We have a very special episode this week! Wes, owner of Rebellion and Jay, owner of The Brooklyn Arts Center, joins us to introduce the ILM Downtown Brown Collab. ILM Downtown Brown is a collaboration between some of the best whiskey spots downtown come together to choose their favorite whiskey barrel to bring to Wilmington. We talk a lot about whiskey, the community downtown, whiskey selection process and the wisdom that Wes and Jay have picked up along the way.
But maybe most importantly, don't hesitate to make your own Pub Shed in your backyard!
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Whiskey & Wisdom: @whiskey.and.wisdom
Chris Kellum: @ctkellum
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Tyler Yaw: @tyler_yaw_
LinkedIn: Tyler Yaw
Welcome back to Whiskey and Wisdom. And this week not only do I have my co-host Chris Kellum, but I also have on Wes from Rebellion and Jay Tatum from the Brooklyn Arts Center. And the reason why we have both of these guys on today is there is a collaboration between some of the best downtown whiskey collectors. So Rebellion Brooklyn Art Center, and what were the other Front Street Brewery Manana slash Ernest money. And Jam and Draft. That's right. Yeah. I forgot about German and draft down there. So all the best places to get your whiskey downtown have all gotten together and have created what is this bottle of whiskey that we have in front of us right now? So this is Southern Star from Southern Distilling Paragon. It's cash strength whiskey, so right outta the barrel. It's a four year old weeded bourbon. What we, when this one got bottled, this was at 113.5 proof. Wow. Yeah. And the, and the group has put together, they have a collaborative, it's called the Im Downtown Brown. It's actually cool little name and everything. So if you ever see some whiskey collections with that stamp, you know that these guys all went in and had a really good selection process. Let's try this one. We have right in front of us. Cheers. Cheers. Cheers. Wow. That's very smooth. Very pleasantly surprised. Perfect. That's very good. Like it, Yeah. Way more flavor than I expected. Yeah, it's a lot. And it'll open up too. Yeah, they have a little water in it. Really open up. And kind of what we were talking about before we started the podcast is North Carolina doesn't necessarily have the. the name for whiskey, I guess you could say, but this is definitely the best that I've had. It hands down. Yeah. Like, I mean, there's, there's some good products coming out in the whiskey, but I, I feel like this one is like the best. Yeah. Even, and you know, they, they say that this is their, their crown jewel of, of their lineup and the award they just got kind of not, you know, an odd to that. Mm-hmm. Oh, nice. So how'd you guys find this distillery and decide to go with them? The rep, real nice guy named Paul, Paul Ply. He, he came into rebellion a couple times and every time they would have like a new release of something, he'd bring it by for us to taste on. And we just were, you know, BSing one day. Yeah. And he said if you guys ever wanna come out to the distillery and choose your own barrel. And I had run into Josh Cranford, who's the GM over at Front Street. Mm-hmm. at, at the half Grabb. A little sandwich there. Yeah. And we just started talking about maybe one day splitting, splitting some barrels, and then it just kind of took a life of its own. I mentioned something to Jay and he was like, I'd love to get in on that. Yeah. And then it went from there. So, Very neat. And I know we're at the Brooklyn Arts Center. We're not known as a bar per se, but Right. During Covid we built, or slightly before Covid, we built Okay. Our bell tower tasting room. Okay. Which is located, you know, the church had built in 1888 second floor of the balcony area was the original Bell Tower. So we started putting together basically a whiskey collection ourselves. Yeah. So we, we have about, I mean really, we probably have a couple hundred balls on the hand. We can only keep about a hundred right up in the Bell Tower. Mm-hmm. and and Wes and I had met, you know, and then he was part of our bourbon club and stuff like that. And we just shoot the crap outside of this whole thing and. He pitched it to me. So like, like we're not a bar all the time, but like Right. They're definitely gonna sell more of this than we will, but but that's how we got involved and, and we're, you know, we we're also gonna be neighbors cuz they'll have a new spot in the Brooklyn district as well. Oh. Oh wow. What's that gonna be? The Commodor. Okay. If it ever get its open. It's been it's been a challenge between Covid and, you know, staffing issues. Right. And around town and the supply chain issues, but we'll get there. Nice. Yeah. So beyond you two kind of talking about this kind of collective and everything how did you bring the others and the other bars and to the fold? I just, the community that we have downtown Yeah. At Mana was easy. You know, Billy, I have, we actually owned Crust too, which right now I, on Princess Street, so I, I just saw Billy one day and I kind of told him what we were doing. He's like, Let you know, let talk to Fred. Fred worked at Rebellion. He Hill helped us open Rebellion a couple years back before leaving to go to be become the beverage director there. And Fred loved the idea, he loves the product, so got them on board and then just kinda went from there. Just mostly just conversations. Nice, nice. So my question, how does this actually work? Cuz I know we've seen we had a bottle a couple months ago that had like a stamp I can't remember which one it was, but like, I know people go out and you kind of pick up a cas. Is that kind of how this works, is you guys just go in and you say, Hey, you know, we try this cask, we want these for us. Well, each company has its own process Okay. Of, of a selection. So I I did bring this in so you guys had a little visual. Perfect. Oh, nice. Yeah. But some distiller. They'll, they'll send you their samples. Some distilleries like you to come out. Right. I would say most prefer you to come out You get a feel for it. You get a feel for what they do and then tasting it there. I don't know if it just tastes better cuz you're there, but it's, it's, it's definitely part of the, the experience. It's definitely an experience. The property too we, we were just talking beforehand, you know, Statesville well, historically what we were told was it was the liquor capital of the world pre-prohibition. And uh, this facility from what he told us was it was a NASCAR building. It was built for a NASCAR team. It's a massive facility and it's, it's surrounded by kind of farmland, I would say. Like, so they have cattle that are around the property. It's beautiful. They have a big barn and there's a rick house and all that good stuff, but, From what I, we were told, like to me, cause I know Wes has done the bourbon trail and stuff like that. Mm-hmm. I hadn't done that. So to see the process and it's a beautiful place, and to see the equipment, the gear, and the, the fermentation happening they're, they're taking the spent grains and moving them to the property where the cattle are gonna eat 'em. So it's like kind of a, to me it's, it's, they're making this product, but it's also going back to the land. You know, that kind of thing. And then they have a massive building there. The Rick house, you said 33,000 barrels in that they're building out and another one just broke ground on two, on another one. And it's a beautiful place. And you would have no idea was built for a NASCAR facility other than they have a two story the event space? No, the, the pot still. Oh, still. Or the, still is like the two stories high. It's, wow. It's, it's crazy. We see like gear like that, like copper and all this stuff. It's like you geek out on it and stuff. So. Well, they've got the best tube and dome. Oh man. It's world class. It's world class. And uh, I was blown away. So like, going back to the whole process of picking a barrel, like mm-hmm. I think if you're gonna do it, you should go to the facility. Cuz when you're immersed in that and see how it's all done, I mean, you see people in there working it and doing it, you could smell it. It's hot. You know, it's all the things you're thinking it's gonna be, and then they take you out and you're like, Show me the barrels. Let's do this. You know? So it was to me, I was geeking out on it. So I know, I know he's more of a veteran behind it, but I'm so glad we went up there. Yeah. As of my, especially for, I mean, a lot of the people that went with us, that was their first time experiencing something like that. So to see the excitement on their faces was, was kind of cool. Yep. Cause I, you know, I was blown away. Just, I, it was not what I expected. No. You know, I was thinking North Carolina fierce. Right, right. You know, and I've. Like you said to Whiskey Trail or have gone to, you know, Bourbon Trail to Maker's Mark, which is just, I mean, that'll blow your socks off, right? Yeah. Then you go to a place like Wild Turkey that's gotten bought by one of those big, big conglomerates and it's just like, it's almost like a hospital. It's like sur in its precision, and then you go to, you know, you go to the places I prefer to be honest, is place like end of days right down the street. Yeah. Right. Small operation, you know, seeing the team work together and then you go to this place and you, I was thinking it was gonna be more like that, but it was, it was world class operation. Well, and also I don't their backstory, I mean, it's a husband, wife family run business, so, you know, just like in the days, You know, local here. Right, right. And then this is a North Carolina company that's obviously, they're, they're on Castle Street. These guys are in States. So Yeah, it's a bigger outfit, obviously, but like, it still felt, I mean, to me, just to hear the fact that the, the owner happened to be out town, you know, like, but he's normally there. Yeah. Mm-hmm. And he probably would've come down and hung out with us, that kind of thing. Like, I, I appreciate that. And and going back to Makers, and not to give away their secrets, but from what he, from what they told us, like they had gone and kind of studied under makers. Right. They were distillers and stuff. And so they had a, like, they embraced them from what they told us. I mean, I'm telling you, it's a world class facility with a good product. And to be from North Carolina, you think everything's gonna come from Kentucky. Yeah. So when you get a get this from our state, you're like, Wow, we can do this, You