Since opening Bourbon's Bistro in 2005, Jason has had an active single barrel program allowing him to work side-by-side with many of Kentucky's leading master distillers. Through those relationships, he not only has gained a tremendous amount of knowledge but also garnered the respect of those distillers. Jim Rutledge says: “If I could pick an understudy for J.W. Rutledge Distillery when it gets going it would be Jason. That is how much I respect his passion and his palate”.
The knowledge gained through these distillers combined with his overall passion for the industry grew into a desire for Jason to go from just selling whiskey to making whiskey.
JUDITH HOLLIS JONES
After spending 20 years in senior executive positions in the food industry with global brands, Judith Hollis Jones is using her business acumen to help grow Buzzard's Roost as CEO of the Louisville-based company.
In addition to her business knowledge, Judith brings a culinary approach to whiskey. Born and raised in Kentucky, she has a deep appreciation for the proud whiskey heritage. along with a love for all things food – cooking, baking, grilling, growing, and entertaining. Her food expertise has also landed her a position on the board of Les Dames d'Escoffier International where she interacts with culinary professionals from around the world.
Judith is responsible for building the business side of Buzzard’s Roost including supply, distribution, and investor relations. She’s also a culinary resource helping the team to develop food and whiskey pairings and one-of-a-kind cocktail recipes.
After visiting various distilleries in Kentucky, Phil was struck by the similarity between the rolling limestone landscapes surrounding them and those around the countryside near his home in England. It felt like a home away from home. It was on one of his many trips to Louisville where he met Judy and Jason, and whilst they all sat relaxing one evening enjoying each other’s company they realized they shared a common interest in what they were sipping - whiskey!
With their whiskey connection and shared entrepreneurial mindsets, they discussed the prospects of establishing their own whiskey brand founded on common and inclusive values of what that brand should enshrine. A plan was hatched to make Buzzard’s Roost a reality.
As a co-founder, Phil brings commercial insights he has gained from his career in corporate finance which includes work in the beverages & liquor sector.