Press Releases Whiskey

Van Winkle Bourbon Available Soon

This is great news for bourbon fans — the Van Winkles are back! Sadly, these are going to be very hard to find. (And if you do find any, it's going to be more expensive than the prices quoted below.) But there's a reason these are the most-hyped bourbons in the world. Whether or not they're worth the effort is something only you can decide. They are almost universally accalimed, though.

Van_winkleFinally, the wait is nearly over! Van Winkle bourbons will be back on shelves in late October.  The popularity of Van Winkle whiskeys remains unmatched, but still in short supply. Known for their smoother and sweeter flavor, Van Winkle bourbons are aged years longer than most others and garner an impeccable reputation among connoisseurs.  “When bourbon ages over 15 years, much is lost to the angel’s share.  Many barrels often yield less than 20 gallons, out of the original 53 gallons produced,” said Julian Van Winkle, president, Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery. “However, our patience creates bourbon with unrivalled flavor.”

Although Van Winkle bourbons have become increasingly popular worldwide in recent years, less is sent overseas than ever to allow more of this coveted bourbon to remain in the United States.  “Because demand has escalated so much here, we’ve decided to scale back exports to help supply our American fan base,” continued Van Winkle.

Furthermore, there will be more Old Rip Van Winkle 10 Year Old Bourbon at 107 proof. “We prefer the taste of our 10 year old bourbon at 107 proof. The rich flavor is compounded by the high proof,” added Van Winkle. “We’ll no longer bottle our 10 year old whiskey at 90 proof. Therefore, there will be more 107 proof available. For those who will miss the 90 proof Old Rip, we suggest adding a little more water to their glass. As Pappy used to say, ‘why ship all that water across the country!’”

The Van Winkle collection consists of several expressions. Suggested retail prices are as follows:

  • $39.99 – Old Rip Van Winkle Handmade Bourbon 10 Year Old 107 proof
  • $54.99 – Van Winkle Special Reserve Bourbon 12 Year Old
  • $69.99 – Van Winkle Family Reserve Rye Whiskey 13 Year Old
  • $79.99 - Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Bourbon 15 Year Old
  • $129.99 – Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Bourbon 20 Year Old
  • $249.99 – Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Bourbon 23 Year Old

The Van Winkle line of whiskeys has won a bevy of awards through the years, including 2010 “Spirit of the Year” from Wine and Spirits Magazine for Pappy Van Winkle 23 Year Old; “Best of Show” and “Best Whiskey” at the 2010 Los Angeles Wine and Spirits Competition; Gold medals at the 2011 and 2012 San Francisco World Spirits Competition; Best of Category, Small Batch Bourbon 11 Years or Older, 2012 Los Angeles International Wine and Spirits Competition; and 2012 Chairman’s Trophy Finalist: Extraordinary, Ultimate Recommendation at the Ultimate Spirits Challenge.

The Van Winkle Whiskeys will be available near the end of October, but please be mindful that supply is quite limited and bottles shall be hard to find in stores, bars and restaurants. They will be packed three bottles per case, rather than traditional 12 bottle cases.

Press Releases Whiskey

Buffalo Trace Distillery Releases 2012 Antique Collection

These bourbons receive almost universal acclaim each year. I haven't yet tried any, but I hope to change that soon.

At long last, Buffalo Trace Distillery
is releasing its 2012 Antique Collection in September. The much
anticipated collection will once again feature five limited-release
whiskeys of various ages, recipes and proofs. Here’s what ardent
fans can expect:

Eagle Rare 17 Year Old

The previous edition of this bourbon was honored with a Gold Medal at
the 2012 International Wine and Spirits Competition. The 2012 edition
was distilled in the spring of 1993 and has been aging on the 2nd,
3rd and 6th floors of Warehouses I and K.  After
nearly two decades of aging under its belt, it has been described as
dry and delicate, with hints of leather, almonds and tobacco.

George T. Stagg

The 2011 release of this perennial favorite was named the “Number
One Spirit in the World” by F. Paul Pacult in the 2012 Spirit
for the second year in a row, as well as the
“Second Finest Whiskey in the World” in Jim Murray’s
Whisky Bible
.  The 2012 George T. Stagg was found in
Warehouses H, I, K and L. This uncut, unfiltered bourbon was
distilled back in the spring of 1995 and weighs in at 142.8
proof—some strong stuff! This whiskey tastes of rich dark
chocolate, coffee and vanilla.

Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old

Last year’s release won a double gold medal at the San Francisco
World Spirits Competition.  This 2012 rye whiskey release was
aged in Warehouses K and is described as intense spice with
underlying sweetness and dry finish.

Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye

Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye is an uncut and unfiltered straight rye
whiskey. The 2011 edition was once again named “Rye Whiskey of the
Year” in Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible.
This year’s Handy was distilled in the spring of 2006, aged on the
fifth floor of Warehouse O and weighs in at 132.4 proof. The flavor
has been described as cinnamon, dark fruit, allspice, lingering. 

William Larue Weller

William Larue Weller is the Antique Collection’s uncut, unfiltered,
wheated recipe bourbon. The previous edition was the recipient of a
double gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. 
The 2012 offering was distilled in the spring of 2000 and aged on the
second and fourth floors of Warehouses I and P. This William Larue
Weller release registers in at 130 proof.  It tastes of dark
vanilla, almond and plum. 

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

“Every year the excitement and anticipation of these whiskeys
grows,” said Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley. “We’re excited
as well to finally be able to share them, and look forward to seeing
what critics and consumers alike think about them.” 

These Antique Collection whiskeys will
be available in limited quantities starting in late September. 
Suggested retail price is $70 each.


Press Releases Whiskey

Buffalo Trace Distillery Releases Col. E. H. Taylor, Jr. Rye Recipe Whiskey

Exciting news about a promising new rye whiskey.

E. H. Taylor ryeStraight Rye Whiskey has experienced a strong resurgence in the American whiskey landscape, yet Colonel E. H. Taylor, Jr. was making this style over 100 years ago. The latest offering from Buffalo Trace Distillery pays tribute to the former Distillery owner with a small batch, Bottled-In-Bond, 100 proof, straight rye whiskey from days long past.

An altogether different recipe and profile than Sazerac Rye, this recipe contains just rye and malted barley, no corn.  The result is an aroma full of dried fruit, black pepper, and touch of fresh dill. A small sip brings an array of flavors both sweet and savory with a terrific balance of dark spices and subtle caramel overtones. The finish is especially pleasing with an oaky dryness that lingers just long enough.

The Straight Rye Whiskey is the fifth in the line of the E. H. Taylor, Jr. collection of whiskeys. It joins the Old Fashioned Sour Mash Bourbon, Single Barrel Bourbon, Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Bourbon and Barrel Proof Bourbon that have all been released since early 2011.  Like the previous four releases, this whiskey will have very limited availability and will be packaged in a vintage label and canister reminiscent of Taylor’s bottles over one hundred years ago.

Taylor is widely considered one of the founding fathers of the bourbon industry, fighting for the Bottled-in-Bond Act of 1897, nearly three decades after he purchased the distillery that is known today as the Buffalo Trace Distillery. During his time, Taylor implemented several innovative methods still used today by Buffalo Trace, such as climate controlled aging warehouses. In addition to his bourbon interests, Taylor had political ties. He was the great-nephew of President Zachary Taylor and elected the mayor of Frankfort, state representative to the Kentucky General Assembly and a member of the State Senate.

The Colonel E.H. Taylor, Jr. Straight Rye Whiskey will be available in late August and will be released annually each year.  The suggested retail price is $69.99 for a 750ml bottle.