BBaF Podcast: Lost Lantern— A New Independent Bottler of American Whiskey

Listen to Episode 107: Lost Lantern— A New Independent Bottler of American Whiskey

This week’s guests on the Bit by a Fox Podcast are Nora Ganley-Roper and Adam Polonski, the husband and wife team behind Lost Lantern, a new independent bottler of American craft whiskey modeled after the long tradition of independent bottlers in Scotland.  

They aren’t doing any of the actual distilling, but they are blending and carefully sourcing only from some of the best hidden gem distilleries from around the country. While this concept is a new one in the states, independent bottling and blending from different distilleries is an age old Scottish tradition that Adam and Nora looked to as they started this company in 2018. Take a listen to hear their story!

This week’s featured cocktail is a Penicillin variation using Lost Lantern’s American Vatted Malt:

AVM #1 Penicillin
2 ounces Lost Lantern American Vatted Malt Edition No 1. 
3/4 ounce *honey-ginger syrup
3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
1/4 ounce Colkegan Single Malt, Lost Lantern Santa Fe Spirits Single Malt Single Cask, or any mesquite-smoked single malt
Candied ginger for garnish

Combine Vatted Malt, honey-ginger syrup, lemon juice, and ice in a cocktail shaker.Shake until chilled. Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice. Float the mesquite-smoked single malt and garnish with candied ginger.

*Honey-Ginger Syrup:
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup water
3 inch chunk of ginger

Directions: Combine the ingredients in a small pan, bring to a boil, then simmer for 5-10 minutes, chill in the fridge overnight (or for a few hours), strain out the ginger. 

BBaF Podcast: Botanical Driven Spirits & LA Terroir with AMASS Distiller Morgan McLachlan

Listen to Episode 106: Botanical Driven Spirits & LA Terroir with AMASS Distiller Morgan McLachlan

This week’s guest on the Bit by a Fox Podcast is Morgan McLachlan, co-founder and master distiller behind Los Angeles based distillery The Spirit Guild and AMASS.

Photo by Cara Robbins

AMASS is Morgan’s most recent project and it takes inspiration from the vast botanicals that grow and are indigenous to Southern California, making for a gin that has 29 different botanicals that include everything from California bay leaf to Lion’s Mane Mushrooms.

Photo by Carlos Moscat
Photo by Cara Robbins

They have now expanded to include body care and home goods using those same botanicals.

Morgan and I discussed everything from Los Angeles terroir, our Pacific Northwest roots, and how she likens the technique and art of distilling to her time in the film industry behind the camera. 

Photo by Tiffany Chan

This week’s featured cocktail is the Vesper using AMASS Gin & Vodka: 

AMASS Vesper
3 oz AMASS Gin
1 oz AMASS Vodka
1/2 ounce Lillet Blanc Aperitif
garnish: lemon twist

Add all ingredients to an ice-filled mixing glass. Stir until well chilled. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a lemon twist.

BBaF Podcast: Australia’s Starward Whisky with Founder David Vitale

Listen to Episode 105: Australia’s Starward Whisky with Founder David Vitale

This week’s guest on the Bit by a Fox Podcast is David Vitale, founder of Australian whisky brand Starward. It’s only been a year and a half since Starward officially launched in the U.S. but the Melbourne-based distillery has been around since 2007.

Their star expression was also the first expression available in the states – Starward Nova, a single malt whisky that has been matured in Australian red wine barrels. This unique whisky has been as much of a hit here as it is in its home country, continuing to collect all the whisky awards.

David and I discussed special quality red wine barrels bring to Starward, the fascinating history of Australian whisky, and his recent move to the states in order to help his brand thrive here. 

This week’s featured cocktail is one of David’s favorites – an Inverted Manhattan using Starward Two-Fold Australian Whisky:


Inverted Manhattan
2 oz Dolin Rouge Vermouth
1 oz Starward Two-Fold Australian Whisky
2-3 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
Cocktail Cherry for Garnish

Add all ingredients to an ice-filled mixing glass. Stir until well chilled. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a cherry.


photos courtesy of Starward.

