Here is the press release, straight from the barrel’s mouth:
FRANKFORT, FRANKLIN COUNTY, KY (Sept. 19, 2017) Whiskey lovers rejoice, Buffalo Trace Distillery is releasing its 2017 Antique Collection. The highly anticipated collection will once again feature five limited-release whiskeys of various ages, recipes and proofs. Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley notes, “The team had another great year with the Antique Collection. From distillation, to barrel selection, to bottling, this year’s collection showed very well. I was particularly excited about the William Larue Weller with its extra richness, and the Eagle Rare 17 seemed more rounded and full of flavor. None of these disappointed.”
(Note from Professor Cocktail: For addition information on the individual bottles, please visit my post on the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection.)
Here’s what fans can expect this year:
George T. Stagg
The powerhouse favorite of the Antique Collection, George T. Stagg weighs in at 129.2 proof this year. Past releases of this uncut and unfiltered bourbon have won many top awards, including “5 Stars – Highest Recommendation” by F. Paul Pacult’s The Spirit Journal. This year’s release contains bourbon from barrels filled in the spring of 2002. This batch contained 309 barrels, a few more than last year. Storage location of these barrels varied across warehouses C, K, M and Q. This whiskey tastes of expresso, chocolate fudge and tobacco.
William Larue Weller
The Antique Collection’s uncut, unfiltered, wheated recipe bourbon is William Larue Weller. Previous editions of this wheater have won many accolades, including a Double Gold Medal at the 2016 San Francisco World Spirits Competition and “Bourbon of the Year” by Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2017. The 2017 offering was distilled in the winter of 2005 and aged in Warehouses D, I, and P. This bourbon registers in at 128.2 proof. The bold flavors include toffee, marshmallow and leather.
Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye
Thomas H. Handy is the uncut and unfiltered straight rye whiskey. Previous editions of this whiskey have been named “World Whisky of the Year” by Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible and “World’s Best American Whiskey” by Whisky Magazine. This year’s Handy was distilled in the spring of 2011; aged on the third, fourth and fifth floors of Warehouses K, L, and Q, and weighs in at 127.2 proof. The flavor is described as fig, allspice and cinnamon.
Eagle Rare 17 Year Old
The previous edition of this bourbon was honored with a Silver Outstanding Medal at the 2017 International Wine and Spirits Competition. The 2017 edition has been aging on the first, second and third floors of Warehouses C, K and P. This 90 proof bourbon was aged for seventeen years and tastes of oak, tobacco, toffee and vanilla.
Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old
Last year Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old received “4 Stars – Highly Recommended” by F. Paul Pacult’s The Spirit Journal. This 2017 straight rye whiskey release has notable flavors of leather, clove and all-spice. The barrels for this whiskey were filled in the spring of 1998, and then put into a stainless steel tank in 2016 to stop further aging and evaporation.
The Antique Collection was introduced more than a decade ago and has become a cult favorite among whiskey connoisseurs. Since 2000 these whiskeys have garnered numerous awards from such notable publications as Whisky Advocate Magazine, Spirit Journal, and Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible.
The 2017 Antique Collection whiskeys will be available in limited quantities this October. Suggested retail price is $90 per bottle. For more information visit http://www.buffalotracedistillery.com/brands/antique-collection.