Jeff Kissel

I’ve played golf my whole life, but in recent years have gained a new appreciation for playing interesting golf courses which led me to this site. I grew up near St. Louis, MO, USA playing daily-fee courses and cut my teeth in college at Purdue’s Birck Boilermaker Kampen Course, a brutal Pete Dye creation, and Ackerman Hills Course, a Bill Diddel parkland gem (sadly no longer existing), before spending time living in the Maryland/DC area. My appreciation for great classical architecture was kindled by a chance encounter and 2-year love affair with Annapolis Golf Club, a 9-hole Charles Banks layout that had fallen into some disrepair and also sadly no longer exists, and was cemented after experiencing the spectacular Lawsonia Links. I am now a member of Lake Forest Country Club near St. Louis (#18 in Missouri!). While not a magical unicorn as the picture shows, I do like loud golf outfits and can frequently be seen in very bright colors.

Reviews


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Capitol Hill (Judge) 01/10/2019

10th Alabama - Best in Area
Of the four courses on the Robert Trent Jones Trail in Alabama that I’ve played – only three of which are ranked on this site – Capitol Hill’s Judge course was my least f...

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Deerfield 29/08/2019

9th Delaware - Best in Area
For a course of its era, I rather liked Deerfield. It was playable and enjoyable, albeit somewhat unmemorable. The course sits in a particularly hilly area, even for nort...

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Highland at Primland 28/08/2019

6th Virginia - Best in Area
Driving to Primland is very much like going to another world. From the northeast on the appropriately named Busted Rock Road, you climb and climb through a dense forest f...

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Country Club of Charleston 27/08/2019

22nd South Carolina - Best in Area
Seth Raynor built two classic golf courses in the Charleston, SC area in the 1920s; Country Club of Charleston may pale in exposure to its more famous neighbor, Yeamans H...

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Bellerive 07/08/2019

2nd Missouri - Best in Area
When the 2018 PGA Championship was awarded to Bellerive in my hometown, I had to go see the event. After all, I attended the 1992 PGA there as a kid, and played the cours...

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Hotchkiss 26/03/2019

30th Connecticut - Best in Area
I was a bit surprised to see Hotchkiss School's course ranked on this site. Its history is fascinating and it was a truly special experience for me as a pilgrimage to the...

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Spyglass Hill 20/03/2019

10th California - Best in Area 73rd USA Ranking 84th North America Ranking
It’s a good course, but not great. The first five holes are unique, majestic, and supremely enjoyable. The next thirteen are somehow both extremely challenging and extrem...

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Pebble Beach 19/03/2019

2nd California - Best in Area 9th USA Ranking 9th North America Ranking 17th World Ranking
Growing up in the ‘80s and ‘90s, Pebble Beach was *it* - the pinnacle of public golf in the United States. Thirty of the top fifty public courses on Golf Digest’s 2018 ra...

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Tobacco Road 19/03/2019

9th North Carolina - Best in Area
Mike Strantz was one of golf architecture’s greatest geniuses. Prior to my day at Tobacco Road I had never played one of his courses, but had been salivating at the thoug...

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Belvedere 20/02/2019

20th Michigan - Best in Area
Northern Michigan in the summertime is quite possibly the most pleasant place on Earth, with all sorts of activities geared towards the delightful climate: boating, hikin...

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University of Michigan 03/01/2019

19th Michigan - Best in Area
Having played this course 20 years ago, it’s almost hard to justify a review, but I remember the course well enough, so here goes! It’s a parkland-style course on a hill...

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Birck Boilermaker (Kampen) 31/12/2018

16th Indiana - Best in Area
“Ever grateful, ever true.” Purdue University is a special place to me, one where I spent nearly seven years of my life. The golf courses at Birck Boilermaker Golf Comple...

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Whistling Straits (Irish) 17/12/2018

10th Wisconsin - Best in Area
It’s no Straits, that’s for sure. The Irish Course has bentgrass fairways and bluegrass rough, as opposed to the fescue found on the Straits Course. The fairways and gree...

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Blackwolf Run (River) 17/12/2018

6th Wisconsin - Best in Area
Beautiful conditions, lovely scenery, weird routing. Blackwolf Run is at the American Club, a high-end resort with all the trimmings. The River course sits mostly in a va...

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Ozaukee 13/12/2018

25th Wisconsin - Best in Area
A parkland style layout in the northern suburbs of Milwaukee, Ozaukee is a more subtle Langford & Moreau creation in terms of severity of the green complexes and surround...

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Erin Hills 05/12/2018

5th Wisconsin - Best in Area
The 2017 U.S. Open highlighted the roller coaster glacial landforms of this central Wisconsin layout, but as the course was soft and the wind was not blowing, the scores...

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