Michter’s Master Distiller, Willie Pratt has over 40 years of experience in the whiskey industry with in-depth knowledge ranging from selection of grain, to distillation, to barreling and maturation. Prior to joining Michter’s, America’s first whiskey company, Willie spent his career at Brown-Forman where he co-chaired a special committee formed to study cooperage – the art of barrel construction – and to identify optimal distillation and aging conditions for among other things, whiskey taste, aroma, color and yields.
Willie is responsible for the distillation of Michter’s Whiskeys and their barreling, which is done at a lower proof than the industry standard despite the substantially increased cost. He also insists on storing Michter’s barrels in rare heat-cycled warehouses even though this results in the loss of nearly twice as much whiskey to evaporation as the “Angel’s Share.”
Good naturedly referred to as “Dr. No” by our salespeople, Willie is known for refusing to release whiskey for bottling until he feels it is just right, even though the whiskey may already be significantly older than the age stated on the label.
Willie Pratt is a proud native of Louisville, Kentucky where he, his wife Patsy, his children, grandchildren, and his great grandchildren live. Among Willie’s outside interests and hobbies are fishing in Florida, riding Harley motorcycles, and until recently when his parked plane was totalled on a runway, flying his Cherokee four-seater.