Cousin Lauren came down to visit me here in Nashville the other day. After some lunch and a trip to Comcast to switch out my cable box (I’m so much fun to visit), we headed to Lynchburg, Tennessee for a tour of Jack Daniel’s Distillery.
As we neared the distillery in the car, cousin Lauren remarked how another distillery she had driven by had these creepy old buildings. Moments after we stepped out of the car, we determined this place was creepy, too. Must be a distillery thing. And the fact that it was miserably cold, damp, and foggy. Other than that, it was a perfect day for a distillery tour.
I’m such a great host.
This was pretty nifty. There is a natural source of water under this here hunk of rock that is used in the production of Jack Daniel’s products. Apparently it’s some pretty pure stuff and makes Jack Daniel’s whiskey taste real good. How do people figure these things out is what I want to know.
This is not a black and white photo in case you were wondering.
After we went through the buildings where the whiskey is produced, we found ourselves by some very black trees. The trees turn black from a mold that grows on them as a byproduct of the distillery. Our tour guide assured us that the mold is not harmful to the trees or to people and is in fact a sign that the production of whiskey is going well. Looks can be deceiving!
In the next building, where the whiskey drips through 10 feet of hard sugar maple charcoal to be purified, our tour guide lifted the lids of the large containers so we could smell the whiskey. We got a huge whiff of the whiskey, which made me think of bourbon balls as the smell lingered in my nostrils.
Pleasant thought, no?
This prompted me to ask cousin Lauren about some candy my mom had brought down with her from her friend. I was under the impression that all chocolate specimens in the tin were bourbon balls. Here was our clarifying conversation:
Me: “Those bourbon balls didn’t really taste like bourbon at all. They actually tasted almost like coconut.”
Cousin Lauren, “Did the ones you ate have pecans on top of them?”
Cousin Lauren: “Then you were eating coconut balls. The ones with pecans on top are bourbon balls. The ones without pecans are coconut balls.”
Me: “Oh……No wonder they tasted like coconut. At least I have a good sense of taste and could identify the coconut.”
Cousin Lauren: “…and the lack of bourbon.”
I’m glad we got that cleared up. It was really troubling me.
Towards the end of the tour, I asked our tour guide where she was from because she clearly did not have a southern accent and had been asking people in the group where we were from. Coincidentally, she was from Massachusetts, where I lived for 13 years and moved here from in April. I asked her where in Massachusetts she was from and she told me Salem, a town famous for the witch trials that occurred centuries ago. These creepy trees would fit right in there.
All I have to say is, this world is tiny.
And I like bourbon balls.
And try to arrive at the distillery before 2:30PM if you would like a tasting tour.
We arrived at 2:40PM.
Y’all be careful,