BBaF Podcast: Artingstall’s Gin with Paul Feig

Listen to Episode 104: Artingstall’s Gin with Paul Feig

This week’s guest on the Bit by a Fox Podcast is everyone’s favorite Drunk Funkle on Instagram, the very charming Paul Feig. The award-winning director and producer behind Bridesmaids, The Heat, Spy, Ghostbusters, A Simple Favor, Last Christmas, Freaks & Geeks, and The Office…has also created his very own gin.

If you’ve been paying attention to his very entertaining nightly happy hours on his Instagram page, you’ve most likely caught sight of the beautiful cut glass decanter holding Artingstall’s Brilliant London Dry Gin.

In this episode, Paul and I discussed his quest to create the perfect gin for his martinis, and the process he went through with Minhas Craft Brewery & Distillery to formulate his ultimate spirit. We also talk LA fashion, our love of cocktail culture, Caesar’s Palace, and his ultimate drink date to get a little Bit by a Fox with!

This week’s featured cocktail is one of Paul’s creations with Artingstall’s Gin, the Deep End.

Deep End
1.5 oz Artingstall’s Gin
1 oz Cointreau
.5 oz Fresh Lime Juice
.5 oz Blue Curaçao 
Garnish: lime wheel

Add all ingredients to an ice-filled shaker. Shake until well chilled. Strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wheel. 

BBaF Podcast: BHAKTA Brandy with Raj Peter Bhakta

Listen to Episode 103: BHAKTA Brandy with Raj Peter Bhakta

Raj Peter Bhakta has had many lives. He’s been a contestant on The Apprentice and gotten “fired” on television by the future President of the United States in front of millions of viewers; He’s tried his hands at politics by running for a seat in the House of Representatives; And he is perhaps best known in the spirits industry as the founder of the most award-winning rye whiskey in the world: the premium Vermont-based WhistlePig. After selling the popular brand last year, Raj has now moved on to reviving another spirits category that has long been under appreciated – Armagnac brandy. 

Launched over the summer, BHAKTA Brandy is a blend of 8 Armagnac vintages 50-152 years old, making it one of the oldest spirits on the market. It is then finished in Islay Scotch casks, resulting in a unique, category defining take on the spirit. 

In this week’s Bit by a Fox Podcast, Raj and I discuss his move from whiskey to brandy, the story behind these hidden vintages, and why we all should be buying these bottles of history right now – One to stock, and one to rock.

BBaF Podcast: Which Fork Do I Use With My Bourbon?

Listen to Episode 102: Which Fork Do I Use With My Bourbon?

In honor of September being National Bourbon Heritage Month, the Bit by a Fox Podcast has had a different bourbon focused episode every week. This week’s episode marks the end of this month’s series. But I have no doubt the subject of bourbon will resurface again soon. In continuation of this whiskey celebration, this week’s guests are Peggy Noe Stevens and Susan Reigler, authors of the recently published book Which Fork Do I Use With My Bourbon? Setting the Table for Tastings, Food Pairings, Dinners, and Cocktail Parties. 

Peggy and Susan are great friends, Kentucky natives, and bourbon and entertainment experts – and fantastic podcast guests. We discussed their bourbon soaked history, how they met, their experience empowering women to enjoy bourbon, and what makes for a magical and successful bourbon-tasting party.

This week’s featured cocktail is Susan’s recipe for a Manhattan:

Manhattan
3 ounces bourbon
1 ounce sweet vermouth
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 stemmed cherry for garnish

Combine the bourbon, vermouth, and bitters in a mixing beaker with ice and stir until well chilled. Strain into a chilled, stemmed cocktail glass or coupe glass. Garnish with the cherry.

