With the growth of single barrel and select barrel programs across the bourbon world, there has been a loss of appreciation for the importance of artful blending. At Black Button Distilling, we celebrate the craft that goes into blending great bourbon. With our unique process, we found an opportunity to invite enthusiasts like you to join the distilling team and blend your favorite expression of a Black Button Bourbon, through our Bespoke Bourbon Blending Program.
What bourbon are we blending?
Our signature Four Grain Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Mash Bill: 60% Corn • 20% Wheat • 11% Malted Barley • 9% Rye
Proof: Will range between 90-94 proof on average
Age: 3+ Years for all barrels in the blend
How does our Blending Program work?
Each aging barrel of our Four Grain Bourbon will have its own unique characteristics. A set of barrels that were distilled and filled at the same time, even if they have sat right next to each other in the warehouse, will age differently. That is why the skilled palates of our distilling team taste every barrel and decide if it is ready, and where it will end up. A barrel that is perfectly aged and ready to be blended will be categorized into one of four groups:
• Sweet - Predominant notes of honey, caramel, dried or fresh fruit
• Spice - Predominant notes of earthy spice, baking spice, peppery, citrus
• Oak - Predominant notes of dry oak, sweet young oak, mature rich oak
• Base - Notes of all the above characters, but balanced without any one flavor dominating
By categorizing each barrel by flavor profile and then combining consistent amounts of each batch to batch, we can consistently offer the best blend of our flagship Four Grain Bourbon. This also allows us to blend unique amounts of each tank, creating a Bespoke Bourbon to fit your palate.
Creating your Bespoke Blended Bourbon
You will work directly with our blend program manager and master distiller to craft your Bespoke Blend. Our team will gain an understanding of your palate and have you taste each characteristic tank on its own. From there, the fun and the science begin! You will taste a few different blends until your perfect Bespoke Bourbon is found. After that, our in house design team will craft a custom hangtag for you, and in just 8 short weeks your blend will be ready!
If you are unable to make it to the distillery, we are happy to make your blend virtually as well. Our blend program manager will be able to send you our palate survey, and craft samples based on your preferences. Then over a virtual call, we will taste together and decide the right blend for you!
If you are ready to craft your Bespoke Blend, please reach out to our Program Manager, Alex Hunnell at email@example.com
• • • Meet our Blending Team • • •
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In 2012, Jason founded Black Button Distilling. Black Button is Rochester’s first grain-to-glass distillery since prohibition. In the last few years, Jason has taken Black Button from a start-up distillery to a globally recognized force in the industry.
In 2021, Jason was recognized in Fast Company’s 5th Annual World Changing Ideas for his hand sanitizer work. Inc. Magazine listed BBD as one of New York’s Fastest Growing companies. The Wine Spirits and Education Trust has recognized Jason for being a key global influencer in the beverage industry, and in 2017, Jason was the fourth American to be inducted in the prestigious Gin Guild.
Master Distiller Jeff Fairbrother started his career in the craft beverage industry in 2013 at Abandon Brewing Company located in the Finger Lakes. After a few years of brewing beer, Jeff decided to try his hand at crafting spirits and joined the Black Button Distilling team in 2015.
Jeff has spent his time at Black Button mastering the craft. In 2017, he was recognized as Warden Rectifier in the prestigious London-based international gin industry member body, the Gin Guild. He is one of only five current members of the Gin Guild in the United States. In 2019, Jeff officially became a Master Distiller and has run Black Button’s daily production ever since.
A Rochester native, Patrick Carroll received his two-year Viticulture degree from Finger Lakes Community College and subsequently followed the wine harvest around the world to places including Oregon and Australia. When he returned to Rochester in the summer of 2017, he applied his knowledge and skills to the craft of distilling at Black Button.
Starting at the bottom and working his way up, Patrick learned every aspect of of production, from bottling and labeling to equipment maintenance. After about a year, Patrick attended a distilling workshop at Cornell University, where he learned the technical theories behind how the stills work and was subsequently promoted to Assistant Distiller. In this role, he began to manage the barrel warehouses and oversee all mashing, fermentation and primary distillation for Black Button Distilling’s range of spirits.
Alex has been a member of the Black Button team since 2017 and held positions across the company. Starting as a bartender in Buffalo, he eventually became a member of our sales team managing the Buffalo region. When the pandemic started, Alex shifted once again and built our e-commerce program bringing Black Button products direct to customers nationwide. In 2021, Alex took over the management of our Single Barrel and Bespoke Blending program, both on the sales side, and leading bourbon experiences for groups across the country. Today Alex has fully shifted out of sales in Buffalo to join the marketing department as the E-Commerce Marketing Lead, and continues to manage the Single Barrel and Blending program with our production team.
If you are ready to craft your Bespoke Blend, please reach our to our Program Manager, Alex Hunnell at