Posts Tagged News

New Maker’s Mark Expression Coming Soon

The rumors about the new Maker’s Mark bourbon have been flying for some time now. Bill Samuels has finally addressed the matter in the latest news to Ambassadors and Kevin Smith posted proof info and tasting notes to the Maker’s Mark Blog. See the letter and posts below:

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Dear Ambassador,

Some of you may have heard the rumor that Kevin Smith, Master Distiller for Maker’s Mark, has been working on a secret project here at the distillery. You heard right.

After years of prodding from Maker’s Mark brand friends, bourbon lovers, taste-makers and, yes, even you Ambassadors, Kevin and I looked at each other and said, “Well, let’s see what we can do.”

Make no mistake, we weren’t interested in finding which barrel held at the right light on the proper floor of a special warehouse could be packaged and shipped to stores nationwide. What we were trying to do was go after a specific taste. We had very narrow parameters and went after this new idea the way my dad did when he burned the old Samuels’ family mash bill and created Maker’s Mark.

Almost a year and a half later, Kevin comes back to me and says he thinks he’s done it.

Boy, has he ever.  Totally amazing new stuff. I mean wow. WOW!

The first step is to get blow back from the bourbon opinionaters, journalists, spirits bloggers, whisky club organizers and, yes, from our Ambassadors. Think of this as either a gut-check or, more bluntly as a disaster check.

Here’s where our taste-making Ambassadors come in. You have already received your invite to Thoroughbreds and Redheads weekend, April 9 and 10. I want you to know that we’ll be sampling our new product at the distillery for the first time on April 10, Ambassador Homecoming Day. Even if you decide not to spend the whole weekend with us, we hope you’ll join us for this momentous occasion.

Cheers!
Bill

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Dear Friends,

I am very excited to let everyone in on a little secret. We have been experimenting with a few things down here at the distillery, and we think we have stumbled onto a bourbon expression worth telling you about. The flavor is incredible. It has an intense, sweet, oaky toast aroma and, at 94 proof, it is unbelievably smooth.

Our new baby is a real revolution, with no alcohol nose or taste, and the big, bold flavors come through without a bitter aftertaste. Imagine oak-sweet vanillas, creamy flavors and a long and luscious texture that coats the front of the tongue. Let me say it this way: the taste is pleasingly intense!

Brad Boswell, President of Independent Stave, and I collaborated to create a process that would marry the flavor of Maker’s Mark with the unique flavors found when oak is heated sizzling hot, blistering the wood on the outside, while locking in the flavor in the middle.

It’s really something folks. I’ve been working on this for a year and a half, and it absolutely defies description. I guess that’s why we’re having such a hard time figuring out what to call it.

I’ll let Bill and the marketing “gurus” work that out.

Kevin D. Smith, Maker’s Mark Master Distiller

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Buffalo Trace Experiments with Double Barrels

Buffalo Trace Experimental CollectionFRANKLIN COUNTY, KY— It’s time for the next round! After more than twenty years of experimentation, Buffalo Trace Distillery is rolling out more of their sought after Experimental Collection. The release explores what effect “double barreling” has on bourbon whiskey. In these two experiments the bourbon was aged in new, charred oak barrels and then removed after several years, only to fill more new, charred oak barrels.  The full flavor from each of these new barrels was extracted by the whiskey, creating a very powerful result.

Here are some of this experiment’s details:

1. 1993 Double Barreled: These barrels were filled April 4, 1993 and bottled September 15, 2009. Buffalo Trace Rye Bourbon Mash Bill #2 was used and the product entered the barrel at 125 proof. The bourbon was removed from its original barrel and re-barreled December 12, 2001. At 16 years and five months of age the finished product has a deep, rich flavor that fully expresses the oak character. The re-barreling has taken it far beyond its 16 years. It has a very strong, powerful finish.

2. 1997 Double Barreled: These barrels were filled November 18, 1997 and bottled September 16, 2009. Buffalo Trace Rye Bourbon Mash Bill #2 was used and the product entered the barrel at 125 proof. The bourbon was removed from its original barrel and re-barreled December 12, 2001. At 11 years and ten months of age the finished product has a complex barrel flavor. It possesses a deep caramel color making it pleasing to the eye as well as the palette. It has a very robust start and finishes smooth.

“I really love the variety in these experimental releases,” commented Harlen Wheatley, master distiller. “The end product is so different from one release to the next. I look forward to the new information we garner from each round.”

There are more than 1,500 experimental barrels of whiskey now aging in the warehouses of Buffalo Trace. Each of the barrels has unique characteristics making it different from all others. Some examples of these experiments include unique mash bills, types of wood and barrel toasts.  In order to further increase the scope, flexibility and range of the experimental program an entire micro distillery, complete with cookers, fermenting tanks and a state of the art micro still has been constructed within the Buffalo Trace Distillery.

