Picture the years Bob Dylan toured from country to country and stage to stage, closing the night with a glass of whiskey in hand. That’s a lot of whiskey tastings on his way to Grammys and a Nobel Prize.
“I’ve been traveling for decades, and I’ve been able to try some of the best spirits that the world of whiskey has to offer,” Dylan told the New York Times. The “gritty crooner” quietly made his way into the competitive liquor market with a trademark application for the term “bootleg whiskey.”
Photo from https://www.heavensdoor.com/
The creator of Angel’s Envy, Marc Bushala, took note of Dylan’s efforts and reached out to see if the two could collaborate. “We both wanted to create a collection of American whiskeys that, in their own way, tell a story,” Dylan said.
The development process wasn’t always easy, as Bushala explained to the Times. Dylan’s creativity and his way of describing what he liked and didn’t like got confusing. During a round of double-barreled whiskey sample tasting Dylan reportedly said something was missing from the selections. “It should feel like being in a wood structure,” he said.
Bushala and his team figured out how to translate that guidance, and the collaboration produced a 96-point Tennessee Bourbon, a 94-point straight rye whiskey and a 93-point double barrel whiskey under the brand Heaven’s Door, as in Dylan’s classic Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door.
“Dylan has these qualities that actually work well for a whiskey,” Mr. Bushala said. “He has great authenticity. He is a quintessential American. He does things the way he wants to do them. I think these are good attributes for a super-premium whiskey as well.”
Dylan’s creativity and artful influence is wrapped around every bottle in the form of iron gates. The designs were created by Dylan at his metalworking shop called Black Buffalo Ironworks. The original gates are made from objects collected from farms and scrap yards across America—everything from farm equipment, children’s toys, kitchen utensils and antique fire arms. They feature chains, cogs, axes and wheels.