know? Yeah. Cause I know North Carolina is mostly known for like, vodka, gin, right? When it comes to like, spirits. So I'm excited that there's. It's kind of coming up and the bourbon whiskey setup is actually getting better. Especially after checking this out. I was mm-hmm. surprised I was doing some research and didn't realize how many different options they had already. Cuz I would've expected, I'm like, Oh, hey, you hear the name? I thought it was gonna be like, end of days where they've only released like two things. But they have this, this, what they did was they went straight to whiskey. You know, they didn't Wow. You know, we were at end of days on Tuesday night with Shane and you know, Shane said one of the key things I've heard a lot of distillers say in the past, like, it's the white stuff that keeps the lights on, right? Yeah. So they, they make that vodka, they make that gin so they can pay their bills until they have that time for that rescue to, I mean, to rest whiskey to. If you think about making that investment, you're like, I'm, I'm gonna put all this down. I can't touch it for four to six years. Right? Yeah. And he also mentioned us that a big for them their upstart part was they made like a bourbon cream. And that's what he said originally was what they were paying their bills was making this bourbon cream. They also contracted stuff. That's correct. Yeah. And I was gonna say like, so I'm assuming they were probably making vodkas and things for other people too, but they definitely kind, but that was how they were able to get into the game. So it was kind of, and then it, it was kind of full circle listening to Shane's story too, the other night. Cuz like you said, like in order for these companies to get rolling, they have to turn a product in order to keep the doors and pay them boys. And especially when you go. Southern distilling. I mean, it's a lot bigger outfit too. I can't imagine what the, the overhead on that place is, so, Gosh, it's quite, quite large. It's quite large. Yeah. We're gonna to check that place out. You really gotta go there. I mean, I would anyone listen to this should just make the pilgrimage. It's not, it was three and a half hour drive. That's not too bad. It's not bad at all, but it's right outside of Charlotte. So, you know, you go go out to distillery, visit distillery, you can go to Charlotte for the night, spend the night. Yep. We didn't, we I kind of wish we would have, but Right. We didn't turn around. But no, it was definitely worth driving out there to see, especially if you've been to a place like end of days and you see a small operation like that, kind of like a mom and pop, if you will. And then you go out to see this and you're like, Wow, yeah, this is, this is cool. It is. And you can tell they did their homework. I mean, just listen to Paul. I mean, I know he is sells for them, but, Right. He, number one, he knew his, He was definitely done his own home homework work for his comp, this company. But like they knew what they were doing. They knew what they were getting into. It just sound like they started in what, 2014 as I 2013. 2013. Mm-hmm. Okay. So although they're young they're still I think they're gonna be a force to reckon with. Right. And and it sound like they had a lot of cool things coming down the pipeline. He had mentioned a partnership with the Carolina Panthers. Oh, wow. While we were there they didn't say what, but yeah, Okay. I dunno if I was supposed to say that, but he didn't say what it was a mention. Its just like, don't hashtag this song, Tag them. It's like the cargo district. Whenever you hear it's like, Oh, I heard this. But it's never true until like, until it actually drives. Yeah. Cause so many things change around here. It's ridiculous. Does Southern Distilling have like a seven year and a nine year then since they've been around for so long or No. Okay. At one, I mean, you don't have to age it that long, but he was their double rises in that one double rise is up there. I don't remember when's a release date on that? It's coming up right? I don't remember. He's gonna bring it down. We're our, the Brooklyn Arts Center, obviously we have our Bourn club, like I mentioned. Not gonna plug that, but we, he's gonna bring it down in December. We're gonna do their product line with the club, so. Oh, nice. The process on that rise is unique. Yeah. Cause I think what they do take an older, you know, like higher number of years and then they blend it together with something that's a little bit younger. Oh, okay. So that's why they, if you look on the bottle, it's like the double rise. It's like same shaped bottle, same, the labels green and gold. Right. And that's their double ry. And it's good. I'm not a big Rye fan personally, but You neither. I enjoyed that. See the 20. I was gonna say that, that's one of my favorites. Oh, you'll love the that. It's stellar. It's really good stuff. So, yeah, I mean this is, this one's the weeded, so that's why you're gonna get that more sweet flavor to it and the vanillas and all that stuff. Whereas like your rise, you're gonna have that, you're missing that spice. I mean, there's a little bit of spice in this, but not a lot. But getting back to your question about like how they do it with the, the barrel, they, what they did on this is they had samples from three separate barrels. Okay. They poured it out, you know, and then you go through the process. I mean, over the years I've developed my own process. I don't think there's a correct way to do it. Right. It just what works for you. Right. Yeah. But we went through that whole rigamarole and then we, you know, you basically, for me, I've been doing this a bit, now you get to eliminate one pretty quick. Right. And then it was difficult. I mean the two, yeah. Two that we were down to, which was the one we picked barely 89 and then one 15. They were neck and neck. I just thought this to me, Was better because of the higher proof. And if you're gonna use it in cocktail, like an old fashioned or something like that, you want that high proof to carry through into the cocktail. And it was pretty unanimous. I think it was only it was four to one. Okay. Yeah. this was the first Say who, The one was No but this was the first one that I personally went with. And I wasn't even, like, I lo I appreciate all kinds of whiskeys and I wouldn't say like, I'm not, I don't, as much as I love it, I don't find myself, like I don't, I don't think I have the, I'm not a conno sore or Right, yeah. You know, like I hadn't studied, you know, whiskey tasting or anything. But it, to me, it, it, it was great on the front and good on the back. And there was one had a little more burn I think on the back side maybe. I mean, I'm assuming it's the higher proof of it. I mean, I wrote a note that Yeah, you never really wanna see on this one. It's Medicinal Yeah, exactly. And that was like, I mean, I taste, and what's really weird about this tasting is. I always nose them first. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm. And the one that I eliminated right off the bat because of that was, that one had had the most beautiful nose. Okay. So those things, you know, it could be deceiving once you, you smell that and you're like, Oh, this is gonna be fantastic. Yeah. And you taste and you're like, Oh, this is awful. Yeah. Yeah. And the, the the lower proof one to me just was, I felt like it was missing something. I don't know. The, we landed on one 13.5 and and it was, I, it was like, like we said, I felt like, and I know everybody at my table was like, pretty much like, This is good. I think if Tyler had been there, he'd had gone with one 15 being a Rye fan. I mean, this one had that baking spice flavors and it did have us a little bit of a spicy bite to, it actually drank like a rye. Okay. Oh, that's interesting. Yeah. But this was definitely the, this was the star of the show. And I, I know for me, and I've shared this with some other friends of mine that I feel like are. First in, in whiskey. And they've all been like, Whoa, this is, this is incredible. Right. It's good stuff. Yeah. And they, like I said, it's, it's I felt like we did, we did, we did the world justice by having this pick here, I think, and bringing it back to Wilmington. Yeah, we definitely picked a good one. There's no doubt about that. Especially for the first one. Well, it was important, you know, we talked about doing the first one. Where do you want to go? Who do you wanna look at? We've always have companies like Makers Mark coming at us or All Forest or stuff like that. But I thought like, if we're doing this like as a local community collaborative event, we should try to keep it here in North Carolina. Obviously having Front Street on board is cool because then when the barrels come in, we could roll the barrels over to them and then they could throw some beer in it. Yeah. That's cool. So that's, that's, and that's what's happening. Yeah. They have Nice, Paul brought us a couple barrels. They have them over there and Oh wow. I think they're gonna do the scotch A Yeah. So that's gonna be pretty neat. We won't see that for a bit though. Oh, I'm sure. Couple months, right? Is I something like that? Yeah. That's still a great process to keep it Yeah. More in the state versus being like, Oh, well, you know, we can, we can get it from Kentucky or whatever, Tennessee all around, but keeping something local and being like, Hey, this is, Yeah. A North Carolina beer through and through. And I, I feel like we picked the, the, the best in North Carolina that we have currently right now. Mm-hmm. Yeah. That's by far the best in North Carolina. Like North Carolina whiskey I've ever had. Yeah, me too. And I don't even wanna name other companies, but like, I, this is, this is like something to put your name behind, put a sticker on, right. And actually what's funny is I learned a lot about the sticker process. You can't you know, obviously you can't deface the stick, the laws that go behind it, so Southern Distill makes that little side sticker there. Mm-hmm. But we did talk about making our own little sticker. Like it's just, you can't def Right. Am I correct? You can't deface the, you, you can cover the label. You can't, if you're gonna have this, I mean, obviously you'll notice there is no tax stamp on this, so I just, you know, when we get barrels in, I, I take some from a private collection and this, this is what I pulled that out of, but you could put stick a sticker on it, but there's certain things that aren't supposed to be covered. Yeah. Especially if you're gonna be selling 'em behind a bar, like the tax stamp