OMAHA, NEBRASKA — “I’ve had most of the whiskey up there. I have over 40 different bottles at my house,” Jeff was reported saying on a recent trip to a local fine dining restaurant Ampersand. “I’ve never seen that bottling of Willett though. Can I take a look at it?”
When Jeffrey Hampton, 52, steps up to the bar, he is quick to assess the talent. We’re not talking about the bar staff; we’re talking about the talent up on the shelf. His eyes are immediately drawn to that beautiful amber hue glowing from the American Whiskey shelf. When Jeffrey Hampton steps up to the bar, he’s ready to hold connoisseur court as the witness, jury, and judge.
“This one seems too young” he says, taking the liberty to remove the cork from the bottle. “What about that one?” he asks his bartender at Ampersand. This exchange goes on for 3 more bottles. He is restless at the lack of selection to meet his connoisseur needs and settles on a bottle of cask-strength wheated bourbon from the top shelf. He makes a point to mention that he has this particular expression at home.
“Great, I’ll just take that one, splash of Diet Coke,” he said while looking around self-satisfactorily. “Two straws, please.”