Wolves initial release, titled “First Run,” is a blend comprised of a whiskey double distilled from a craft Stout beer, aged for 8 years in French oak, a whiskey double distilled from a craft Pilsner beer, aged in New American Oak for 5 years, and a Rye whiskey selected for its spice to round out the finish. The full blend is lightly filtered with the mineral rich water of Sonoma county.
The Wolves team sampled more than 50 barrels and created 19 test blends at different ratios and proof contents before settling on a dangerously smooth 106 proof expression.
“I wanted to sip something with my people at my house that was truly different, something you couldn’t find anywhere else,” said Jon Buscemi of his new project. “When we found the Master Distiller in Northern California, we knew we found what we were looking for, for our first release. He’s an artist. We brought some special Rye to the table and blended a juice that is balanced and rich.”
The 13th generation Master Distiller, Marko Karakasevic, lives by the same code and compass that James and Jon abide. Each small, bespoke batch of distillate is created over a 10-day period. The Master Distiller sleeps in four hour shifts during this time, and no one else is permitted to touch the still. The Master Distiller double distills Wolves exclusively in a rare Alambic pot still, imported from Cognac, France – one of only 5 in the United States. The Master Distiller has sole control over where the cuts are made in the distillation process, using only the ‘heart of hearts’ for Wolves.