has to be there still. Right. But yeah, these are all preapproved by the, by ttb. Okay. So really the only thing that can. Challenge is if, if they, there's language on there that they deem a professional or, Yeah, Right? I love that. So how was it working with the abc Cuz I'm sure you had to for this, right? This is easy. Okay. Yeah. This is one of those things where their concern is when this comes in, you're gonna buy it. Right? Right. you know, they don't wanna be sitting on 40 cases of booze and that nobody else is, or people will consume it. But like I understand there are a reason behind that too. Yeah, I mean, it's a, it, you know, there's this commitment. They have to take that in and, and then hold it. And then I'm sure that there's been times where a company commits to it and then they, and pick it up. And then, and, and what I didn't know is they, so they buy the, the L B D buys it from Southern, Right. And then we buy it from the L BD obviously. So Yeah. I assume when we said, Well what's your, when I said, What's your financial commitment? I thought we were gonna write. We check or or, or like, and then we would write a bigger check to Southern. I I had no idea. I didn't realize that we were just, we still had to purchase. I mean, I knew we had to go through the channels, but I just didn't know. I just assumed we were gonna write a check. They're gonna bring this big barrel, you know, we were gonna sit in a parking lot and bottle it with them or something. I don't know. But it was probably a little bit more fun. But it would've been fun. Yeah. That would've been awesome though. But it was a different you know, kind of way that Of course, you know, North Carolina's the way we have to do it. So. Yeah. We in the cargo district, we have a, a whiskey bar as well too. And the owner of that had his own whiskey collection that was like, from like Antiques. Oh, Matt. Oh, Matt. Yep. And he had to sell it to the abc Yeah. And then buy it back from the abc. So it's just crazy. It's so to be said, I mean, I'm, it's, it's, We can, That's a whole nother podcast. We're actually going Right We're going through that antique process right now. Oh really? We got the license. I have a number of bottles in my collection that fit that requirements and they're gonna be on our back bar in the next few months. Oh, that'll be awesome. It's pretty cool. Yeah. Some fun stuff. You know, it came to a decision, I'm like, I could have this, I could keep it, but like, what's the point? Yeah. You know, at that point it's like, what's the point? Yeah. It's funny cuz like I have bo some, I got some cool bottles, but like, I, I always tell my friends it's like, like I'm also a bit of a sneakerhead. I like some Jordans and stuff, so, and I'm like, you know, I got, I got these Travis Scott Jordans and my kids are like, You gotta sell those Dad, you can make a thousand bucks. I'm like, you know, it's like a bourbon to me kids. I'm gonna drink it and I'm gonna wear it, you know, I don't really care about the Yeah. You know, I bought it for a hundred bucks, you know, like, I don't care about, I, that's just me. I don't care about the thousand dollars personally, but I just wanna, I wanna like a cool dad. Right. I'm gonna drink my bourbon too. So who was, We follow a guy on YouTube max tuning. He bought a pair of like, Offwhite Converses and a pair of Travis Scotts and he just wore them to the gym as his lifting shoes. Everyone was like, What are you doing? Yeah. Yeah. Freaking the hell out. And I was like, I don't know who Travis Scott is. He's a rapper. He's a rapper from Texas. He's also married or maybe dates a Kardashian, so be dead. So it's all weird. Yeah. But he he does a collaborative effort with Nike and he basically take, what's funny is the shoe I have is like a Nike Air Jordan one, and he, they reverse the, turned his swoosh like upside down or, or reversed it or whatever. So you pay 150 more dollars cuz the Swoo is backwards. Gotcha. Just like a nice environment. That's been exactly how it works. You know, that's been aged for 20 years, so what, It's a little bit different concept. People collect everything. They will, they definitely will for an extra plug for the bourbon club that you have. I know it. Sold out pretty or filled up pretty quick. So for people like Chris and I who may want to join it, Yeah. I mean, I get that question a lot. It, it, So what happened first, like, is the Bell Tower the, our bourbon bar is located on the balcony level of the church building. Okay. So the fire capacity up there, kind of dictated how big the club was gonna be. Right. We, we could put 60 people up there. The fire capacity is really 50, but we, we could do 60 often up there. Don't listen, no Wilm. But but we also knew that if we so originally we were wanted like 50 members for the club and we kind of let it roll. And actually I think about 90 people signed up. Oh wow. And we, we took 63 because we also knew that like, you know, not every meeting we had, someone might be out town, somebody's gonna be working, some kids gonna be playing soccer, whatever. So steadily we've gotten 50. People. So we just did this last meeting. I think we had 40 some people at end of days for the last meeting. Okay. But now that we kind of, and we also didn't want to like jump in and be like, just not knowing what, like Right. You know, I wanted a good experience. I wanted people also, if they're spending this kind of money to be a part of a club that hopefully every time we do these meetings, they're like pretty awesome. Yeah. For me, like I like the first one we did Smoke Wagon. I had, we we also had like a bluegrass band. We, we did a food element. We had a cocktail for everybody. Yeah. And then we had a so hour and I just wanted it to be and I have a lot of friends too. I had to be like, Well, hold on, let's get settled in first. I know we has some buddies, they've already talked about. And we do plan on expanding it this year, we just wanted to put our feet out there first and see how it worked. Cause we also didn't wanna load it up. And we also wanted like the exclusive style definitely too. So not everybody's like a part of their, and, and we're gonna grow it. I mean, we have, we've kind, we have a storyboard for it and we've, we've been kind of like trying to, trying to create more of a thing and you know, like, I don't know. I want it to be special every time. Right. And I think we ultimately, we'll probably take in other parts of Brooklyn. I mean, it's a massive property, so I think we'll eventually set up, not always in the bourbon bar. Right. There was also talk, you know, doing some cigar pairings and things. So we'll move around the facility and, Yeah. And in 2023, We're hoping to have started working on our, we're, we have a massive basement at Brooklyn. Oh, okay. So we're gonna put a little speakeasy bar down there. Oh, that too. Cool. So we'll probably put and that would be like, kind of open like Monday through Thursday. Yeah. Cause we have events all weekend. Oh, for sure. And it would be an exclusive thing. We'd want you just to show up. Like it'd be a word of mouth bar is how we want it. How we envision it. Like a true speakeasy. True speakeasy. Because we can't, like, as a venue, I don't want people showing up like on the weekends thinking to bars gonna be open, you know? Cause we do what pays our bills events. And that bar concept was more you know, I think of churches, churches are open Wednesday and Sundays. Yeah. Right. And then they got all these days where it closed down. So for us it was more of a like, let's think of ways that we can, we have this property that we can utilize it other times than just the weekend. So that's kind of what, how it all came about. But going back to your original question, like, we are gonna open those memberships up again. Have, we're close to, you know, as we get close to Christmas time, I think, we'll, we're gonna revisit in January. But, but just, you know, let me know, like yeah, I know people so Right. But I mean, we're excited about it. It's been a lot of fun. It's this, but definitely been fun getting all of our, like, people together. And I've met a lot of people just at that, you know, at the bourbon club and stuff. And it's all people that love what we're doing here. Right. You know, people that listen to your podcast. Wilmington definitely has a great, like, I think a great whiskey town. Mm-hmm. You know, it's, Yeah. It's getting there. It's definitely growing. Yeah. Yeah, For sure. And, and that was another, if I can go back to the collaborative effort. Yeah. I mean, these are all people, like, we don't look at each other like, you know, like, you're still in my business or something. Right. But it was a true collaborative and even like meeting with Ellie the other day and talking. Hat, Front Tree Brewery and just everybody, everybody's fun and like, let's do this. It's all about Wilmington and promoting our businesses and all that good stuff. Yeah, I mean, I think we all believe that the more people that are coming downtown to frequent these places. Yep. It's better for all of us. For sure. Definitely. I might be on a wait one night. They might not be. Yeah. Right. Fans, we'll send 'em over there. Yeah. I think it's just, it's beneficial to all of us, to everybody and all of us. We support each other's, you know, We gotta love, I mean, fantastic Food at Rebellion, I mean, fantastic selection of whiskey. Front Street Brewery is amazing. I mean, all these Plate man, I, you can't get wrong Ernest money, right? Jams amazing. If you haven't been in there yet, please go in there cuz gosh, it's amazing. Full spot. Yeah. Super cool. Yeah, I think the only one I haven't been to is Earnest Money. Yeah. It's a great bar. Yeah. not, and so like that's a membership too, right? It is, but it's, it's kind of like Brooklyn in a sense where, another thing too is like for our members, we were trying to open up. Brooklyn to just members. So you come there and drink. But same with Ernest is like, he can only fit like 20 people there comfortably, super small. So they, they want to know when you're coming, that kind of thing. But that's cool. It's an exclusive bar. Not, I think, Are they on a va reservation? They are. Yeah. You call and let 'em know ahead and and I like that personally. I mean, I'm a bar guy, grew up DJing in bars and I love bars. I love all bars. Mm-hmm. But as I've gotten older, I kind of appreciate places like that too, where I can just show up and have a cocktail. Right. But that give you the option, like if you're doing a business meeting, like, Hey, you know, we're gonna meet over here. And