Here in Baytown the weather has been cold and rainy. At least it is consistent. We head out into the cloudy gloom and brave the mist to get our five miles a day goal in. The 50 degree air is a chilly reminder that winter happens everywhere.
What makes it easier to deal with is knowing that we are going to meet some friends this afternoon for a distillery tour. For Katie and I this is a first. We have toured a few breweries, but never a distillery. I find a small place that looks like it can't even be big enough for a tour, but what the heck. We have been surprised before. A walk through the front door quickly diminished any notion that this place isn't the real deal. The interior tasting room is well decorated and the guy behind the bar gave us a warm welcome. Then the same guy ushered us back into a small back room and started the tour.
Kenny spoke with a real slick enthusiastic approach. Listening to his backstory explained why. He formerly was a key figure in the sales and roll out of Bass Pro Shop's boat line during a long tenure of growth. My guess; he retired and took a gig at a small up and coming distillery even though money was the last of his worries. Don't let that be translated into a negative. It means he is here because he cares, and it really shows.
After some thorough backstory Kenny (great name by the way) walks us outside and into the business end of what's going on. Our first stop is a quick hands on demonstration of an old sugar cane press.
Wandering past the sugar cane press brings us to the back building with the still. Now what makes this tour even more interesting is the fact that it is a micro distillery. They only have a single still and it must do it all. Although Rum is the main focus, vodka, whiskey, and tequila are also generated out of this facility. Our tour guide invites us to stick our dirty fingers into the tiny stream of 190 proof alcohol that is coming out of the still so we can get a taste. Have no fear: there is nothing, and I mean nothing, that is going to live in terms of bacteria after touching our finger.
Kenny keeps talking (it's just an awesome name) and keeps throwing info at us about how all this stuff works. It really gives us an interesting perspective on the process and how all these things work. I'm glad we spent the paltry sum of $12 a piece to visit Railean. It has been an enlightening experience that was carried out with a great presentation. That's really saying something coming from me. You've read my other blogs.
This will be the last blog that comes to you in a guaranteed daily chronological order. I'm at work now and I'm not quite sure I can keep you entertained enough with my daily grind to keep you reading. Have no fear. Random updates of awesomeness will keep coming your as things happen.