• Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

  • product-image-quickten.png.a40203b506711f7664fc62024e54a584.pngDid you know that these all-volunteer forums are operated by the 501(c)3 not-for-profit Society for Culinary Arts & Letters? This holiday season, consider a tax-deductible Quick Ten Bucks to support the eG Forums and help us remain completely advertising-free. Thanks to all those who have donated so far!

Chris Amirault

The White Dog Craze

49 posts in this topic

I'm trying to wrap my mind around this white dog craze. It's a bit late in the game, I realize; the NY Times ran a piece about it last May, and in most major markets the stuff has been around for a while.

Here in RI, we've got just two that I can find: Buffalo Trace White Dog Mash #1 (good luck finding it on BT's horrible website) and the Ransom Whippersnapper, from the geniuses who make Ransom Old Tom, one of the finest spirits available anywhere.

They're interesting, sure enough. But it's hard to know what to make with them. (Sippers they ain't; even someone who likes overproof rum straight (me) would find that BT a bit much.) I haven't tried mixing them besides a few, failed Old Fashioned attempts. Thoughts on that?

I'm also not sure what to make of them. Why the sudden interest? Who's buying this stuff? For what? You? Why?


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good question. Who is buying this stuff???

In today's Gear Patrol there was a link to Ole Smokey Tennessee Moonshine

Now I was born and raised in a "dry" county in Kentucky (still is) but that was only the commercial stuff. I am positive that a good bit of the "tax free" stuff is still rolling around in the hills.

I don't drink at all because of an allergy to alcohol but I don't think I would get anywhere near this stuff even if I did.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

My blog:Books,Cooks,Gadgets&Gardening

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From what I can gather from presentations I've attended and conversations I've had with the folks from Buffalo Trace, they're a bit mystified as well. My sense is they originally released it so a few, curious connoisseurs could taste of white whiskey. And then it sold more than they expected.

You can hardly blame the distilleries for making this stuff. Must be incredibly cheap to produce, since you forgo the barrel and warehousing costs.

I've only tasted a few and don't own a bottle, so I haven't tried to mix the stuff. I wonder, though, if you could treat it a bit like a rum agricole? Maybe you could make a 'Ti Punch substituting lemon for lime and Steen's Cane Syrup for regular cane syrup? Just a thought.


Edited by TAPrice (log)

Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"

Homepage and writings; A Frolic of My Own (personal blog)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've always toyed with the idea of using it Pisco sour style. I've never wanted to buy a bottle though just for this one experiment, so I've never tried it. I can get the Buffalo Trace and Tuthilltown bottles but I've only had it from friends.


nunc est bibendum...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They're interesting, sure enough. But it's hard to know what to make with them. (Sippers they ain't; even someone who likes overproof rum straight (me) would find that BT a bit much.) I haven't tried mixing them besides a few, failed Old Fashioned attempts. Thoughts on that?

I'm also not sure what to make of them. Why the sudden interest? Who's buying this stuff? For what? You? Why?

i love sipping them. my favorite restaurant doesn't always have cocktails i want to explore so i usually order a whale's tale pale ale and a buffalo trace white dog. so many spirits these days are over aged in my opinion, like the california chardonnay's of the roaring nineties... i find myself rebelling against the barrel.

my favorite ways to use white dogs in drinks ends up looking like this:

1 oz. ransom old tom gin

.5 oz. wasmund's rye spirit

1 oz. bianco vermouth

.5 oz. brandymel honey liqueur

the white dog is just a fraction and adds extra aromatic tension to the drink (aromas that increase the perception of sweetness plus aromas that decrease it).

kirschwasser plus white dog is also great:

1 oz. hiram walker kirshwasser

1 oz. buffalo trace white dog

1 oz. lemon juice

bar spoon non aromatic white sugar

2 dashes angostura bitters

white dog has become a staple for me.


abstract expressionist beverage compounder

creator of acquired tastes

bostonapothecary.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know if I'd say it's a staple, but my limited successes have also been mostly from mixing it with other spirits as an accent. I haven't played with it much or recently, and nothing I came up with was particularly memorable so I don't have recipes to offer, but I did a couple of times make an Old Fashioned with the BT White Dog, using a melange of more old-time kinds of bitter (more soft, Peychauds-type stuff), minimal ice, and nutmeg vs lemon. Not a blockbuster but it sure was interesting. To my palate the BT White Dog has a distinct hazelnut note (or the sample I had did), and I think hazelnutty qualities work well with orange liqueurs. Not sure if that helps but there you go.