it's an exclusive, it's not like someone's gonna randomly walk in or you're gonna a loud group of people outside. It kinda like keeps it a little bit contained. It's very, it's definitely more to me. Yeah. Yeah. And it's cool if you haven't been in there. Go, go check it out. They've done amazing job. And I, Luke Hum. That used to work at Ernest, he, he kind of head heads up our, our bourbon hum deal. So Oh, cool. And that's kind of how my connection was still even Ernest really nice. He's no longer with them, but like he, you know, I, I knew him kind of from, from Ernest and, and going back to Matt Ray, he introduced me to a small wiling a small town. It is that me West and I to Well just, I mean, the connection between us is, it's a crazy story. Yeah. I mean, you know, we had the, the rebellion in DC and these two guys come in there one night. I, I was actually not in town and they're talking about, Oh, we're opening a brewery in Wilmington. They were in DC for I think Wow. I don't think I knew this crack brewer That's it was. And Oh, wow. They saw rebellion. They're like, I think this looks like a place we might be able to get a couple you know, Coors Goldens And they came in and my business partner was in there. Our chef, Travis Weiss. and they started Dave Swaggert, and I think it was Carl. Carl the whole world. They, they were in there rapping. He is like, Oh, well, my business partner's actually in Wilmington right now. He's moving, is he's helping his dad move to Wilmington. So it was just a really, you know, small world. They left a business car. I shot him an email. He started inviting us past the house to see what they were doing, brewing in the shed. And he was, one day he is like, Hey man, you gotta come over and check out my buddy Jay Tatum. He's got this pub shed, you've never, never seen anything like this. So walked, meander down the street and Jay's, you know, Jay's a very hospitable Yeah guy and. you know, our relationship was struck up like that. So it's, it's, Wilmington is a small town. It is. But to, for the fact that those guys were in, in DC and our bar just, I don't think I knew that. I thought y'all had met other from other channels. Pretty, pretty crazy. That is crazy. And that's how we met, as he said. And then we, we'd been, you know, Huh? We both had pub sheds. So I have like a brotherly pub she bond with, with Wey We're just trying to make Wilmington the, the pub shed cattle of the world. World. So, I'm about it. Yeah. I mean, his pub shed, we always talk about, like it's funny, like I, I'm, I'm. I wanna spread pub she culture to everybody. Right. So it's like a, And I have pub shed in me, I follow all these guys. I'm like, Man, this is amazing. Look at this. You know? But his place looks amazing. And we're always like, we gotta, I kind of wish you'd move out of a monkey junction area and come on downtown here. So, yeah, I don't think I could, You could move to Castle Hay. There's a lot of space out there. That would be a good spot. Yeah. Lot of, lot of acreage. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. The, That's not a pub, sir. That's a pub barn. Yeah, that's right. It's all different look. Oh definitely. It's hilarious because like, I moved into this neighborhood and it connects finally to like another set of neighborhood that's sprawl out and there's just this random acreage that just went up for sale. And I'm like, huh, that'd be real nice. And there's a guy off like right past the church and he has his own little shed behind the house. And I'm like, I wonder what he does in there. Cuz it's always, there's always lights on at like 11 o'clock at night when I'm doing a workout. I'm like, I kind of just want to like knock. Right. He's definitely in there hitting some southern stars. definitely. I mean, it's, But sheds, I mean, that's a whole nother podcast. So, but it's it's been fun. You know, I wish I had mine during Covid. Oh, that would've been, that would've been perfect. Timing. Could have just paid off all. Yeah, exactly. that's come on in $20 cover tonight. Talk about speaky. Yeah. $20 cover for everybody tonight. I would've done it. Yeah. No, it's it's been, it's been a lot fun having just once again, like it's funny cuz we all have bars but I love hanging out in my backyard bar, right? Yeah. Just as much as any other bar. So it's just funny how that all I, I think the longer I've been in the business, the less I like being in bars. Right? I would agree with that. Well I mean, you know, like, it's fun cuz you, you could take all the things that you admire about your bar and put 'em in your yard and have your own little space. The drinks are free. You know, not really free, free, but but, and, and you could select what clientele you wanted to walk in your business right? In your backyard that night. Yes. So I'm similar to you. So I was a DJ for, for 10 years as well. So similar like. When it comes to going into crazy clubs, like I'm not really about it anymore. I've, I've had my fun and games with that. So going into a place where you can kind of sit down, enjoy a bourbon and have the less crazy atmosphere. So yeah, I get that. It's it's weird to be on. I, I always tell people like, I'm always at the party, but I'm the puppeteer guy. Right. And I think that's the reason why I still love the host. Like, although it's, I'm not playing music anymore. I'm like, I still love the host, the party. Like, I, I love having people get together. Yeah. It's what I like. It's my, my air and my lungs, you know, just to make sure everybody's having a good time. That kind of thing. Like's all. It's hard to turn off too though. Yeah. Oh yeah. Yeah. It is hard to turn off. I, I have a hard time being in mine places and, and enjoying. I agree. Mm-hmm. Yeah. Cause you're always wondering how is everybody enjoying themselves or like, is the food you just notice things? Yeah. Yeah. Like, like, Man, did they mop this floor today? Or Right. Or you do notice things. Yeah. And it's it's hard to turn it off. I mean, that's the reason why when we did end of days this week, I was like, We're at Shane's place today. This is his gig. We're just here enjoying ourselves, you know? Cut loose a little bit. Cut loose. We had a good time. And then in, and can we not to we're chit-chatting, but should we talk about end the days a little bit or, Yeah. So again, this collaborate is not like a one and done. We, you know, obviously the beer coming up, but so the next one is gonna be with end of days, so, Oh, I was gonna ask, I was gonna ask. Yeah. Yeah. They, they we talked to Shane the other night. We said we'd love to announce it on, on this podcast, so. Oh, awesome. Yeah. So we're gonna do we're not sure what we're doing. Maybe the rye, maybe not, I don't know. Yeah. I think that's just gonna be one of those things we have to sit down with him and chat about, but Yeah. Yeah. He was excited about it. Yeah. I mean, and choosing them a no brainer. Right. A you're really keeping it local. That's awesome. Yeah. And they're good people. And I don't know if you've had Shane on the show, or Oliver? Not yet. I actually just, I sent an email out to him, so if you're listening now, he's such a uh, he gotta get Oliver and Shane together cuz they both are talkers by nature. Yeah, man. Excuse me. And they both kind of come at it from different angles too. Okay. So uh, you know, Shane being a home distiller and mm-hmm. you know, I, Oliver's story's pretty amazing. Like he was an accountant. Yeah. And then he basically was like, you know, I don't wanna be in account anymore. I like making cocktails at my house. And he gave up the corporate world to become, you know, in the days distillery, which I think is, you know, leap of faith. Yeah. Big leap of faith from what? And his dad's got, you know, probably one of the biggest counting firms in Wilmington. And for him to just say like, you know, I'm good. I want to jump into this and do something I love to do. Yeah. Right. You know, my hat's off to that. So, And it shows though, it does show, like, especially when you're there, cuz it's very passionate from both sides. Yeah, yeah. And it's a family business. I mean, best run around putting samples out a Shane's wife. Yeah. You know, Oliver's over there doing this thing. He's like a mad scientist in the lab and you know, I've met their other partner too, who I think does more of the accounting side and stuff like that. But it's a very family business, like all of our businesses really. And it's cool to see, I mean, my kid was working at Brooklyn Arts Center cleaning toilets last. Yeah. So it's thing about is like, people think like when you're a business owner, like, oh, you know, they're bus, but there's a lot of work and sweat and tears that goes into all of it, especially during covid times, you know, so and you know, to have a whiskey and have a, you know, enjoy conversations really is a release for us too. So. Yeah. Sure. So anyway, it's all part of it. It is a part of, part of it. It's a huge part. One of the questions I wanted to ask you guys too is how did you meet the I guess the owners of DR and draft as well too? Cuz since it's a new place that's downtown they hadn't met the owners at first. I met their director of operations. Oh, okay. They were, when they were doing the build out and doing all the work, you know, they would come into rebellion here and there. Oh yeah. Just started up those conversations and, and then I got to meet the owner. We, one of the partners and we asked them, we're like, Hey, we're doing this thing. We put this one together pretty quick. So like the five that are in it now are five and a half. Cuz man, it's may not be the same five on the next one. You know, we may, we may add some, there's a couple other spots downtown that great whiskey establishments that we've definitely would like to include in this. Right. But this was kind of like thrown together pretty quick. And it. What was closest to us. Right, right. Yeah. You know, if you think about outside of, outside of Jay's place, everything is right there within a two, three blocks range right there downtown. Right. But yeah, there's definitely some good spots we'd love to have included in the future. There's a lot of awesome places downtown, obviously. Right. And, and I'm glad that we were, you know, Wes and I had that relationship that he brought Brooklyn in, so and and you know, to expand to the district there. I mean even I hadn't been to the New Eagles there, but I'm, I'm assuming they're gonna have a pretty stellar collection of liquor in there as well. I'm sure we have to get him on here. I saw him. That place looks amazing, by