Distiller: An Inside Look at Nelson's Green Brier Distillery

More than its famous charcoal filtering, Tennessee whiskey is a category dominated by names: Jack Daniel and George Dickel. The name that was long forgotten though is Charles Nelson. His descendants, brothers Andy and Charlie, are working to change that.

At Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery in Nashville, Andy and Charlie Nelson have brought their triple great-grandfather’s distillery back to life. If Andy and Charlie sound familiar, you’re not mistaken. They’re behind the popular Belle Meade Bourbon lineup and its in-demand sourced and finished series, including Sherry CaskMadeira Cask, and Cognac Cask offerings.

This whole time though they’ve been patiently putting away barrels, distilled on their 750-gallon Vendome hybrid copper pot-still. “The genesis of the brand itself, our plan was always originally that we’ll start out laying down stock, and half the barrels that we fill will be 30-gallon, and the other half will be 53,” explains Andy Nelson. “And then slowly start releasing two year-old whiskey out of the 30 gallons, and let that kind of phase out for the 53-gallon four year-old when it’s ready.”

Initial dividends are now being paid in the form of First 108, a batch of two year-old Tennessee whiskey matured in a total of 108 30-gallon casks. The name also pays homage to the fact that 2017 marks 108 years since the original distillery’s closure due to state Prohibition in Tennessee in 1909. READ MORE