To provide communications, programs, services and activities of interest to TI retirees and former TIers around the world.

Witherspoon Distillery Tour, February, 2017

Friday, February 10, 2017 - 11:00am
Slideshow type: 

Twenty-three TIAA members had a great time riding a bus to tour the Witherspoon Distillery on February 10, 2017, first stopping at On the Border to keep our tradition of eating-our-way across Texas intact and to socialize a little longer. After eating a tasty lunch, it was a short journey to the distillery in the heart of historic Old Town Lewisville arriving 30 minutes before our scheduled tour. This gave us enough time to look around their tasting room/gift shop/outdoor whiskey garden before “Spirit Guide Emma” called us to attention. She told us about the history of distilling, the
Witherspoon history and the pro censuses they use to produce whiskey and rum. (The company was started by two ex-Marines in 2011 who considered it a labor of love.) We looked inside the large, stainless steel cooking vats in which cracked grain is heated with hot water to release the sugars and form the wort (pronounced “wert”).The remaining "draff" goes to a Lewisville farmer who has the happiest pigs in town. Yeast is added to the wort to start the fermentation which then produces alcohol and a few by-products. We tasted a 130-proof, clear liquid from their copper still – very potent. (The coloring and taste in their spirits come from the barrels in which they are stored along with various infusion flavorings.) Emma said that Texas is a perfect whiskey state due to the wide fluctuation in temperatures which forces the liquor in the barrels into and out of the wood for several years to pick up flavoring and color. After the 60-minute tour we had a “tasting” of six different spirits, which they make, plus a bite of rum cake – all of which tasted much better than the first sample!  In fact, quite a few bottles and cakes went with us as we hopped on the bus to return to TI. An unexpected treat was a neat view of the new ”Snow” moon and the partial lunar eclipse occurring as we rode home. All in all, it was a very neat adventure.