the way. Yeah. Just opened, well yesterday. Yesterday. Yeah, yesterday. Yeah. It's cool. I'm recording. It looks amazing. I always laughed cuz I remember I met Joe years ago. Gosh. I was like a baby back then cuz he knew somebody I, I had worked with when I was a kid working at Bathroom Body Works and they were like, Hey, you should try out this bar. And then I found out that it was a veteran owned bar. So, you know, I always like to support like local people as well as veterans. Yep. And I was a veteran right here. Yeah. And I didn't know that until I saw his shirt. But that's the thing that like everyone, it's like a small community within a small community. Yeah, absolutely. So I always feel like you should definitely support Eagles there. It looks legit. Yeah. I just, it's in a great spot. And I mean it, I, I think it'll be a nice Accessory point for that, right, For the district? Well, that whole area is growing. It is. I mean, three 10 opened up, three tens on those kitchen sink. Far north side of fourth Street. Okay. Kitchen sinks over there. Kitchen sink. Eventually we'll be over there. Commodor will be there. You got, you know, Edward Teach and Fly Trap. There's a lot of stuff to do over there. There is Goat Encompass is obviously an anchor there in the neighborhood. Yeah. Scott runs a great business. He sure does. It's, it's cool. I mean, it's cool to see that neighborhood grow up and. It's exciting. Yep. There's a lot of history with the Brooklyn neighborhood. I mean, people don't realize that, you know, the Brooklyn name dates back to the Civil War. Oh, wow. That was a little Brooklyn of downtown Wilmington, and there was Union soldiers that fought here from Brooklyn, New York, stayed here. Oh, wow. And that was always called Little Brooklyn. I get people always be like, So the Brooklyn Arts Center was bought by a New Yorker, You know, like No, no, not quite. It always, I was like, if you go down the road here, you're gonna see Brooklyn, Brooklyn, Brooklyn. I don't think it, The second you speak, everybody's gonna know that. Yeah, I know, right? Well, I'm from Castle Hay, so South Central Castle Hay. So no, but yeah, but that's kind of, you know, it's the very historic part of downtown. It's cool to see. It's, you know, we, like I said, I'm, I'm thankful Wes invited me in that we made the bridge for me, and then I knew Billy from Manana. And I know Billy Longtime actually. And yeah, shout out to Billy cuz he came up with the name here. Yeah, yeah. Downtown Brown. Yep. You should get Billy on here. He'd be a good podcast about that. Yeah. Billy and his own right. Billy by himself, a Fantastic. And he's got some good stories too, so, but I've known Billy Long, Tom and and I, you know, some of the front Streete brewery folk. And then I didn't know the Jam people until Wes introduced me to him. So, But everybody's good, good people. A lot of good people in, in our industry for sure. No doubt. So West, what brought you down here then? My dad moved down here. Okay. When he retired from New York City, 18. Oh wow. And my wife and I started coming down visit and she was like, We need to move here. I gotta ask you a question though. So my question is, so when Dave went to Rebellion in DC had your dad already moved here? He had just, just moved here, so I was Isnt that weird? In its own right. They were in DC. The weekend I would've been. And you were like, My dad lives there. No, no, I was here. Oh, okay. I was actually with the moving truck and everything, bringing him down here. That, that, that is small world man. It's a weird talking about the fate thing for Right. So, but yeah, then we, I mean that was 2016, something like that. Yeah. And then we found the, Oh, it was buzzers roost. That's right. It was for sale. And we hammered out a deal pretty quick. Started construction in 2018, January, and then April 10th we opened. It was our first day of business. So like we opened in the week of Azel Fest, so, Woo. Oh, that's a good time. Yeah. That was You like, holy cow. like that. Mike Tyson saying everybody's got, plan it so you can punch in the food Right. Zest was that punch. Oh, I bet it was crazy. But it was fun. Yeah, a lot of. We had good leadership for a while there, you know, and, and we still do. Yeah. But yeah, we pulled the plug on living up there, up north and during Covid. Right. Moved down here full time in 2020. Oh, that's awesome. And I gotta throw a plug in for Wes' wife's business too. You should tell. I mean, while we're here, I mean, seriously, like, I think it's cool cuz I didn't even really know about it until ran into west at the Volkswagen. I don't even own a Volkswagen, but my friend comes over and picks me up at his 1968 bug. And I gotta tell you, I mean, you know, I'm a. I'm a dad buy kind of guy, so like putting a, putting on a a, a seatbelt from 1968, I, I kind of enjoyed watching So I pull up and as soon as I see we, I'm like, Thank God there's people like me here. My wife has a bus that's You got, you got lo Yeah. My fat ass fits Yeah. No, she bought a 72 Volkswagen bus. Mm-hmm. Wow. Called Roadies. And she does like local brewery tours and stuff like that. And I've seen that on Instagram. Yeah. It's cool. I, I didn't even know it was, I saw it on Instagram too. I didn't realize that it was hers until I know way. It's cool. Cool to go side gig. Yeah, a little hot side hustle. She, she has so much fun with it. So that's she, and she would be the perfect one to take your round down. She's, Yeah. Got a great personality too. And she really, she loves it. It's, it's always great when you find something you actually love, right? Like, Like you were saying, Oliver, from end of days, like, you know, you're working in a corporate hustle, you were a DJ for many years and you're like, you know, actually I got into DJing cuz I love music. I mean, I tell it all the time. I didn't get in there for the drinks and the, I mean, the women were, were like, it was great to see 'em, you know, But, but I got into it cuz I love music and, and that I, I'm thankful, you know, I can remember being married early on thinking like, like my wife's a CPA and she would introduce me at these CPA things like, it's my husband, of course. Everybody's like, What's he doing? He's like, he's a dj. And I was sitting there thinking like, they're looking at me like I never grew up, you know, like there other accountants here and I'm like the guy that is in the bar still. So, and then luckily I was able to make a living doing weddings and things like that. Right. And and I feel like Brooklyn, where I am now is just a, was a stepping stone to get there. Cause I mean, I'm still in the wedding business, I'm still in the entertainment thing and I still hear music that I love. So like, I feel like I'm doing what I was designed to do. I didn't always feel that way. Right? Cause like you, you know, I felt like you're supposed to jump out the gate and then it's like, go to school and get a degree in what, you know, what am I gonna get a degree in? What? Right. Like, I mean, I wasn't that person, so I wasn't the person that was like, I wanna be a doctor or lawyer or fireman or whatever, you know? Like, I just didn't know what I wanted to do. And I feel like now, like I'm doing what I'm designed or built to do. But it's a tough, it's tough trying to figure that out as we all know sitting here right now. So Yeah, it took, took a while. Yeah. And it's cool when it kind of clicks and, you know, here we are now sampling whiskey with you guys on a Sunday. It is great. So nothing wrong with that. There's nothing wrong with that's living your best life. And, and then the pub shit. Oh, I, it really, if I just had a pub shit, I would've felt like I made it. Right. I don't need anything else. Just a pump. Shed look, look mom. Yeah. I I gotta shed in your backyard and I'll be back here drinking. Right. It's funny you mentioned that though, about people looking at you saying like you know, he didn't grow up. you know, Cause I feel like the bar business has that It does lot for sure. Like, people look at you and you're like, Oh how old are you? Old club did there, When, when are you gonna get a real job? Right. You know, I'm like, I, I hate when I hear staff say that, like, I'm doing this now until I get a real job. Like what's a, what is a real job? Like to me, a real job is you get a paycheck. Yeah. Pay your bills. That's absolutely, that's a real job. I say that all the time too. Especi, Especially in Wilmington. So like, I. A bunch of bars around here and every time I talk to people, they're like, Oh yeah, I'm doing this for now. I'm like, You, you do understand that if you love this and you enjoy talking to people and making cocktails, like this is a career that you can be in. Yeah. And you can, There's a bunch of stuff you that on the episode with Matt, didn't you? Yeah. I, I tell people all the time because I know many bartenders that when they finally quote unquote go to their big boy job or whatever, they're like, I hate this. Yeah. They're missing. I'm like, Yeah, I told you to stay in the bar industry cuz you're great at it. And it's, it could be a very lucrative business if you donely doing it right. And if you do ha you know, you're passionate. Just don't own a bar. That's there's, you look at your staff all making more money. Yeah. And you're like, I felt that way at Brooklyn many a times. I was like, man, they got paid what? And tips. You're like, man, not living my best life here. But no, it is, it is. It is one of those things where you should always just be happy doing what you do. Yes. And You know, life is short. So it's, it's important to kind of, kind of you know, it, to me it feels that way. I mean, we can all fall prey to like the mm-hmm. what we're supposed to do. But it's, I, it's just finding something you like and tap into what your you know, what your best, you know, gifts are, I guess. And give it back to the world to, That sounds kind of, kind of yoga. Yoga is shallow something. I mean True. Just look at what's sitting in front of us here. Yeah. You know, like we're just, you know, I love doing these collaborations. Yeah. You know, these collaborations are a lot of fun. There's a lot of excitement behind them, especially here in Wilmington. There's a beer town. We have our collaboration with New Anthem. They too soon. Thanks Aaron. Oh, shoot. Right. I was say let's talk about that too, since you have it in here. Yeah. So, you know, Aaron hit, we were, you know chatting one day and he said you guys interested in doing Alab with us? And, you know, new anthem's probably one of the best reputations for a brewery here. Yeah, no