• May 1, 2018

The LBS Barrel Pick Program

Bourbon advocate and member Greg Turcotte shares how the Barrel Pick Program through Lexington Bourbon Society is unique and a memorable experience for all who are able to participate.

[Image: Lexington Bourbon Society provides an exclusive barrel pick experience for members]

The Experience

The Lexington Bourbon Society has brought me many things for which I am thankful for. The awakening to a passion of mine I didn’t know existed (Rye Whiskey), a chance to meet a living legend (Jimmy Russell), a sense of community through charitable causes (too many to count), and the opportunity to foster some of the closest friendships I’ve ever known (you know who you are)! All of these are things a prospective member could experience possibly even in just the first month of joining LBS alone. However, there is one thing I always end up talking to my family, colleagues, or random strangers the first time I meet them: my distillery experience on a barrel pick with the Lexington Bourbon Society.

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[Photo: Barrel picks provide unique experiences for those fortunate enough to partake]

Luck of the Draw: If you’re a member of the LBS-Members group on Facebook, you probably already know what this section is all about. If not, my guess is you’ve never seen the glorious world of random.org at work. It is a “true” random number service, in other words, it actually randomizes the entire set of names without using a predetermined algorithm. Our fearless leader, Matt Preston, is the organizer and for full transparency does a Facebook live video when choosing the lucky few who go on the barrel pick. If it’s really important, he may even go three times just for good measure.

The Anticipation: Like a kid at Christmas, there isn’t anything that compares to the lead-up of your first barrel pick. You’ve heard the stories from other members, or maybe know a liquor store owner who has been so fortunate. I guess you could shell out $10,000 and invite a few of your buddies, but for us lesser mortals this may be your only ticket to the promised land. Personally, I was just happy to learn about how master distillers go about their day-to-day operations, and in a much smaller degree “choose” a bourbon that will never, ever be replicated.

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[Photo: Each barrel is unique and personalized to the group who choose it to be bottled]

The Distillery: If you are lucky enough to be selected and have survived the lead-up, the experience at the distillery does not disappoint. Again, it probably helps that you’re with other LBS members who are extremely excited to be on the pick, and get to share in the moment. A full private tour usually precedes the drinking portion of the day, and gives a great insight into the history of the brand. Then, you get to start the journey on picking your custom, never duplicated, never replicated, LBS barrel pick!

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[Photo: We hope you become a member and get to experience a pick of your own]

ABOUT THE AUTHORGreg Turcotte is a Lexington Bourbon Society member and advocate. He lives in Lexington, Kentucky.