Kansas Clean Distilled Whiskey Kicks the Brown Out of Brown Spirits

by The Drink Nation on Mar 7, 2013 in Liquor
Kansas Clean Distilled Whiskey Kicks the Brown Out of Brown Spirits

“The problem with whiskey is that it's aged,” says marketing copy for relatively new-to-market Kansas Clean Distilled Whiskey. If you drink liquor at all on a regular basis, that statement might make you do a double-take. In fact, the company’s entire schtick is based on the assumption that whiskey is considered an old man’s drink, and that it’s too harsh for young, hip folks to really like.

That idea doesn’t jibe with whiskey’s recent and ongoing meteoric rise in popularity — the exact bump that led Maker’s Mark to worry about its dwindling-faster-than-expected supply and consider watering it down. The brown spirits trend is not exactly new, either. A National Restaurant News report from 2010 had this to say on the topic:

“If you’ve been paying attention at all to the cocktail circuit of late, you’ll be aware that brown spirits — whiskeys, rums, brandies and the like — are on a bit of a tear these days.”

Apparently Rochester, NY-based Fabulous American Beverage (maker of Kansas) has not been paying attention of late. However, it is true that vodka remains the top-selling spirit in the U.S., so despite the cachet and hipness of whiskey, producing a lighter spirit lets a company tap into a larger market.

Kansas is light. It's made from amber winter wheat, a lighter grain than the corn, barley or rye most brown spirits start with. It's then distilled in a column still instead of the usual pot still. A column still is what is usually used to make vodka, because it allows for filtration to a clear, clean spirit. And that’s what appears to come out of Kansas’ still; the company says the distillate is combined with a bit of non-filtered “artisanal” whiskey before being bottled.

So, as Food Republic pointed out, the company has basically created a whiskey-flavored vodka. Kansas even goes so far as to suggest that regular whiskey doesn’t work well in cocktails, while simultaneously ragging on vodka for being flavorless. Is this a “best of both worlds” or a “can’t have your cake and eat it too” scenario?

We haven’t tasted Kansas yet, so can’t pass judgement on that side of things. However, the whole brand has a whiff of trying too hard. For example, the bottles are so unique they are partly made in a boutique perfume bottle factory. What, exactly, is a "boutique" factory? And also, the font. The company wants you to notice that the name of the whiskey is also the logo (wow!). And that the font used was discovered at myfonts.com (wow, again?). Oh, and also that it was kerned by the font’s original designer (maybe kind of cool, but we’re over it already).

If you like big sunglasses, bikinis, berets and don’t mind being blatantly led down an uberhip promotional path (or mind an all-Flash website), Kansas whiskey is probably for you. If you actually like whiskey, probably not.

Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
The Shark Week Drinking Game

The Shark Week Drinking Game

This year, one of cable TV's longest-running programs celebrates its 29th anniversary. Enjoy it to the fullest with this handy game. Shark Week starts...read more ›

by The Drink Nation Jun 26, 2016
A Spanish Winemaker is Producing Blue Wine

A Spanish Winemaker is Producing Blue Wine

We've all heard of red wine and white wine. But now, we can get what we've always dreamed of when looking through a wine list: blue wine. ...read more ›

by Ryan Hudak Jun 21, 2016
Devil's Creek Brewery Is Open in Collingswood

Devil's Creek Brewery Is Open in Collingswood

Collingswood's first brewery, Devil’s Creek Brewery, opened its doors recently on May 21 at its new spot on Haddon Avenue....read more ›

by Erica Bauwens Jun 2, 2016
SPONSORED
Craft Beer Garden and Restaurant Comes to Cooper River

Craft Beer Garden and Restaurant Comes to Cooper River

Cooper River Park in Pennsauken may be known for weddings and crew races, but a new beer garden is giving craft beer lovers a new excuse to check out ...read more ›

by Erica Bauwens Jun 2, 2016
Tonewood Brewing Is Coming to Oaklyn

Tonewood Brewing Is Coming to Oaklyn

Oaklyn is getting a brand new brewery called Tonewood Brewing, which will be run by two brothers, with a projected opening date of Tuesday, June 7....read more ›

by Erica Bauwens Jun 2, 2016
Medford's Main Street Is Experiencing a Craft Beer Boom

Medford's Main Street Is Experiencing a Craft Beer Boom

Medford in Burlington County will soon be home to two craft breweries along their Main Street drag....read more ›

by Erica Bauwens May 18, 2016
The Inventor of St. Germain, Robert J. Cooper, Has Passed Away at 39

The Inventor of St. Germain, Robert J. Cooper, Has Passed Away at 39

The inventor of St. Germain passed away on Monday, April 25, 2016....read more ›

by Alexander Frane May 2, 2016
Make This Purple Cocktail To Honor Prince's Memory

Make This Purple Cocktail To Honor Prince's Memory

Make this delicious purple cocktail to honor Prince's memory....read more ›

by The Drink Nation Apr 21, 2016
This Late Night L.A. Restaurant is Serving Boozy Bowls of Classic Kids Cereal

This Late Night L.A. Restaurant is Serving Boozy Bowls of Classic Kids Cereal

Grab a boozy, late-night breakfast at L.A.'s newest concept....read more ›

by Alexander Frane Apr 19, 2016
Disney's Tower of Terror Is Getting a Bar

Disney's Tower of Terror Is Getting a Bar

Disney's Tower of Terror is getting its very own bar....read more ›

by Alexander Frane Apr 15, 2016
SPONSORED
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close