doubt. In town, I. You know, I was in the Outer Banks last month and we hit a couple bottle shops and stuff like that up there, and it's like, man, new Anthem is everywhere. Yeah. Yeah. Like, I think I've seen more new Anthem here, Right. Backyard. And then I was talking to my gm, we have in Arlington, Virginia location still. Okay. And I was talking to him a couple weeks ago and I was like, Hey. I was like you familiar with New Anthem? And I told him about the possibility of doing Alab and he was just like, I mean, he's a beard nerd. Oh yeah. And he was just geeking out. He's like, Are you kidding me? Like, and I was like, No, he wants to do it. So we talked about it and I'm not a big fan of the really chewy, you know, the, looks like you dump some orange juices ipa. But New Anthem does make some banging ones and yeah. But I was like, it's kind of what I'm thinking is not really what you guys typically do. And he's, he's like, Well, we're looking to branch out and do a couple more things, so, Oh, wow. I was like, well, I would love to have like a crushable, you know, West Coast ipa. You know, something that you're not gonna, you know, you sit there, you can finish that four pack and maybe be looking for the next four pack, but dang. Yeah, they killed it. You know, it's nice citrus flavor. It's got a little dank at the end of it. He and I are both navy vets, so the whole art, the can artwork is all. I love it, man. That's all the tip of the cap. So mid watch is like the worst watch. It's the one you didn't want, right? Yeah. Tell me Yeah, so we, we thought that was a funny name. And then the, the artwork is with the fist, with the swallows on the hands. And that's, you know, that's symbolic for when you would be out at sea. Yeah. And there it's like one way around this part of the globe. The other way around that one. So we had the two swallows on there, and, and back in like the early days, they had things called liberty cuffs. So when sailors would go out wearing their dress blues you have like that cracker jack looking uniform? Yes. So you'd flip the sleeves up. And underneath where the white, white piping was, there would be dragons or mermaids or Oh wow. That's cool. You know, and they were called liberty cuffs and they knew that you were, you were off. It was kind of like, Hey, look at me. Ohs. That's awesome. Off duty. So pretty cool. That is cool. Yeah. We wanted to do something veteran related, but we didn't want to be like, Hey, look at me that buy this because it's vet. We didn't want, That was important to us. We didn't want to be. Cuz I feel like there is a lot of that out there. Right. I mean, we wanted you to buy it because what's inside of it and it's the re the response has been nothing short of amazing. Yeah. I mean, I have a, I went to session the other day, they had it on tap. I was like, That's cool. Oh cool. Was awesome. My buddy Bartends at Island Beverage, he's like, they own, they he's like, I looked down the bar the other day and there was six people sitting at the bar and every single one of them had this can watch. That's awesome. That's awesome. I was like, You didn't get a picture of that man. Yeah. That Instagram, Matt would've been awesome. It's been cool. And Aaron, they're great to work with over at New Anthem, their beer's. Amazing. So he's such a nice guy. And I also wanna like I had some friends come in from Raleigh last week Yeah. Who same like are beer nerds and the like, I mean, they love all beer Wilmington provides, but they wanted to go to New Anthem. They're like, We gotta new Anthem. So, and then you probably saw in their Instas or whatever they're moving, they're gonna have, they're opened up a, a place in Raleigh, so, which is cool. Very cool. Not moving to Raleigh, but they're, I wanna clarify another location. They're, but that's, that's awesome. Yeah. So I think they'll crush it into Raleigh area too. Oh, certainly will. I think that was crazy because, I mean, I've seen New Anthem since they were in that, that little spot. Mm-hmm. right off, right down the street from Husk. And I could never make it because my job always let me out too late. By the time I got downtown and found a parking spot, I was like, they're closed. Yeah. But I love to see how much growth they've had. Yeah. And how they do incorporate a lot of local artists and a lot of people around the area. Cuz like we had HP fangs on Yeah. A while back and he's done artwork for two, if not three other bottles or three their cans. Yeah. They're doing the showers and stuff. Yeah. And then like your rebellion. That's fan. I love the look of that. Can, I mean, that's one day you gotta keep that. I'm sure you got on display in your pub. She so Yeah. Even better have it on draft's. Awesome. That's amazing. Yeah. We had a on Friday, little, little hurricane party. Heck yes. He may or may not have kicked at least one cake. And, and Aaron's a fantastic guy. I've known his wife. I went to high school with her. Mm-hmm. so she's fantastic. Yeah. So did you go to Laney? I went to Laney, yep. Yeah. You Laney guys. I don't wanna tell you what year I graduated. It was It's not, it was Michael Jordan was there long before I was though, so, So we'll go with that. Yeah, we'll roll with that. But Aaron's I've known his white for a long time, so they're just good people. Once again. Amazing Wilmington and folk, and there's a lot of cool stuff coming from Wilmington, so. Yeah. They actually have another barrel of ours. Get out. Yeah. So we just did a Rebel Cas barrel selection. Oh, neat. And they have that over there. Heck yeah. I know. I'm not sure what's, what's in it, but it's, He asked me if I had knee, you know, he's like, What do you want in whatever you wanna put in it. Right. dang. I mean, it's easy working with guys like that, you know? Yeah. I don't care what you, I know it's gonna be good. Yeah. What? I'm not gonna sit here and nitpick. No, I mean, why not? Is, is that who, who did that Can art? Is that, you know, or I should know this, but I don't. It's on their social media page. It's yeah, we'll start that. They have like a couple, like maybe two or three people they're working with right now, doing all their new can work. And what they've coming out with lately has just been nothing short of Fantastic. Yeah, Yeah. Yeah. I gotta ask Wes, so if you turn your cuffs, what we're, what was embroidered on your cost? I was, I was Yeah, that was a long time ago. different west. No, we didn't have a, we didn't cuff art. It wasn't like our thing. I bought, I bought some to do when I was overseas one year and I, I just never, that never had 'em sewed. So right now, what would your cuff art be? Those dragons look pretty They really, and the funny thing is if you wouldn't have told the backstory, I was like, I was trying to put it together, like what is mid watch like with the, with the Asian dragon thing there? So I could, I should have just said, Yeah, Dragon. Also when when I was in, we, we weren't, when we would go into poor, we weren't really allowed to wear our uniforms out. Mm-hmm. So I was in, during an interesting time when it comes to that, we would usually wear a civilian clothes. Yeah. But understandable. What did you do on the Navy? I was aviation machinist mate. Oh, okay. So nothing really cool. I'm not gonna tell you any My dad was actually on a nuclear sub. It's in the Navy, so, Yeah. Yeah. They the one cool thing was just the work in the flight deck though was that's an adrenaline rush. Oh, I'm sure. So, yeah, I can imagine doing that That was really cool. And then just the tempo that you're doing it at, you know, I'm just glad I was 22. 21, 22 Well, yeah. I don't think I could do it now, but gosh, that was a lot of fun. I bet The answer is mid watch is worse because you have, you start your overnight watch and the one, you have a group who does it the first couple hours. Mm-hmm. and that's fine cuz you can go to sleep. The mid watch person has to go to sleep, wake up in the middle of the night, and then there's also the guys who show up at the end of the night. So they gotta sleep all night and then wake up and just wake up early. So mid sucks cuz you sleep a little bit, wake up and then come back. Sleep. Yeah. Yeah. How, how do they pull straws for that mid watch? Low man on the totem pole. Yeah. But it's like everything matter. Who did piss off this? Yeah, right. I got real screwed and basic training some, somebody messed up and it happened that instead of just having normal like a three person watch, they were like, All right, everybody has to be on every night. And so I ended up with like double watches. So it was like you, you'd have first and then you'd end up like three hours later or like you had two. I was like, it was, it was some of the worst mess. But it definitely teaches you to not fuck up. Yeah, I bet. Surprisingly motivating. The lack carried with you. The lack of sleep definitely educates you. Yeah. So this episode, kind of going back to the, the whiskey that you have going on here, cause I'm reading back through your your press release. So it releases on October 5th, right? Yes. All right. So this actual episode is going to release after that, but I wanna make a good clip for you for your release. So with that being said, what's your best pitch to everyone out there to, to have 'em come and try it? I honestly just try it. Yeah, you're gonna love it. I mean, it's just, it's, you guys try it. It's, it's not something that we have to sit here and sell someone on drinking a North Carolina Yeah. I whiskey think right there are, there's gonna be some people. I, I think, and Jay, you were saying this earlier about people were just wowed by it. I think part of that wow factor truly is that you don't expect a whiskey like that to come from North Carolina. So you have that in your head. And it's like, Oh, is this gonna be okay? I don't know. And then you drink, you're like, Wow. Did not see that coming. Well, even you had mentioned is the New York Spirits, what was the war that the say the, just fyi like the picture that, that we were showed, like, it's literally like he got, you know, mainly all buffalo Trace whiskeys. Yeah. It's and then, and then, and then this is sitting right in the middle of that, so I don't butcher this. I'm just gonna read it. Oh, I just pulled it up too. Yeah. It was the best overall bourbon, best single barrel under 10 years. Four bourbons won best in class for, in their respective divisions. The best single barrel bourbon up to 10 years, which also won best overall bourbon was Southern Star Paragon Cash strength, single barrel weeded, Straight bourbon whiskey. So now this