The town and surrounding lands of Humble, Texas helped establish the Texas oil industry. More than 150 million barrels of oil have been pumped through the Humble oil fields since 1905. Much like the gold rush in California, the oil boom in Humble and the surrounding drew hardworking oil workers and their families in search of earning a living. It shaped the town and the people in it. Old Humble's owner Joseph Breda grew up on these lands. In fact, the distillery is only five minutes away from his old high school.
"I love the people in this community, it's my home. I only saw it fitting to pay homage to the history of this place."
A DISTILLING LEGACY
The distilling legacy of Old Humble began in the Netherlands in 1752, where Jean Phillipe Breda was born and became a vintner. Jean ventured to eastern France, where he raised his family, including a son who eventually hopped the pond and trekked his way through the United States to Natchitoches, Louisiana, in the early 1800s. He planted a vineyard and a peach orchard and became the first Breda to distill in America legally.
What Joseph discovered was a world he had no idea existed. Whiskey could have a depth and breadth of tastes and flavors and expressions. At this time, new distilleries were producing and selling well-crafted and distinguished whiskies that were vastly different than the standard industrial factory booze that was being pumped out and sold millions of gallons at a time.
"Whiskey doesn't have to taste the same. Prior to the prohibition it didn't taste the same. Thanks to the reinvigoration of craft distilleries, the character and quality of new whiskies are being explored outside of big brands."
Joseph started hosting whiskey tastings as market research. This helped pave the way toward opening his distillery. After two years of tastings, a lot of pondering, and a fortunate change in local laws, the Old Humble Distilling Company was born on a dram and a dream of making the best damn whiskey, period.
Fast forward some 220 years, and the Breda name still lives on, as does the tradition of distilling. Just like his ancestors, Joseph Breda began brewing beer and making wine. Winemaking required research and lots of wine tastings. Eventually, one of those wine tastings led to an invitation to a whiskey tasting.
"At this point I had never heard of a whiskey tasting, and, truth be told, wasn't even a big fan of whiskey. Like most people who don't like whiskey, I had never had one I liked. I'm always up for adventure, so I went along."