Sunday, June 07, 2009

We left the office and headed down the road. Bette stated that some countries did not have cardinal and the folks from those countries were delighted to see ours. This was just one little tidbit she imparted as I tagged along beside her. We got to the still house and this was one of many stairs we would climb. These were metal and had a rhino coating to keep folks from slipping.
I was taking photos of the sides of the Still House as everyone traversed the first set of steps.

Another side of the Still House. OOPS, I am about to get left behind. Rush up the steps and into a very very HOT WORLD. On the left side of this inferno, is a glass enclose room with several running computers and on the outside we could see liquid gold going into a glass tube. More steps. Up, Up and Up we go and you can see these HUGE vats and one is open. Those who were brave got close enough to get a whiff. Fermenting grain. No thank you, I can smell it close enough where I stood.

Fiddle lee dee, this should have been after those steps after the Mellowing Process.

You can see the steam coming off the fermenting vats. The building high on the hill, is a barrel house and the first tour I ever took, the bus took us up there and we had to walk down. The birthday boy(post 1) was our tour guide on our first tour back when Puppy was small and the first thing he said about the barrel house was "This smells like the inside of my truck."

No matter how hot the outside temperature happens to be, you will think it is very cool after being inside the Still House. Check out the bark of this tree that was planted between the Still House and the Mellowing House.

This is the sign that is posted beneath the tree.

Next building is the Mellowing House. When you first enter you see several very large container with glass tops. Above the first one, is a mirror so you can see clearly what is happening in the large container in case you are not tall enough or near enough to look down. The charcoal is ten feet deep and several pipes with holes running across the top just a few inches from the charcoal. From these holes slowly drops of liquid gold hit the charcoal to filter this fine brew. Again this charcoal is used only one time. At the middle container Bette unlocked the lid, and flapped it several times and then held it open about an inch and you could lean in and take a sniff of liquid heaven. She advised if you opened your mouth you could taste it also. I did not do that but I did take a very deep, deep, deep breath. AH. Now I am double thirsty.

Sorry the photo are a little out of order. No I did not sip before I posted. This is the side view of the Mellowing building before we entered the door.

Not kidding, more STEPS!!!! See why you need comfy shoes on your paws.

Same building but at the bottom and we are heading to the Bottling Building.

The alley between buildings.

The Bottling building also has two sets of doors. We entered one set and their was a bench and a video screen about barrel making. Barrels are hand made and no nails are used. A good barrel maker can make up to 200 barrels a day. There is a scene on the left of the room painted on corrugated tin. After the video we were told to look around at the names on the plagues and take the cork out of the display barrel and take a sniff. Of course I headed for the barrel first and then after a long deep breath with a line behind me, I then re corked the barrel and started checking out the plagues. They were brass and were about 2X3 inches in size. There were engraved names from individual, companies and organizations. When you buy a barrel you get a thumb size number 7 placed on your plague and after you buy seven barrels, you get a thumb size red 7. My favorite singer, George Strait had bought a barrel. Next is a Christmas tree shape of full bottles of Jack Daniel which shows how many bottles come from one barrel. Then an assembly of workers filling the bottles of a barrel. You can purchase a barrel and the bottle whiskey along with the barrel will be sent to your requested destination.

Outside the second set of doors. An interesting fact, each employee( between 400-600) on a certain day of every month gets a bottle of Jack Daniels. No one ever misses that day of work.

This was a little building across the street from the Bottling building. The guide had gone ahead and as usual I was bring up the rear. Taking photos and wishing for another whiff.

Prince, Art and Char had gotten tired of waiting on the photo kitty, so they started down the path to the Barrel House. Char was having trouble with her hip hurting and she did not do any of the climbing but would wait for us to pop back out on the street. She had lots of comfortable benches to wait for us to show our faces.

On my way, I got off the path to take this photo of a truck back into a selected position. Wonder what is inside the trailer?

You could cross this little bridge to go to your car. I thought the use of wagon wheels was interesting. There were ducks but I did not take the time to photo them as the group was getting quite a ways ahead of me.

As I was rushing to catch up, I noticed this truck across the little creek.

Inside were rows and rows of barrels with liquid gold inside and each had a stamp when it was put inside the barrel. When you looked up you saw barrels stacked to the ceiling. A very impressive sight. Again I must state that the first time Prince, Puppy and I came years ago, this building served as the visitors building. Since the new one (post 1) has taken its place, it has returned to its original use, a Barrel House.

As we walked back up the hill to the visitors center from the barrel house, we chatted about how wonderful the tour and guide had been. Bette was on the porch and each person told her what a wonderful guide she had been and how much they had enjoyed the tour. One of the old Nascars(the ones being raced this year are Impalas) that Jack sponsor.

At the bar you could pick up a free glass of lemonade and sit down to quench your thirst and rest ya dogs or paws. As we were draining our glass, Char looked at her watch and stated "We have ten minutes to get to Miss Bobos for lunch. We placed our glass on the tray and headed out to the car.
The kitty justice is you know why you see the spring first as your throat becomes a little dryer with each building you exit. Classic sales approach. But remember Moore County is DRY DRY AND DRYER.That is why you get lemonade.

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