is their expression that they sell, right? This is not like our barrel or whatever. This is the one that they sell now. It is, Every barrel is a single barrel like Paragon. So the cash strength. But yeah, they won that big award, which is huge for them. Yeah. It's like there's two major competitions here in the us and it's, you got the New York one and then San Francisco. Oh, okay. And if you play, you're placing in those, your product's good, but the pictures tell it's on there. You got Buffalos. I mean, you got Bland left to right. You got BLANs h Taylor Red Line, who, if not familiar with that one, Garrison Brothers. And I can't make out the label on that one. So Yeah. But then right in the middle of all that is that Southern Star Paragon. Oh, wow. Pretty, pretty. You could cut. You're in company with eh, Taylor and Blas. Yeah, for sure. And I'm telling you, like, if you say none of 'em, you didn't know anything about 'em and put that down the middle, you would still, you would gravitate to this. So tell to when you go back to your question, like, how are you gonna mark market? I'm telling you, you just need to go try it out for whiskey lovers. Like, you'll automatically be turned onto it and you'll, you'll, you're gonna buy, you're gonna buy it again and again and again. Like you got your favorites. Has you, I mean, you gotta get stuff up here, but like you're, this will end up in your collection. Yeah, for sure. Yeah. I mean the sad part was that we only got those what, like 30 cases? Yeah. That's the only sad part, but we'll go back. We definitely gotta, Well I think this is gonna be a long term relationship that we have with these guys for sure. Yeah. I'm gonna shout out Brian Pratt here right now, who's the beverage director over at Flying Machine in Rightful Beach. And when he was on, he was like, Have you really had North Carolina whiskey or bourbon that you've actually enjoyed? And up to that point, Yeah, it was No, I would agree. I would agree with that. That's the reason why went west turned me onto it. I went and got some just to, to sample it and we didn't, It wasn't even this and, but the Paragon, I was like, Wow, that's pretty, like, like I said, I'm not versed in it like, but I know enough to where I was like, Wow, this is different than what I've had from North Carolina. That's for sure. Yeah, definitely that. When you were up there, did they say what. Paragon was or how it came to be or what they, what they did about it make to make it different. Well, I mean, this is the Weeded Bourbon and, and I just, Jay said earlier that they kind of studied under Maker's Mark and got tutelage from Maker's Mark and they wanted to go that weeded bourbon route. They didn't wanna be the highrise, They do make a highrise, but they wanted to their, they wanted their like, I guess flagship, if you will. Yeah. To be a weeded, weeded product. And I think they knocked outta the park. Yeah. Oh, for sure. And I mean, you know, and Paul talking to us was like, You could take this and stick it next to a wellers. And he was like, I don't, He was like, You're gonna have people that will not be able to tell the difference. Yeah. They really won't. Or they might even. I like this, whatever this is, if you took the labels off, you know, like, and I agree with that statement. Yeah, I agree too. Yeah. I also think it, it's, it's gonna be a personal thing too. Yeah. Some people don't like that. High proof for sure. Mm-hmm. personally, I'm, I'm a fan. Like if I was gonna drink Weller Weller one, Antique 1 0 7 would be the one I would go to. Yeah. Yeah. You know, Blanton's for years was like 93. They'd come out with the gold. It's 1 0 3, I prefer the gold. Right. Yeah. I didn't know that. Yeah. And then Makers recently, Makers has always been 90. Yeah. You know, and then there was that one time where they had like this massive brain fart and said, We're gonna go to 87. And people lost their Yeah. Yeah. You know, that was pretty crazy. They went back to 90 and they came out with a 1 0 1, and that 1 0 1 was available for a long time. Only at like duty free and stuff like that. Oh, wow. That's a, I mean, I, I'm a big maker. I always have been. We have a Makers blended rebellion called The Standard, and I've had that, I got it in the pub show, by the way. Yeah. Oh, nice. We've thanks to West, we're on our fifth barrel of that. Gosh. Wow. So, and I'm a Maker's fan too. I mean it to me, like I think Makers was my first love of Whiskey personally. I mean, you know, like, like I love the Red Dip bottle and Yeah. Right. Definitely was. From a marketing standpoint, I remember becoming an ambassador, you know, like our, like I filled out their thing online and to this day I still get, you probably get a little Christmas present in the mail. Do you guys do that at all? No. Yes. Do you become I think it's a marketing genius, by the way. Yeah. I mean, I, I just love the story behind it. Yeah. Like, it was, you know, Margie Samuels, you know, Mr. Samuels Patriarch, his wife went and she designed everything by hand. I mean, she, she actually, the Makers Mark original labels were hand handwritten. Wow. Wow. And then she came out with the dip and the bottle and the wax to make it stand out more on the shelves. I mean, genius. And the recipe's not changed once, you know, So it's, it's pretty neat. I mean, even if you look at, like, everything else that Maker Mark does, whether it's 46, whether it's standard collection, it's still the same base recipe. Yeah. Wow. Or 46. And the, and the private collections, those are all just sta those are finishes, but the base juice is all the same, same mash bill and they, but that's all they do. Yep. Wow. So it was my first love with whiskey still is really, I mean, I, I, I'm, I'm still a Makers guy, so Yeah. And join that that, that their ambassador's program, I'm telling you, he'll get some cool swag for Christmas every year. So we have to sign up now. Yeah, I mean like, like a scar for your bottle is amazing. You also, part of that program is if, if you are, your name gets put on a barrel and that, and I did that early on, you probably did it too, when that barrel matures you you have the opportunity to like purchase some of those bottles. Oh, wow. I did it a long time ago. I think I moved too many times and it just never caught bought up to where I was. But yeah, my friend just got a bottle this year and I was like, How did you do that? She told me. I was like, Hmm. Yep. It's cool though. I mean, it really, she's never been to Maker's Mark, like outta all the ones out there, man. Maker's Mark is just like, it's, it's, it's amazing. I gotta go. It's just amazing. And, and then, you know, over the years I went when it was in their original house, That's the first barrel pick I ever did at Maker's Mark was in the original house. And then last time I went there was, they have this like base, like this bat cave. Mm-hmm. It's literally built into the side of a mountain and you could see like, oh wow, the limestone rocks in the back and the water is literally just dripping down in this thing. It's just, it's amazing. And then now they just built a new facility, which is like lead certified. It's like all, you know I don't really know what that means, but mini sounds intelligent. It just was, it had, you know, the green, green energy and stuff. Yeah. But it's, it's built over overlooking this lake that they is one of the lakes on the properties they use, which is what they're, that's where their water source is. Mm-hmm. Okay. So, I mean, just everything about is well thought out. Just every touch, they don't, they just don't miss anything. That's great. It is in a great experience. I gotta go. Yeah. And so we, we talked about this a little bit before, but I kind of wanna go on for, for both of you guys, your process of tasting, cuz you said it's a little bit different for everyone. So I want to know what both of your processes. I just taste drink it. Yeah. No I mean, I've learned a little bit of even, you know, I, I feel like even what what we was saying earlier, put a little D of water in there. Yeah. I feel like it, I, I think personally that's kind of treat a form or what people say, you know? Mm-hmm. Supposedly it releases all the flavors. Correct. I mean, am I right? It opens it up. Opens it up. I think getting a little of a, you know, a breath of it or whatever before you taste it is kind of key. But I don't know. I'm not, like I said, I, I always laugh cuz I, I remember first time I went to a winery with my wife it was in Napa Valley and they were like talking about there was a forest fire. And then you should be able to taste hints of smoke from the, from the grapes. And I remember going, That's bullshit. But you know, like, but but anyway, so, and then I think of that sometimes when I'm tasting other whiskeys where I'm like, you know, like, to me it's, you're lying. Yeah, you're lying. But I, it's, to me it's like I'm just like tasting this. Like, it was the, the sweetness on the front end and the caramel and the, the, the things that we, you know, that were noted and then a little bit of a burn on the back, but not a lot, you know, like that kind, like those to me are like, I'm, it's just my personal preference, right? Some people want more or more of a burn or more of a, some spices or whatever. It's just what I can personally handle. So I think it's all individual, you know? I don't, I don't think I don't know. Like I don't What's your, I again, I said it before and I stand by this. I don't think there's a wrong way because what works for you may not work for me. Yeah. I think it's very true there. There's something like Wood Woodford Reserve does a really good job of this. In their tasting room, they have this like wheel and it shows you the couple hundred, almost like thousand different flavored that you can pick up. Right. But I think the average person can maybe pick up like five or six. Yeah. Yeah. It's insane. So like these people that are master tasters, they can sit there and they can taste this against the Weller or the, or the ones we're talking about. They could probably tell you what's what I, No way. I can't do that. Me neither. I might be able to say, Yeah, this is like, this is a weeded bourbon. That's a high rye, that's a straight up Ry. That's a scotch. But outside of that, I think it's just personal preference. I mean, yeah, your pallet's gonna be different than mine. You know, For me, when I'm tasting it, I like to nose it first. Mm-hmm. you know, see what, see what I'm getting at. Because again, it's deceiving. Yeah. Barrel 4 0 5 with Southern had this amazingly floral, beautiful nose