Desoto County News

KC Johns starts her own whiskey brand

Photo: Country-rock recording artist KC Johns with her “Thunder” mesquite smoked bourbon whiskey. (Courtesy photo)

Nashville recording artist KC Johns has announced a new venture she has started, as the DeSoto County native has started her own brand of whiskey.  Johns made the announcement in an email to her fans on Friday, Aug. 4, saying she has been working with a California distillery to start what is being called “Thunder.” 

“If you know me, y’all know I love whiskey!!” Johns wrote. “For the past couple months, I’ve been working with CALI Distillery in Gardena, California, trying several delicious custom flavors. And now, we introduce to you, Thunder, a flavor that I love and hope you love this Mesquite Smoked Bourbon Whiskey as much as I do!!!!”

Thunder is available to be ordered online on Johns’ homepages and at a website pop up.  

A limited number of bottles numbered and personally signed by Johns are available. Those will be available from the first opened cask. Order a bottle to drink and one to save.

Johns said her Thunder Smoked Mesquite Bourbon Whiskey is a collaborative creation of her and of Marni Witkin – Taste mistress at CALI Distillery.

Thunder starts as a high rye bourbon whiskey, small batch distilled and aged in New American Oak. It is based on CALI’s signature bourbon mash bill, 70-71 percent corn, 22 to 23 percent rye, and seven percent malted barley.

“When the bourbon is ready, we transfer it to an open topped barrel and add a healthy batch of Sonoran Mesquite,” Johns said. “Not mesquite flavoring, or kiln dried briquettes, but blackened, chunks of twisted mesquite branches charred in pits, the old fashioned way. This is the best grade of all natural “bar-b-que pit” mesquite.”

Johns added the mesquite deepens the flavor and shares its wonderful smoky aromas with the whiskey creating a unique spirit.

The name comes from Johns’ most-recent album of the same name. 

Order a bottle by clicking THIS LINK. For those who submitted pre-orders, those will be the first to ship this week.

Licensed bar owners are also reminded that they can start stocking Thunder. A private link is available for more information and can be requested by sending an email to

Johns remains on tour with dates in Kentucky, Washington state, and Wisconsin. She recently returned from a tour to Norway. She returns to perform at Fall Fest on the Square in Hernando on Sept. 21.  

KC Johns with her Thunder mesquite smoked bourbon brand of whiskey. (Courtesy photo)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *