The days since April 7 have been something of an unofficial “Star Trek” convention at the NoCo distillery, according to co-owner and master blender Sebastien Gavillet. Fans flocked to the Fort Collins liquor maker and flooded Gavillet’s phone and inbox in hopes of buying a bottle of whiskey which was featured in last Thursday’s episode of the spin-off “Picardy”.
“It was a scene in a bar. One of the actresses, the bartender, asks (character Raffaela “Raffi” Musiker) what she wants and for about two seconds you see the bottle there,” said Gavillet.” Then she says ‘club soda.’ I wish she said bourbon.
According to Den of Geek, the bourbon placement is a nod to Raffi’s history of drug addiction and the scene shows how she avoids relapsing. The whiskey in question is NoCo’s Bourbon II and while it’s not Raffi’s drink of choice, his cameo was enough to ignite the Trekkies’ thirst – and the spirit isn’t even quenched yet.
According to Gavillet, who is also a winemaker, a regular at NoCo Distillery works in product placement and asked several years ago to feature one of his wine bottles with a futuristic label. Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit and halted the production of the TV show. The collaboration has been filed, Gavillet said.
About six months ago, another product placement opportunity presented itself, this time for a whisky. He’s had other products placed on TV shows before, but none have garnered such a fervent response.
“It has to do with how long he was on the scene,” he said. “Also, many people who want the bottle used to live in Fort Collins and no longer live there. They were excited about it and wanted relatives to go buy it.
The mash bill includes corn, rye and barley, which NoCo then triple distills for a “cleaner, smoother” flavor profile with notes of citrus, nutmeg, oak, caramel and of vanilla,” said Gavillet. In the coming months he will blend the bourbon and move it into new secondary American oak barrels for an additional three months of aging before bottling and hosting a launch party towards the end of the year.
Like all of NoCo’s spirits, Bourbon II is a small batch release with less than 500 bottles that will be available for purchase around the price of $100. Due to the level of interest, fans must fill out a form on the NoCo Distillery website and enter a lottery for the chance to purchase a bottle.
“I believe in quality over quantity,” Gavillet said. “Our goal is to have a cult following like ‘Star Trek’ does, where (fans) know that any product they buy from us is good or we won’t release it.”