and then tasted the whiskey. And again, it's, sorry Southern, but it was medicinal You know, I've tasted whiskey before, like we were at Sagamore. Oh yeah. Spirits up in Baltimore one time doing a barrel pick, which we have here at Rebellion. Okay. It, it tasted like the Baltimore Harbor. It was awful. Wow. It was terrible. But then, you know, you pick the next one and you're like, this is exquisite. Yeah. But that's just, that's the reaction that whiskey gets once it goes in that barrel. Yeah. So I like to nose it and then I like to go down the line. Usually what I'll try to do is go to the, the one that had the best nose. I like to try that one first. Yeah. And I'll go down the line, taste each one, let it sit for a second. Maybe sometimes they provide you with crackers and stuff like that, your palate take a drink of water and then go back at it. Yep. And the, usually the way I do is what I like the least. I won't even go back to that one. Yeah. Yeah. I just taste the other ones. Cuz you know, when you're tasting whiskey like that you don't, the one thing you really don't wanna do is why I always try to tell, tell people, like, if we're going to a barrel pick, do you not drink a lot the night before? You're gonna, you'll have pallet fatigue and then you going in there and you make think it's fantastic. And I know this from experience we thought something was absolutely amazing. It was our second time we did a four roses barrel. And it was there high rye mash bill. And we thought it was fantastic when we tasted it and we got it a couple months later and I was like, This is awful. I can't believe we picked. Yeah. I mean, it's not awful. It's full four row. Right? Yeah. But comparing but when you're picking a single barrel, you are looking for something that's just like completely different Yeah. And exquisite. And like, you want to be proud behind that, behind that pick. And we've, we've, we've struck out a couple times over, you know, we've done 28 or 29 of 'em at Rebellion over the years and Yeah. Some of them are great. Like this one. Yeah. Yep. We actually in the last three have been really lucky. We did Yellowstone. Okay. Yeah. Yellowstone was actually one of the coolest distillery visits I've done in a long time. Small operation. They're still, they're the only distillery in the US that's still owned by a Beam family member. Oh, no way. So, cuz they know they sold out. Yeah. So Steven Beam owns that one and the tour guide there was that was pretty epic. The guy's a personality and his story behind Yellowstone was, was incredible. And I know it's has nothing to do with the TV show They're very very adamant about that. Yeah. But yeah, I don't think there's any wrong way doing it. I think that you definitely develop a pattern for yourself over time doing these, but I think just have fun with it. That's the most, I think sometimes, like I've, I've gone to do this with friends of mine. We used to split a lot of barrels in DC Oh yeah. And he we would usually bring a, like a guest or two with us or something like that once in a while. And some of these guys just. They like psyched themselves out. Mm-hmm. they put too much thought into it to where it's not even enjoying the process. And I feel like, again, you can get in your head when it comes to that. Sure. Certainly. I promised you guys that we'd stay around an hour and we've definitely gone over that by now. But I do have one last question for both of you, cuz I ask everyone for both of you, if you were to tell your younger self one thing, what would it be? Dang, That's pretty deep. Go ahead. We, I'm gonna defer to West real quick. That's why we the first before Covid. Yeah, that's a good one. Say it again. If you were your young self Yeah. What would you tell your younger self? Man, that's, that's heavy. That can be heavy. Yeah. We might need to pour another dog. Right. I don't know. Like, I think like kind of, I guess what, what I was saying earlier on, like, you know, It's, it's important to take yourself seriously and take the world seriously, but I don't know my young self, like, I, I never felt like I did, you know made terrible decisions. But like, I, you know, I don't know, like, I like, like just navigate the roads correctly. Like, we all go down this path and you're like, you're trying to figure yourself out, but there's, there's the weight of the world that tries to tell you how you should live and be you. And I think when you're young, you're your consumed with how your, your perception is. So I think as you get older, you're like, Screw it. I'm living my best life. Right. I gotta, I got a pub shed and that's all that matters to me. Yeah. And the, my family and, you know, good friends. But no, I mean, I'm all jokes aside, I think it's just just trying to like, you know, find what you love and, and like, I wish. When I was younger that instead of taking calculus, I would've learned more about, you know, interest rates or Right. Things that really matter to me, like now, like as a business owner, a homeowner car buyer, you know, I mean, just, yeah, just so many little things that you just don't learn, learn and you, you kind of live trial and error. So, I don't know, I mean, not have any regrets I guess, too, so, but that's good. Yeah. I think for me, I guess you said getting aside with the Pope shit, I think just surround yourself with people who you wanna be, you wanna, you looked at because you are for better or worse, who you surround yourself with. And I think too many times when I was younger in the restaurant industry, you know, you get caught up in Yeah. The things that don't matter, you know, the the late night drinking and stuff like that. Mm-hmm. and so kind of ignore the noise you do you, and just kind of put your head down, work hard, stay true to yourself. Yeah, those would be some solid pieces of advice. I feel like if you do that you work hard, you're gonna get where you want to be. I mean, I would agree. I mean that's, I love it. You know, my mom, my grandma, everybody would always be like, You're only as good as the company you keep. I still tell that to my kids. So it's very true. Great advice. Yeah. Yeah. Kids nowadays don't listen. When we tell them that I tell my kids, Did you Yeah, I know. Did actually surprise them. It's funny cuz I tell my kids that'll love 'em when they walk out the door, but I always go, You're always good as come. You keep, Yeah. And then so I always remember that like it's just, it is and it really, they're gonna be 50 years old one day and they're gonna be like, My dad used to say, be as good old, come you keep, And I hope that resonates with 'em honestly cuz it resonated with me. Yeah. Yeah. I always laughed cuz like as a kid, I never thought about it cuz I went to church and I just hung out with the church kids for the most part. But you hit a point when I get older and I'm like, that made sense. Like, You always see these kids and you're like, Oh, hey, those kids look real cool. And then you become an adult and you see their, what they were doing back in the day, you're like they only look cool, but they had a bunch of stuff going on back home and it was just, I just think that's it. Makes sense is people nowadays, they think their parents or the people giving 'em advice are always bullshitting. Yeah. And it's, it's not always true. Yeah. Well, I think in the age of Instagrams and Facebooks life looks good for everybody. Right. But it's not necessarily that way all the time, you know? But, you know, I get, I love seeing people's barbecue and whiskeys and travels and things more than stuff, you know, other stuff. I don't really care, you know? I mean, we all have houses and cars, but end of the day it means nothing to me personally, you know? Right. Yeah. Those travels, those experiences. Oh, yeah. That's another thing that I would try to encourage traveling. My wife and I, we always say, and I know you travel a lot too, but like I, I travel a lot. We, we say money to travel and we feel like, you know, I don't need more, like less is more to me, but like, I just want to, I want to experience this. I wanna sit in a dive bar and ize and have a, have a drink. I'm just saying like, I, and same here, like, I just wanna be sentenced somewhere talking to someone local and, and hearing their story, you know, that kind of thing. So yeah. That's what we do too. So we're not, like, me and my wife, we're not trying to go out and see all of the, like, it's cool to see like the big things that like, yeah, if everyone has to offer, but I like to go like, where's the best local place to go and hang out? Like, where do locals go? I wanna go and talk to them. Get the, get the true feeling of it. I mean, those faces, some of the best times in your life is just sitting around the fire. Yeah. Really. Got that right. True tall. Yeah. Well thank you so much for bringing this in. I feel honored to be one of the first to try this and everything. So thank you so much for Cheers. The Paragon Southern Star Rebellion. Yeah, thanks Rachel's business and we're right ARD center. Thanks to everybody. We did do, Yeah. Thank you for having us. Yeah, thank you so much. I'm, I'm excited to try this new anthem CoLab with you too. So that, that's pretty sweet. Yeah, that's gonna be, I gotta get, I might snake one Yeah, that's fine. If you don't mind, bring me one, but I might grab one for sale to go. I'll go down a rebellion, buy some today you have it on draft and cancel. So, so definitely we'll tag all of the people who are a part of the ilm, downtown Brown in there. Thank you Wes, and for coming on. So you guys are amazing. Definitely check out all the businesses. Keep an eye out for the bell tower. Yeah, we're gonna, we'll, we'll release some stuff on our social platforms, Brooklyn Art Center, Instagram, Facebook, and we'll let you know more about it. We'd love to have y'all. Seriously, it'd be fun. So yeah, love to try more to marry. That's awesome. Podcast up there one night that, that's not a bad idea. Yeah, I like it. I like that idea too. Anytime you wanna use, get out the Well you're gonna have a bar over here clinging it. You have a bar right here. You got, you gotta have some nice selects in here. And by the way, we walked through a yoga studio to get through your, it's kinda like we're just, we came walking in all loud and they were like, sh sorry, it's a Sunday morning. They're yoga and we're like talking about beer whiskeys. So I think they're jealous to each the round. Yep. Yeah. Thank you so much. I greatly appreciate you guys coming on, and we'll talk to you all again soon. All right. Thank you. Thanks f Thanks. Cheers. Cheers.