Founded in 1997, Jefferson’s is the brainchild of Trey Zoeller and his father Chet, a famed bourbon historian. They were continuing a family tradition that goes back to Trey’s 8th generation grandmother who was arrested in 1799 for the “production and sales of spirituous liquors.” To personify the brand, they chose Thomas Jefferson—known for his curiosity and experimental spirit. This is a mindset to which Trey has dedicated himself, pushing the boundaries of the definition of bourbon. Upholding tradition, yet always discovering new possibilities.
JEFFERSONS SMALL BATCH
Jefferson’s Bourbon is made in very small batches. Actually, ridiculously small batches. They take up to four different Kentucky straight bourbon whiskies of different ages and marry them together. Doing this they manage get a lot of complexity and balance while maintaining the consistency needed in a bourbon (one of the blends comprising of at least 55% of the total). They wanted to make it big enough for the connoisseur, yet approachable for people just getting into the premium bourbon field.
Interestingly, it's aged in lightly charred barrels, which imparts a distinctive flavour profile compared to whiskey aged in barrels with a high level of char.
JEFFERSONS RESERVE GROTH CASK FINISH
When Trey isn’t drinking bourbon he’s usually partial to a Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley. Jefferson’s were lucky enough to procure barrels from Groth Winery in Napa Valley, California. Groth Winery produced the first wine from California to receive 100 points from Robert Parker and produce one of the most outstanding Cabernet Sauvignon’s from the region. They had the barrels sent to Kentucky, where they filled them with fully matured Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey. They then put the barrels in a “hot box” (a steel container that reaches up to 120 degrees inside during the summer) to sweat the wine out of the wood. In the first 60 days Trey noted that it tasted like a glass of Cabernet followed by a shot of bourbon. Over the ensuing months, the bourbon took on unique characteristics from the Groth barrel which married together in a supremely balanced spirit. Today, the Groth Cask Finish explodes with luscious dark berry flavours, such as black cherry and blackberry, evident from the red hue that the bourbon has adopted.