Whiskey Maker Puts Craftsmanship Into Barrels

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Not even fans of Jack Daniel's would recognize the clear liquid poured into barrels at the popular whiskey's Tennessee distillery.

The clear liquid acquires its amber color while it's maturing for years inside new charred white oak barrels.

Jerry Nalley, production manager at Blue Grass Cooperage where the barrels are made, says the barrel is a very important part of the recipe of the finished product.

Each week, 191 production workers make 10-thousand to 11-thousand barrels.

Unlike Brown-Forman, some other whiskey producers buy their barrels rather than make their own.

Parker Beam, co-master distiller at Heaven Hill Distilleries, says the bottom line is, if there isn't a good barrel, the product that comes out of it is not going to be good. Heaven Hill has several barrel suppliers for its bourbons.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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