Leonard Riddle joined the Distillery in 1964. During his 56 years at Buffalo Trace, Leonard held various barrel warehouse positions. In 2011 he was promoted to warehouse operations manager, where he managed all of Buffalo Trace’s aging barrel inventory. His responsibilities included incoming barrel inspections, branding, filling, entry of filled barrels into exactly the right spot in the warehouse, barrel storage, leak hunting, warehouse temperature control, selection of barrels for withdrawal and development and maintenance of quality controls.
Working side by side for 40+ years with former team member Ronnie Eddins (deceased in 2010), Leonard was integral to the Experimental Whiskey program at Buffalo Trace. Together with Ronnie, Leonard pioneered experiments such as varying barrel char, twice barreling, barrel stave drying, usage of French Oak and other barrel wood aside from American Oak, and many, many more experiments.
In 2011, Buffalo Trace Distillery dedicated Warehouse “L” to Leonard in appreciation to his many years of service to the Distillery. Leonard passed away in 2020, but his impact on the bourbon industry will be felt for years to come.