fbpx

OUR STORY

QUICK COMPANY OVERVIEW

Brain Brew Custom WHISKeY is our craft distillery. It produces, finishes & bottles WHISKeY for our collaboration partners.

Dexter Bourbon Company is our primary retail brand. It sells the epic Dexter Three Wood Bourbon and the Dexter 1862 Bourbon Blending Machine.

WoodCraft Bourbon Blender LLC is our franchising company. It enables entrepreneurs and existing distilleries, etc. to produce and market custom bourbon.

Eureka! Ranch is our sister company and the location of our distillery. It gives us the training, tools and a fantastic location to create innovative experiences & products.

FOUNDED BASED ON a love OF whiskey

We founded Brain Brew in January of 2016 because we LOVE all WHISKeY – spelled both with and without an “e” – in cocktails, neat and on the rocks. We called it “Brain Brew” to remind ourselves to keep thinking – smarter, faster and more innovatively. 

After 18 months, we took two of eight Double Gold Medals at the North American Bourbon & Whiskey competition. As we sat sipping our winning Bourbons, we were struck by how much fun we were having creating new bourbons and sharing them with family and friends.    

From this was born a simple idea…. To Enable Everyone to Have Their Own Bourbon.   

When COVID hit, like many fellow craft distilleries, we produced hand sanitizer.  With the help of  our community we ended up donating over 500,000 bottles worth.   Pictured:  Joe Girgash  coo / co-founder and Doug Hall ceo / co-founder.  

IT’s All about the wood

It’s been long understood that 70% of the flavor and 100% of the smoothness of bourbon and all whiskies comes from the interaction of whiskey and wood.   Great whiskey is created when the spirit soaks into the barrel wood during the warmth of the day and summer then comes out of the wood during cool nights and winters.   The result is a chain reaction of transformations in the whiskey that takes it from raw and rough to complex and smooth. 

After some exploratory experiments we quickly learned that the key to success was to not CHANGE the natural process of wood and whiskey – through chemicals, crazy energy sources or biochemistry – BUT RATHER to SIMPLY REDUCE VARIATION IN THE NATURAL WHISKEY PROCESS.   To do this we designed and built special equipment that allowed us to manage the heating and cooling within a tenth of a degree.  The result is a level of quality control of the whiskey / wood interaction that has never before been seen in the industry.

18 months later, after thousands of experiments and hundreds of quantitative consumer taste we won 2 of 8 Double Gold medals at the North American Bourbon & Whiskey Competition.    As we sat sipping our winning Bourbons – we were struck by how much fun we were having creating new bourbons and sharing them with family and friends.    

From this was born a simple belief…. Everyone Deserves Their Own Bourbon.

Whiskey Row 1800s

The 1800s were the golden age of custom whiskey

In the 1800s, most whiskey was purchased from whiskey merchants who were barrel blenders. They would buy whiskey from farmers to distilleries. Then, they would blend various barrels together to unlock different tastes depending on their customer’s preferences. 

In Cincinnati, there were over 75 barrel blenders and even more all over the world. One of the most famous barrel blenders was Johnnie Walker in Scotland.  

Today, with our custom bourbon offerings, we are returning bourbon to its roots in the 1800s.  Or said another way we are returning bourbon to being, “Of the People – By the People – For the People”.

The birth of noble oak

Our sister company, The Eureka! Ranch, that Doug founded is a world leader in the invention of breakthrough products and services. One of the Eureka! Ranch’s longest continuous clients is Edrington – distillers of The Macallan – the world’s most expensive whiskey as well as Highland Park, Famous Grouse and others.

At a meeting in Scotland Doug presented some of the new whiskies that he and Joe and created.  The products tasted were promising enough for the CEO of Edrington to encourage further exploration.  The result was a collaboration between Brain Brew and Edrington that lead to Noble Oak Double Oak Bourbon.  It’s a 95 point, SF Double Gold Medal Winning Bourbon that is aged in American Oak then WoodCraft finished by Brain Brew with European Sherry Oak Staves.

The Edrington Marketing team in New York developed amazing packaging and made a meaningful statement to the world – promising to plant a tree for every bottle of Noble Oak sold.   With world class product, and packaging and marketing Noble Oak volume soared and quickly it became available in 45 states across the USA.

To fulfill demand Joe lead the expansion of our distillery – built on the grounds of the Eureka! Ranch just east of Cincinnati and seven miles north of Kentucky. 

Today, we can produce and bottle over 1 million cases a year. 

Noble Oak 2

DEXTER BOURBON COMPANY IS BORN

Gold Image

As Noble Oak continued to grow across the USA the Brain Brew Crew did research on the history of the birth of the bourbon business.  They were surprised to learn that the greater Cincinnati area where they lived was responsible for 85% of the American whiskey business in the 1800s. It was a different business back then – as whiskey was created mostly by farmers – and sold to consumers by barrel blenders.  

One of the pioneers of the birth of the bourbon business was Edmund Dexter. He was so renowned –  Charles Dickens and King Edward VII stayed with him at his home on 4th street in Cincinnati.   In his honor the team worked to create a world class bourbon worthy of the Dexter brand name.   The result was DEXTER Three Wood Straight Bourbon Finished With 200 Year Oak, Maple Wood & Cherry Wood.  The team knew early on that they were on to something when Ultimate Spirits Competition selected it as one of the top 100 spirits in the world (one of just 12 bourbons on the list) and gave it an epic 95 Rating – its highest recommendation. 

The brand was introduced in a limited release on the morning of January 2nd 2021.  It sold out in 50 minutes!   This initial success lead the team to do test markets in Ohio, Minnesota, New Hampshire and Kentucky.    Again the response was again beyond expectations.  In the fall of 2021 the team decided to create Dexter Bourbon Company as a separate division and the home of all of our retail (off premise) and bar/restaurant (on premise) products. 

Dexter 1862 Custom Bourbon Blending Machines:  Never ending innovation resulted in a way to bring Custom Bourbon to bars and restaurants.    Consumers simply answer 13 questions on their phone – and an Artificial Intelligence App creates a customer bourbon to their tastes.  The bartender simply scans a QR code and VOILA! – customers have their bourbon their way in 3 seconds. 

Noble Oak 2

Bar/Restaurant Bourbon Blending Machine enables everyone to have their custom bourbon by the glass.

Woodcraft bourbon blender franchising

The success of Custom Bourbon – at our Brain Brew Craft Distillery sparked inquiries from entrepreneurs, distilleries, breweries and wineries about the potential for buying a franchise to enable them to offer custom bourbon.   This business model was something our leadership team had experience with.   They currently license the Eureka! Ranch’s  Innovation Engineering curriculum to Universities, Colleges and Corporations around the world.   

In August of 2021 in Louisville at the American Distilling Institute Conference WoodCraft Bourbon Blender LLC was announced publicly.   The response was very encouraging.  Craft distillers quickly saw the ability to grow their profitability by offering Custom Bourbon Experiences and Made to Order Bourbon. 

This fall – the first Franchise location will open.  More on that when it’s publicly announced :). 

THANK YOU TO OUR FANS

Thank you to our family, friends and distillery fans. The support you give to our never ending quest to think smarter, faster and more innovatively about bourbon and cocktails is really appreciated. What a wild and wonderful adventure this is! 

Cheers,

Doug Hall – co-founder / ceo – contact Doug

Joe Girgash – co-founder /coo – contact Joe

Yes – we actually started in the Garage at the Eureka! Ranch.  Today this is where all WoodCraft™ Finishing is done.

Our Bottling Warehouse opened in April 2020.  

The Great Room at our Eureka! Ranch tasting room.  It’s where we conducted live Bourbon Blending experiences before COVID-19 closures in Ohio.

Our founder and CEO, Doug Hall, teaching Bourbon Blending

The Planet Eureka! Foundation

When COVID hit – like many distilleries  – the Brain Brew Crew, with the support of our fans, donated the equivalent of over 500,000 eight ounce bottles of hand hand sanitizer to those in need – hospitals, food pantries, teachers, nursing homes, police and fire departments and at risk citizens.

Learn More