Andy Arrington

Journeyman Drinksmith

Twitter--@LoneStarBarman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My only experience with white dog was a bottle of Isiah Morgan Rye Whiskey that I bought in West Virginia a couple years ago. I didn't have much success mixing with it either. Straight, I found it to be odd--kind of grassy and earthy. bostonapothecary's suggestions sound promising so I might give those a shot. I've never had 'corn likker' so I can't comment on that. I suspect the surge in sales is due to the novelty of the stuff. I can't imagine it would achieve any kind of lasting popularity. I don't think any whiskey distilleries should cancel their barrel orders and tear down their maturing warehouses just yet!


Mike

"The mixing of whiskey, bitters, and sugar represents a turning point, as decisive for American drinking habits as the discovery of three-point perspective was for Renaissance painting." -- William Grimes

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My only experience with the dog was at a Slow Food event, where a local gastropub was mixing up Tuthilltown corn whiskey with just a little sugar and lemon. I was expecting alcohol and heat and not much else, so I was surprised at home much grain flavor came through. If my budget were more expansive I'd probably indulge in a bottle, but I think Mike's comment that novelty is driving much of the interest at present is accurate. It'll be interesting to see whether it settles into a comfortable space alongside the rye and bourbon, or fades back into the hills again . . . .

Jim


"The thirst for water is a primitive one. Thirst for wine means culture, and thirst for a cocktail is its highest expression."

Pepe Carvalho, The Buenos Aires Quintet by Manuel Vazquez Montalban

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our local Finger Lakes Distilling produces a "corn whiskey" called Glen Thunder that is sweet-ish and quite tasty, but maybe not for sipping. They suggest making Bloody Marys with it, which I can see working. I have yet to buy a bottle to experiment with though.


Edited by Corinna (log)

Corinna Heinz, aka Corinna

Check out my adventures, culinary and otherwise at http://corinnawith2ns.blogspot.com/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Two things to report. First, the Buffalo Trace Mash #1 does, indeed, work as a sipper, though your head has to be in the right place. A pale ale to the left helps as well.

I found a good cocktail for white dog, from Jim Romdall at Vessel via Paul Harrington's cocktailchronicles.com blog. They urge a more rye-based white dog than I've got, so I went with the potent-but-corny Buffalo Trace:

The Bumpass Hound

2 oz rye (Rittenhouse BIB)

1/2 oz white dog (Buffalo Trace Mash #1)

1/4 oz Fernet Branca

1/4 oz simple (I used a scant oz of gum syrup)

dash Angostura bitters

orange twist, for garnish

Stir; strain; up.


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fiddling some more with the BT white dog, which I'm really growing to like. When I had a sip tonight, I realized that the corn in it was evoking tequila for me somehow. Warning: this is one big glass of booze, but I think it's very interesting, a kind of molé tamale effect:

New Dog, Old Tricks

1 1/2 oz Buffalo Trace White Dog Mash #1

1 1/2 oz Herradura Añejo

1 oz Cointreau

3 dashes Bittermens xocolatl bitters

1 dash demerara syrup

Stir, strain, orange twist.

Next time, I might do 1 white dog and 2 tequila....


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That sounds lovely Chris. I find the BT white dog to be about as easy to work with as Grappa. Acknowledging its funk with Herradura, demerara, and chocolate seems like a good approach.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

White dog and white whiskey does seem to be hot. Perhaps an attempt to cut into the vodka market? Of course white dog is also common among smaller "craft" distilleries" to try to make some money until aged spirits mature. But now more of the big boys seem to be jumping in with both feet.

I just got a bottle of the new Jack Daniels Unaged "Tennessee" Rye. I was fully prepared to dislike it but rather enjoyed it as a sipper more than the few other White Dogs I have tried. It is a 70% rye, 18% corn, 12% malted barley mashbill and must of it will go into making a true aged JD "Tennessee" rye whiskey. I do dislike one thing though. The price is a remarkably high $50 for a bottle this not only is it unaged but it is cut to 40% ABV . But I sucked it up and bought one and Jack Daniels mania will no doubt make it successful.

This is unlike Dickel who is charcoal mellowing an aged rye sourced from MGPI in Indiana (which is the same source as the rye found in Templeton and Bulleit for example). I have not yet bought the Dickel but a few people I know who have tried it seem to really like it especially as a mixer. The charcoal filtering seems to make a difference in the taste.

