I have better contacts at some of the American whiskey producers than I do at others. I don't know anybody at Diageo. I know Tom Bulleit (Bulleit Bourbon) and I met the Diageo brand guy responsible for North American whiskey (big gun is Crown Royal) once about three years ago. That's it. But I do have a name of somebody in PR who did return an email from me once, so I tried her on the Dickel questions. Here's what I asked:
"What is the status of Dickel No. 8, re the shortage reported by AP in December? Will Cascade Hollow continue to be distributed after No. 8 returns? Are there shortages at retail of Dickel No. 12 and Barrel Select too, as has been reported to me?
"Also, I noticed on the Dickel web site what appears to be some new historical information. I would like to know the basis for the claim that George and Augusta Dickel visited Tullahoma in 1867 and that George Dickel established a business there in 1870.
"Most accounts with which I am familiar have Cascade Distillery established in 1877/8 and independent of Dickel until 1888. Those particular dates come from Dr. Nicholas Morgan, who was archivist for United Distillers pre Diageo. That information is more than 10-years-old, so maybe something new has been discovered."
That guy from Utah got mad at me for not talking to him before I wrote what I did about his product. Maybe Diageo will feel the same way. I'm sympathetic in principle, but since I'm writing, in both cases, about stuff they've either published directly or caused to be published through the magic of PR, I feel like they already had their say.
I have not, by the way, heard anything more from either the High West guy or the Templeton guy.