December 09, 2020

Milk and Honey? Nope--Milkman and Yummy!

Growing up in Wisconsin, nearly everyone I knew either had a milkman, or was a milkman. And by that last bit, I mean was a farmer.

Mornings were either “rise from bed at 6, throw on your robe, and gather the two or three bottles of full fat milk sitting on your front stoop,” or “rise from bed at 4:30, throw on your barn clothes, and go milk the 150 cows waiting to fill all those bottles for tomorrow’s front stoop deliveries.”

Whichever version you experienced, milk was everywhere, and the milkmen were held in high regard.

This might explain why I am incredibly nostalgic when we here at Reservoir release another scrumptious barrel of Holland’s Milkman.

The process to make this silky liquid confection is one involving collaboration from our friends at Ardent Craft Ales—an award-winning brewery that is spitting distance from Reservoir Distillery in our cozy Richmond neighborhood called Scott’s Addition.

Ardent snagged a 53 gallon ex-bourbon barrel and filled it with their chocolaty imperial milk stout. Once they dumped the stout, they rolled that beautiful barrel to our front door where we then immediately filled it with 15% wheat, 70% corn, and 15% rye whiskies from 2 ½ year old 5 gallon barrels. We then tucked it away in our warehouse allowing it to snooze through the headlines of nearly two years. The milk stout that previously seeped into the bourbon-soaked wood then mingled and married with the blend of our whiskies, creating mouth coating, soul warming flavors of milk chocolate and butterscotch.

When you pass a glass of the Milkman beneath your nose, notice the sweet pipe tobacco as the childhood memories of a Tootsie Roll tug at the back of your mind. Let your tongue dance with the touch of hot pepper spice and finally be lulled with the warmth of a deeply rich cocoa finish.

With the bliss of 252 bottles from that 107-proof barrel, we feel confident we have enough to share at least through the start of this winter season. You can find a bottle to warm up your holiday spirits from our online shop, or by popping on down to the distillery and finding some season’s greetings in person.

As I spend a minute or two studying the Milkman’s lovely label, I am reminded of those days of old seeing Mr. Holland dressed in his sparkling white milkman’s digs and carrying his morning delivery up to everyone’s front stoop. But I have to say, if my childhood milkman’s bottles were filled with Reservoir’s milk stout finished bourbon, his daily orders would have tripled across the board.

Raise a glass with us in a heart-warming toast to December, and remember to ask yourself, Got Milkman?

Cheers!