Speakers & Seminars

Seminar sessions will start at 7:30pm, 8:15pm, 9:00pm. Seating for the sessions is limited. The seminar rooms are located in the hallway with coat check and the room elevators.
Previous Speakers & Seminars


Seminar Room 1

Lux Row Distillers: Real Roots, Real Family, Real Products

Phillip Lux
Lux Row Distillers Ambassador

Real Roots—Info surrounding our new state-of-the-art distillery in Bardstown, KY the heart of bourbon country, now an official stop on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail
Real Family—Lux Row Distillers is family owned and operated, honoring our founder’s legacy
Real Products—We will educate seminar attendees on our award-winning portfolio, and Philip will conduct a tasting similar to the one held at the distillery

Seminar Room 2

Barrel to Glass

Jackie Zykan
Master Taster and Master Bourbon Specialist, Old Forester

Jacquelyn Zykan, Old Forester’s Master Bourbon Specialist, ‘speaks bourbon’ fluently. Her vast knowledge from a decade behind the bar brings great insights but her background in Biology and Chemistry along with her CSS training and extensive work within the whisky category gives her multi-layered expertise for this brand. She has been published globally for industry insights, cocktail strategies, as well as brand education. Serving as the face of the brand, she travels the world sharing the story of Old Forester’s production and history. Jacquelyn conducts master level trainings globally, leads the single barrel private selection program and innovative licensed expansions of the brand, as well as oversees brand drink strategy across all platforms.

Seminar Room 3

Crown Royal – A Glimpse of the Future

Stephen Wilson
Director of Whisky Engagement, Crown Royal

Join Crown Royal’s Director of Whisky Engagement, Stephen Wilson, for a behind the scenes look at Canada’s Top Selling Whisky. You’ll have the opportunity to sample unique distillates and maturates from Crown Royal’s Gimli distillery, along with a few surprise whisky experiments. In addition, this seminar will focus on the history and craftsmanship of Crown Royal and how our current distillers and blenders carry on the tradition that started back in 1939. Expect an evening filled with good conversation, good people and great whisky!


Seminar Room 1

Explanation of an Independent Bottler

William Lipp
Brand Ambassador, Alexander Murray & Company

Alexander Murray: A brief introduction and history to the art of secondary bottling/independent bottlers in Scotland. How casks are selected for bottling, from which distillery and what taste profile? Removing the myths and misnomers of Scotch surrounding the tasting, selecting and bottling of distillery casks by independent bottlers.

Seminar Room 2

Wood Makes Whiskey

Rick Edwards
National Ambassador – The Distillers Collection, Pernod Ricard

Pernod Ricard USA America hired Rick in 2007 to be Brand Ambassador for The Glenlivet after he trekked throughout Scotland for over 10 years working at several distilleries in various positions and after attending the Chivas Brothers’ Master Blenders Course at the Strathisla Distillery in 2009 and the Irish Whiskey Academy at the Midleton Distillery just this year. He now represents the company’s entire portfolio of single malt and single pot whiskeys. On the short list for the Whisky Magazine Whisky Brand Ambassador of the Year in 2015, he has been featured in other trade publications. Rick also judges spirit competitions and is a familiar face on whiskey panels. He frequently returns to Hollywood, starring as facilitator of celebrity whiskey tastings.

Seminar Room 3

Mastering The Manhattan

Bobby “G” Gleason
Jim Beam Master Mixologist

The Manhattan. The King of Whiskey cocktails. Join Master Mixologist Bobby “G” Gleason as he shares the stories and guides you through a tasting of each component as you build your Manhattan. Brought to you by Knob Creek & Knob Creek Rye.


Seminar Room 1

The Aging Process of Bourbon: Factors and Influences

Dan Gardner
Four Roses Midwest Regional Sales Manager

As a thirty-eight-year veteran of the Bourbon industry in Kentucky, Dan has managed some of the largest and well-known brands and portfolios in the business. During this seminar, he will be discussing the influence of warehouse positioning, mash bill, yeast strain and barrel variation on the aging process of bourbon.

Seminar Room 2

Whisk(e)y: Past, Present, and Future

Taylor Hansen
Portfolio Ambassador
Eve Reddin
Teelings Irish Whisky Ambassador

We will have both ambassadors together presenting Dewars, Single Malts, and Teelings Irish whiskey while having dialogue on Scotch and Irish Whiskey. Great conversations with some great drams!

Being raised in Ireland, Irish Whiskey was a staple in Eve’s home. It was a tour of the Teeling Whiskey Distillery, that she fell in love with the Teeling Whiskey story & craft. To her, these were exceptional whiskies. She noted the craft and passion in the Teeling Whiskey creations. Eve will tour the states in 2018-2019 and she looks forward to meeting her fellow whiskey lovers and sharing her passion for the Teeling Whiskey Portfolio.

Chicago’s Bacardi Portfolio Ambassador Taylor Hansen is an avid Whisk(e)y enthusiast, who views the category as a child of Science and Art. A background in distilling, aging, cocktails, and simply enjoying a solid dram, has turned grain spirits into a true passion. A passion fueled not only by exquisite whisky, but the people that drink it. Good whisky is expensive, great conversation is priceless.

Seminar Room 3

Turning Barrels into Bucks: How to Run a Successful Single Barrel Program

Adam Harris
Bourbon Vivant
Dustin Parres
American Whiskey Ambassador, US and Gamlin Restaurant Group Corporate Bar Manager

Single barrels are described as “snowflakes,” because they’re truly one of a kind! At Gamlin Restaurant Group — among the world’s fastest sellers of Knob Creek Single Barrel (Gamlin Whiskey House) and home of the nation’s only single barrel rail (1764 Public House) — each single barrel is hand-selected by our team. Learn to educate and excite guests about single barrels, and understand how incorporating these spirits into your bar program boosts your bottom line. Attendees at “Turning Barrels into Bucks” will learn how to develop and run a successful single barrel program — including inventory management tips for an evolving menu; how to incorporate single barrel spirits into your signature drinks in a way that gets guests excited about your establishment’s unique spirit offerings; and how to maximize profits from the sale of those single barrel spirits (via your cocktail menu and retail offerings). Guests will also enjoy a single barrel whiskey tasting led by our friend Adam Harris, whiskey ambassador for Beam Suntory.