BBaF Podcast: Jefferson’s Bourbon with Founder Trey Zoeller

Listen to Episode 101: Jefferson’s Bourbon with Founder Trey Zoeller

In continuation of National Bourbon Heritage Month, this week’s guest on the Bit by a Fox Podcast is Trey Zoeller, founder of Jefferson’s Bourbon, a collection of small batch bourbons founded in 1997, before there was much of a ‘craft’ spirits industry to speak of.

Trey and I discussed his family’s deep connection to Kentucky bourbon, Jefferson’s early days before the bourbon boom when he could barely give the stuff away, and his experimental approach to aging whiskey on a shark tagging vessel. 

This week’s featured “cocktail” is how Trey prefers to drink Jefferson’s Small Batch. We’re calling it Trey’s Favorite.

Trey’s Favorite is Jefferson’s Very Small Batch bourbon poured over a large rock, with a few dashes of spiced cherry bitters, garnished with a twist. 

BBaF Podcast: Distiller Nicole Austin and George Dickel Tennessee Whisky

Listen to Episode 100: Distiller Nicole Austin and George Dickel Tennessee Whisky

September is National Bourbon Heritage Month and The Bit by a Fox Podcast will have a new bourbon focused episode every Friday. This week our guest is Nicole Austin, the charming head distiller at Cascade Hollow Distilling Co. better known as the George Dickel distillery.

Nicole has proven herself to be a gifted distiller, helping to bring home multiple awards in her first few years of working for this storied Tennessee whisky brand established in the 1870s. But she’s also been a huge advocate for the distilling industry in general, and is widely respected for her groundbreaking work in all aspects of the business.

We got to touch on all of that, and talk about the newest Dickel expression the fantastic Bottled in Bond. 

BBaF Podcast: Remus Repeal Reserve with MGP Master Blender, David Whitmer

Listen to Remus Repeal Reserve with MGP Master Blender, David Whitmer

September marks National Bourbon Heritage Month, and this year I’ve decided to celebrate over on The Bit by a Fox Podcast by having a new bourbon-focused episode every Friday.

This week we are kicking off the festivities with an interview with MGP’s David Whitmer, the master blender behind the distillery’s award-winning brands, including the coveted Remus Repeal Reserve.

With the September 1st launch of the Series IV expression, we discuss the consumer excitement behind this fourth release, why the launch was chosen to be before the traditional Repeal Day this year, and the legendary story of lawyer, bootlegger, and bon vivant, George Remus – the inspiration behind the brand, and possibly, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s character, Jay Gatsby! 

This week’s featured cocktail is a Sazerac featuring Remus Repeal Reserve Series IV

Remus Sazerac
2 oz Remus Repeal Reserve
bar spoon Absinthe
4 dashes Bitters
1/4 oz maple syrup
Garnish: Lemon Peel 

Add absinthe to a rocks glass, swirl it around to coat the glass and dump out remaining liquid, then set aside. Add the rest of the ingredients with ice. Stir until chilled. Strain into a rocks glass with large ice cube. Twist lemon oils into drink. Discard or add to the glass.

BBaF Podcast: H. Joseph Ehrmann & Fresh Victor Cocktail Mixers

Listen to episode 98: H. Joseph Ehrmann & Fresh Victor Cocktail Mixers

This week’s Bit by a Fox Podcast features award-winning bartender and industry veteran H. Joseph Ehrmann.

H. chats about his 30+ journey in the food and beverage industry, his legendary San Francisco bar Elixir, and his new line of cold pressed cocktail mixers, Fresh Victor

This week’s featured cocktail is a Fresh Victor Whiskey Sour

Fresh Victor Whiskey Sour
3 oz Fresh Victor Lemon Sour Mix
1 1/2-2oz whiskey
3/4 oz egg white (optional) 

Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker full of ice, shake well and strain over an ice-filled rocks glass; garnish with an orange slice and a cherry.

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