Next to come is "Jacob's Ghost", a white spirit from Jim Beam that is aged for a year but has been filtered to be a white spirit. Kinda odd so for the moment I don't plan to pursue that one.

Anyway, back to the JD. Its taste is a little sweet with a strong rye/sourdough bready component and a bit of maltiness to me. Quite sippable if you can choke back the price.

JD 2.JPGJD 1.jpegJD 3.jpeg


Edited by tanstaafl2 (log)

If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...

~tanstaafl2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The distillers are laughing all the way to the bank.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The distillers are laughing all the way to the bank.

Yeah, they have been doing that for some time now. Been doing it with vodka and to a lesser degree gin for years so I guess now that the bad ol' days for brown spirits, especially bourbon and rye whiskey, seem to be behind us for the moment it is their turn as well. Which is a bit ironic since the white dogs by definition aren't brown...


If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...

~tanstaafl2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Awesome bottle and label. Shame about the price.

Seems that JD know what they're doing though: the plebs get Honey Whiskey and the geeks get White Whiskey. Cynical, but funny.


The Dead Parrot; Built from the ground up by bartenders, for everyone:

Monkey Shoulder Ultimate Bartender Champions, 2015

Twitter

Instagram

Untappd

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
my favorite ways to use white dogs in drinks ends up looking like this:

1 oz. ransom old tom gin

.5 oz. wasmund's rye spirit

1 oz. bianco vermouth

.5 oz. brandymel honey liqueur

I've just grabbed a bottle of Wasmund's from the bargain bin (half off at $19.99!) and am giving it a go. Perhaps it's my time spent smoking meats, but the applewood is the strongest note in a pretty cacophonous jam session, which makes this Ransom pairing seem smart. I've no Brandymel so I'll have to fiddle with subbing there....

Any other thoughts for this youngster?

1 person likes this

Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
my favorite ways to use white dogs in drinks ends up looking like this:

1 oz. ransom old tom gin

.5 oz. wasmund's rye spirit

1 oz. bianco vermouth

.5 oz. brandymel honey liqueur

I've just grabbed a bottle of Wasmund's from the bargain bin (half off at $19.99!) and am giving it a go. Perhaps it's my time spent smoking meats, but the applewood is the strongest note in a pretty cacophonous jam session, which makes this Ransom pairing seem smart. I've no Brandymel so I'll have to fiddle with subbing there....

Any other thoughts for this youngster?

I'd sub any amaro you've got in there it will be a nice drink. I had a lot of fun with the Wasmund's. I can't believe it got closed out. Not enough people have learned to use the white dogs IMO.


abstract expressionist beverage compounder

creator of acquired tastes

bostonapothecary.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fooling around with my Buffalo Trace White Dog Rye, I decide on a simple whiskey sour as a first experiment. I did

 

1.5 Oz White Dog

0.75 Oz Lemon Juice

0.5 Oz Rich Turbinado Syrup (Fat, or a skinny 0.75)

1 ds Boker's Bitters

 

I love the character of this whiskey. It reminds me of a milder genever, with some malty funky, but it has the fruitiness of a white rum. It worked great in this cocktail, more akin to a daiquiri than a whiskey sour. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Correct me if i am wrong please but does 'white dog' refer to any whisky/whiskey that has not been aged?

 

If so, surely this is basically similar to vodka? Could this not be transformed into a Gin style spirit by infusing with Juniper or other spices (pepper even)? or is that not the point of white dog? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vodka is distilled to a very high proof, removing most of the impurities (i.e., flavors) and leaving a spirit that's very close to being just ethanol and water. 

 

Whisk(e)y and other flavorful spirits are distilled to a much lower proof, which is why white tequilas and rums taste like, well, tequila and rum, and not vodka. (Bacardi excepted.) Unaged spirits don't all taste like vodka, and oak-aged vodka won't taste exactly like whiskey, or Cognac, or aged rum. 

 

With whiskey white dog, you get a lot of the raw grain flavor of the mash, without years of oak contact to temper it. 

1 person likes this

DrunkLab.tumblr.com

”In Demerara some of the rum producers have a unique custom of placing chunks of raw meat in the casks to assist in aging, to absorb certain impurities, and to add a certain distinctive character.” -Peter Valaer, "Foreign and Domestic Rum," 1937

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.