Beyond the Bottle

Gentle Ben uses a distillation process that combines art and science for a smooth tasting spirit.

Article by Memorial Lifestyle Staff

Photography by David Beckwith

Originally published in Cypress Lifestyle

Gentle Ben is an American bourbon based in Alvin, Texas, and was named the American Spirits Council of Tasters Double Platinum Award winner in 2022. The accolade recognizes the superior quality of the Gentle Ben brand, which is made possible by a revolutionary technology developed by Persedo. The company, founded by Ricky Ford, the creator of Gentle Ben, is dedicated to transforming the distilled spirits industry.

What distinguishes this brand from its competitors besides its numerous accolades and superior taste? Traditionally, the distilled spirits industry has relied on distillation and filtration methods to separate desirable and undesirable compounds or congeners in spirits. However, these methods come with high labor demands, energy consumption, and significant alcohol losses. Ford's father developed a basic apparatus designed to aerate distilled spirits. It inspired Ford to create a process that could elevate distilled spirits to a quality not yet achieved.

Ford contacted Dr. Benjamin Mosier, a Ph.D. chemist with extensive experience in microencapsulation and bubble dynamics, to analyze the specific compounds and congeners that Ford's father's process was removing. While they successfully removed a small amount of offensive volatile organic compounds, they lost a significant amount of proof in the process. 

Therefore, in 2007, they initiated a research program to develop and optimize a system for removing the compounds related to the offensive burn without losing ethanol.

Persedo's C.R.A.F.T. system offers a sharper, more innovative tool for minimizing specific undesirable congeners in distilled spirits and allows Gentle Ben to deliver a top-quality spirit that rivals others in the super-premium space. This is achieved through two controlled and precise steps, during which seven process parameters are carefully monitored.

According to Ford, consumers today demand the best in super-premium spirits. With the Persedo C.R.A.F.T. system, Gentle Ben offers a spirit with distinct qualities across its portfolio. First, it is soft and creamy on the palate. Second, it has minimal burn. Finally, it has enhanced 

distillate flavors. 

"The Persedo C.R.A.F.T. system has been validated by scientific analytics, but the best way to experience what it does for Gentle Ben is to visit our tasting room, see the process firsthand, and conduct a taste test," says Ford. "Gentle Ben's secret ingredient is what's not in it – with no burn to hide, consumers can enjoy the full flavor of the spirit without the need for sugary mixers."

"Gentle Ben's secret ingredient is what's not in it – with no burn to hide, consumers can enjoy the full flavor of the spirit without the need for sugary mixers." – Ricky Ford

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