and thought it was good...I made some at home, and my wife (who is not a drinker) thought mine was better.... I think from reading the results of this Proof, that quality was an issue. I would have thought they (the distillers') would have put their best product on the line.
It will be on my list of "things to do" next year... sorry to have missed it.
Have a great bar-b-que

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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:10 am

I don't recall seeing Deception Pass but it was rather difficult to see names until you were right up to the booth. My wife and I are discussing returning next year because it actually was enjoyable before it got far too crowded. I liked sampling the pros work even if I feel it is inferior to my own and what other members produce, although I might find out otherwise this afternoon but honest critiquing will help us all make a better drop and we actually only make it to our own tastes. It actually gives me the belief that myself or any other member could succeed opening their own distillery.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby woodshed » Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:12 am

Indeed.
Maybe someday cranky you will try a shine that might change your mind about them.

You all are in for a treat as I see Bigbob will be rubbin his ribs :wink: 8)
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:51 am

woodshed wrote:Indeed.
Maybe someday cranky you will try a shine that might change your mind about them.

Sorry Shed, don't want to go there but I stand my ground when I say there ain't no such thing as legal moonshine.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby woodshed » Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:52 am

Fair enough cranky. Some pretty good shine being made out there though.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby rad14701 » Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:58 am

It is unfortunate that so many craft distilleries were presenting such inferior product... However, and also unfortunately, most of the general public probably don't know the difference are of the opinion that those perhaps seemingly "authentic" spirits are supposed to taste the way they do... And if the craft distillers are profiting from that train of thought there is little incentive for them to improve their offerings at the expense of profit margin... This could be one major defining factor between craft and long time commercial distilleries... Either you're willing and able to take the financial hit or you aren't...

And as for legal moonshine, it would be better if the legal distilling industry would adopt a standardized term like "white whiskey" or "white dog" or "un-aged spirits" rather than to use the term "moonshine"...
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby likker liker » Sun Jul 12, 2015 12:17 pm

I wished that the wife and I could have been there but then theirs a big racing event and a car that I built is in the running for cash, I need to be there. Next year no excuses we will go hell or high water.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby woodshed » Sun Jul 12, 2015 12:59 pm

If possible, even the dead horse is tired of that whole debate.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Coyote » Sun Jul 12, 2015 1:17 pm

Sorry to be missing the BBQ, but duty calls as the lighting strikes are
Near, fast and lots of them.

Enjoy ya all

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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby Bigbob » Sun Jul 12, 2015 3:49 pm

Sitting on bearrivers porch enjoying the sunshine and company. The spirits are good and the food also. Quite a sampleling of spirits here. From sweet feed to walnut brandy, gin to front loops! It can get very hard to compare the different types. So far I'm enjoying the walnut brandy that MCH sent in spirit and the blackberry brandy cranky made. In whiskys bushmans all grain is very good and what can I say that hasn't already been said about GA's Muckalee Creek? In all a fun weekend with some great people. Wish I could do this for a living! :clap: :clap: :clap: :thumbup:
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby woodshed » Sun Jul 12, 2015 3:51 pm

Enjoying Windy's Breakfast Bourbon while grilling 1 inch thick Ahi steaks on the grill in honor of the Bearriver meeting.
SOH is sippin on varocketry's UJ.

Ya'll keep us posted. Lot's of members out here who are wishing we were standing around the grill with you all.
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby MichiganCornhusker » Sun Jul 12, 2015 3:57 pm

woodshed wrote:Ya'll keep us posted. Lot's of members out here who are wishing we were standing around the grill with you all.

+1
Now I know how it feels to have my nose pressed up against the window looking in from afar!
Sounds like a good time. One of the nice things about Woodshed's was that most of the table was whiskey. I can imagine it being difficult to veer from 2 week old walnut brandy to nicely aged whiskey.
Cheers, all, enjoy your day! :wave:
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby cranky » Sun Jul 12, 2015 5:51 pm

woodshed wrote:If possible, even the dead horse is tired of that whole debate.

I said I didn't want to go there :moresarcasm:
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Re: PNW Meetup 2015 (Proof)

Postby ga flatwoods » Sun Jul 12, 2015 6:00 pm

cranky wrote:
woodshed wrote:If possible, even the dead horse is tired of that whole debate.

I said I didn't want to go there :moresarcasm:

Stop ya drama and have a drink of Blackbeard's Treasure already Cranky!
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