Posts Tagged Brown-Forman

Early Times 354 Bourbon Coming Soon

Brown-Forman announces the Early Times brand is returning to its bourbon roots with Early Times 354 Bourbon. Crafted with pure water, select grains, proprietary yeast and carefully distilled and matured in select oak barrels, it’s the newest (and in a way, the oldest) member of the Early Times family. After an absence as a bourbon in the US market since 1983, Early Times 354 joins Early Times Kentucky Whisky in an expansion of the presence of the famous Early Times brand.

At the tender age of 15, Jack Beam began working at his family’s distillery. In short order, he was running the operation and in 1860 built his own distillery at a place called Early Times Station, Kentucky. Beam named his whisky Early Times, both as a tribute to its place of origin and as a nod to the old-world craftsmanship that goes into making it. He believed in the “early times method” of whisky-making – mashing grain in small tubs, boiling the beer and whisky in copper stills over open fires. It’s an abiding belief that has stayed with the Early Times brand all along, continuing long after Early Times became part of the Brown-Forman family of brands in 1923.

By the 1950s, Early Times was the best-selling bourbon in the world. As the vintage advertising from that era proclaimed, Early Times is “the whisky that made Kentucky whiskies famous.” Steeped in bourbon history, Early Times Distillery’s federal permit, No. 354, is the longest held in Kentucky.

As the only distilling company to own its own cooperage, Brown-Forman changed Early Times from a Kentucky bourbon to a Kentucky whisky in 1983 – allowing the company to achieve a perfect mix of seasoned and new barrels and create the smooth, mellow taste of Early Times whisky.

“Early Times is the second oldest continually produced Kentucky whisky on the market – second only to Brown Forman’s Old Forester,” said Chris Morris, Brown-Forman Master Distiller. “Early Times 354 Bourbon takes as a part of its names the distillery’s famous permit number – 354. This is the longest held operating permit in Kentucky. Everything about Early Times 354 supports the brand’s historic past and reputation for great taste.”

Early Times 354 will launch an ad campaign to coincide with the product’s release in several trade magazines focused on a national, independent, blind preference taste test in which Early Times 354 was preferred to Jim Beam White Label by male, Jim Beam drinkers ages 25-55.*

“The results of the taste test were what really told us we had a winner,” said Joe Murray, Early Times Brand Manager. “Early Times 354 is a premium line extension offering a quality product, at an accessible price point, capitalizing on the growing number of consumers entering the bourbon category.”

With a unique retro-classic package similar to the 1930’s Early Times bottle, Early Times 354 will initially be sold in 17 U.S. markets with more to follow in 2011. Each bottle is presented at 80 proof with a suggested retail price of $15.99 for a 750ml bottle.

Tasting Notes for Early Times 354 Bourbon

Color   – deep amber

Aroma – spicy with sweet fruit, fresh oak and delicate corn notes underscored by a layer of

vanilla and caramel.

Taste    – a lively entry with spice, caramel and vanilla that melt into a mixture of fresh and

dried fruit notes.

Finish   – warm with subtle hints of apple and corn

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Early Times 150th Anniversary Release Revisits Old Times

Early Times Kentucky Whisky, first distilled in 1860 in Early Times Station, Kentucky, is a whisky known for its rich heritage and mild taste profile. To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the brand, Early Times Kentucky Whisky will release a one-time, limited release expression in a 375ml commemorative bottle.

Although the year 1860 congers up images of “early times” today, at the time, the brand’s original distillers believed the industry was turning too modern, too quickly, and wanted a brand that captured the “good old days.” Thus, the brand name Early Times was selected to remind consumers of the old-fashioned methods of making whisky – mashing grain in small tubs and boiling the beer and whisky in copper stills over open fires.

Closed by Prohibition, the distillery, brand and barrel inventory was acquired by medicinal whiskey permit holder Brown-Forman Distillers in 1923. Brown-Forman moved the production of Early Times to Louisville, Kentucky in 1935 where it has thrived to this day. Every drop is distilled under the late 1800’s permit number DSP – 354.

“This commemorative bottle celebrates the rich history of Early Times’ role as the second oldest continually produced whisky brand in America,” said Joe Murray, brand manager for Early Times. “While Early Times is now made with modern methods, its name still invokes images of the good old days and still provides a welcome reward at the end of a hard day’s work. As one of America’s top selling Kentucky Whiskies for the last 60 years it still lives up to its reputation as ‘The Whisky that made Kentucky Whiskies Famous.’

The Early Times 150th anniversary edition will come in a unique 375ml bottle and carry an Early Times retro 1920’s label. The distillery will produce only 3000 cases which will be available in 20 US states at a suggested retail price of $11.99.

“Early Times 150 is crafted to emulate the flavor profile the brand would have possessed in 1923 when it was acquired by Brown-Forman,” said Chris Morris, Brown-Forman Master Distiller. “Most whisky aficionados who have been treated to a prohibition-era medicinal whisky taste a late bottling. These contain whisky that was aged up to three times longer than the distiller planned. In 1923 Brown-Forman began bottling 5-6 year old Early Times as medicine. This bottling, with its light honey color, mellow oak, brown sugar, vanilla aroma and simple sweet corn, vanilla and faint butterscotch taste bring back the best of a by-gone time – an Early Times to remember.”

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Brown-Forman Changes Name of Blue Grass Cooperage, Open for Tours

B-F Cooperage BarrelLouisville, KY, July, 7, 2009 – Brown-Forman announced today it is opening the Brown-Forman Cooperage to the public for tours for the first time in its history. The Cooperage will also be re-named from Blue Grass Cooperage to Brown-Forman Cooperage to honor the parent company which continues the rich tradition of crafting barrels to this day.

The Brown-Forman Cooperage is where barrels are hand-crafted for the aging of spirits such as Jack Daniel’s, Woodford Reserve, Old Forester, Early Times, Canadian Mist, El Jimador and Herradura. Brown-Forman is the only spirits company in the world to make its own barrels, which are created from American white oak.

All Brown-Forman Cooperage tours must be setup in advance through Mint Julep Tours by calling (502) 583-1433 or visiting www.mintjuleptours.com. Also available through Mint Julep Tours is the “All Woodford, All Day Tour” which will include transportation to both the Brown-Forman Cooperage and Woodford Reserve Distillery, a tour guide host, admission to both venues and lunch.

With the opening of the Brown-Forman Cooperage for tours, the general public will have a chance to see the lumber yard, view the artful selection of staves and barrel assembly, charring and the finishing section. Visitors can also witness the historic art of barrel raising, powerful sounds and the smell of burning oak which are present every day at the Cooperage.

“The aromatic smells are the best part of the tour,” said Brown-Forman Master Distiller Chris Morris. “By toasting and charring these barrels, we activate natural flavors and aromas in the wood which give our spirits such distinct tastes.”

Brown-Forman founded the Cooperage in 1945, and while a great deal of technology has been added to enable the production of more than 1,500 barrels per day, a trip inside is a step back in time.

“We know oak barrels were introduced to the world by the Romans more than 2,000 years ago,” added Morris. “The Romans obviously didn’t have the technology we have available today, but we are still following the same processes they followed back then.”

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