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improbable piece of good luck came via a contact from the distillery’s info page. Just a few days before Christmas in 2015, Jonathan got a short message from a company called Berry Bros. & Rudd, an English spirits retailer, saying they were looking for some Texas whiskeys, and could Ironroot Republic please send a sample? “This looks legit enough,” Jonathan thought, and forwarded it to Robert. Then he Googled “Berry Brothers & Rudd” and learned they were the oldest wine and


spirits merchant in England. Founded in 1698, Berry Bros. & Rudd still occupies their original building near St. James Palace. Over the last three centuries, Berry Bros. & Rudd has sold drinks to generations of British royalty, hosted Napoleon in their cellars, lost 69 cases of wine and spirits with the Titanic, and rebuilt from bombings during World War II. Ironroot hadn’t even released a whiskey yet, and weren’t planning to anytime soon. But they bit the bullet and sent a few

samples of not-quite-one-year-old whiskey across the Atlantic. Within 24 hours of getting the samples, Berry Brothers & Rudd called the Likarishes, told them their samples were fantastic, and asked to order six barrels. “Are you punking me?” Robert thought. But they weren’t. It turns out that Berry Brothers & Rudd had some obscure ties to Texas. In 1842, the fledgling country of Texas established an embassy in London. They didn’t have a lot of cash, so the


Artisan Spirit: Fall 2017  
Artisan Spirit: Fall 2017  

The magazine for craft distillers and their fans.