The rumors are true, y’all; everything is bigger in Texas! We love football, and Austinites are obsessed with our Longhorns. I’ve attended my share of tailgate parties during my graduate school days at UT, but it has been a while since I participated at one done absolutely right.
Enter Stillhouse whiskey. Launched in February 2016 and already known as America’s finest 100-percent-clear corn whiskey, this cutting-edge spirit is not only the perfect addition to your favorite cocktails, it’s also delightful on the rocks or as a chilled shot. Unlike traditional brown whiskey on the market, Stillhouse is clear as water and surprisingly plays closer to a vodka, truly going against the grain to disrupt expectations.
Stillhouse has already become a critical darling after winning a gold medal at the 2016 New York World Wine & Spirits Competition, a Double Gold Award in the San Francisco World Spirit Competition, plus a Rosey Award, and a silver award at The One Show. Then it was time to introduce the whiskey to the masses, and to do that the Stillhouse National Tailgate Tour embarked on a six-week, 13,000-mile journey. Its one-of-a-kind can was introduced to the top college football games in the country including Tennessee, Indiana, Ohio, Wisconsin, Arizona, and finally Texas. The stainless-steel packaging goes where glass can’t. It is unbreakable, perfect for outdoor activities such as laying at the beach, camping, pool parties, sporting events, hunting, and fishing.
Distilled in Columbia, Tennessee, there are several features that make Stillhouse unique. The whiskey is offered in five flavors in addition to the original: Apple Crisp, Peach Tea, Coconut, Mint Chip, and Red Hot. My favorite cocktail at the tailgate party by far was the original whiskey swirled with Texas’ No. 1 cola, Big Red. It was a refreshing mixture of vanilla, lemon, and orange essence with a splash of clear corn whiskey on the rocks. The mobile tailgate unit was very easy to find in the sea of veteran tailgaters. Located across from the iconic 35-foot bronze star of the Bullock Texas State History Museum, the live DJ played dance music under a bright red tent. Longhorn fans patiently fell in line to get a glimpse of the party. But once in, this was the place to be.
On the left side stood a smoking grill you could smell from miles away, cooking up hamburgers and chicken breasts. There were piles of barbecue and a buffet line with all the fixings. On the right was a bright red Stillhouse backdrop for guests to take photographs, proving to the world that they were right in the middle of the action. Three mobile cocktail bars were serving unlimited shots and mixed beverages.
CEO and founder Brad Beckerman was front and center at all the tailgate parties. He was a first-class host, providing whiskey shot samples and shaking hands with guests. Beckerman shared why Stillhouse cocktails are easily mixed to make even a novice bartender feel like a professional. “Stillhouse is made with the proprietary mash bill of estate-grown corn and limestone water, distilled to perfection in authentic copper whiskey stills then charcoal-filtered resulting in a whiskey of superior quality and incredibly smooth taste,” Beckerman said.
His experience with cocktails dates back to bartending while attending the University of Florida. His palate has refined throughout the years, but he hasn’t lost the college spirit. “I wanted to go to the biggest college football programs in the nation. Set up, host a cool party and have a good time,” he said.
The Stillhouse National Tailgate Tour ended with a bang as the University of Texas upset the undefeated Baylor University during the last two seconds of the game. Cheers to a memorable party where Longhorns came together to eat, drink, and be merry. Hook ‘em!