The Experimental Collection will be packaged in 375ml bottles. Each label will include all the pertinent information unique to that barrel of whiskey. These whiskies will be released in late October of 2009 and retail for approximately $46.35 each. Each experiment is rare and very limited. For more information on the Experimental Collection or the other products of Buffalo Trace Distillery, please contact Kris Comstock at kcomstock@buffalotrace.com.

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Woodford Reserve Releases Limited Edition Bourbon Featuring Specially-Aged Barrels

October 27, 2009, Louisville, Ky. – Woodford Reserve announces the latest extension of its acclaimed Master’s Collection which will be released on November 1. Called ‘Seasoned Oak Finish,’ it is the fourth in the series of limited edition bottlings and continues Woodford Reserve’s tradition of crafting rare whiskeys that extend the category in bold new directions.

Barrels play a key role in producing bourbon, with approximately 70 percent of the spirit’s wrmc-seasoned-oak-bottle-shot-187x300flavor and aroma and all of its color provided by the oak barrel. Woodford Reserve’s new offering, Seasoned Oak Finish, features bourbon finish-aged in unique barrels crafted with wood that has been seasoned longer than any previously used in the industry.

“Of all the distillers in our industry, we are the only bourbon company that crafts its own barrels, giving us unique knowledge and control of the process,” said Woodford Reserve Master Distiller Chris Morris. “As the rough oak staves are exposed to seasonal weather changes and subsequently dried, this natural cycle develops a new range of flavors in the wood.”

This seasoning progression changes the wood by reducing tannins and ultimately creates a new range of flavor compounds. The staves for most bourbon barrels are seasoned for three to five months; however, Seasoned Oak Finish combines fully-matured Woodford Reserve with barrels crafted from wood that has been exposed to the outdoors for three to five years — the longest seasoning known in the bourbon industry.

“By ‘finish aging’ Woodford Reserve in barrels that have been crafted from oak and seasoned for several years, we created a bourbon unlike any other in the industry. It’s the most robust bourbon we have ever made,” said Wayne Rose, brand director for Woodford Reserve. “This special Master’s Collection release emboldens Woodford Reserve with ‘extra-aged’ oak character resulting in a new and complex flavor profile.”

Seasoned Oak Finish is the fourth in the Woodford Reserve Master’s Collection series following the Four Grain, Sonoma-Cutrer Finish and Sweet Mash products. Released periodically at the master distiller’s discretion, the Master’s Collection whiskeys are extremely limited in quantity and bottled only once in a proprietary package inspired by the copper pot stills of The Woodford Reserve Distillery.

The inspiration for the Master’s Collection is rooted in the rich history and tradition of what is today known as The Woodford Reserve Distillery. In the mid-1800s distillery owner Oscar Pepper and Master Distiller James Crow studied and recommended use of key processes like sour mashing and charred barrel maturation at the historic Woodford County distillery. These practices are still maintained in the bourbon industry and, today, the distillery receives more than 80,000 visitors annually and is the only one in America to triple-distill bourbon in copper pot stills.

Woodford Reserve Seasoned Oak Finish will be sold in 44 U.S. markets, and a limited quantity will be available in Canada, the United Kingdom, Belgium, France, Germany, Spain, New Zealand and Australia. Each bottle is individually hand-numbered and presented at 100.4 proof. Available in major metro markets, only 1,337 cases are available with a suggested retail price of $89.99 for a 750ml bottle.

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Woodford Reserve is one of the fine spirits produced and marketed by Brown-Forman

Corporation, a producer and marketer of fine quality beverage alcohol brands, including Jack Daniel’s, Southern Comfort, Finlandia, Fetzer, Korbel, Tequila Herradura, Sonoma-Cutrer, Chambord, Tuaca, and Bonterra. Please enjoy your bourbon responsibly. For more information on Woodford Reserve, visit www.woodfordreserve.com.

Woodford Reserve Distiller’s Select Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, 45.2% Alc. by Vol., The Woodford Reserve Distillery, Versailles, KY ©2009.

Tasting Notes for Woodford Reserve Seasoned Oak Finish

Color:  Rich mahogany.

Aroma:  Deep, complex and subtly sweet; hints of cinnamon, clove, rich caramel and pipe  tobacco, with a nutty oak character.

Taste:   Full-flavored and robust oak with layers of anise, dark berries and cherry fruit,  warming cinnamon and clove spice notes, all with a caramel nut sauce.

Finish: Velvety and long with a hint of crisp dryness.

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Nine-Year Aging Requirement Amidst Robust Demand Causing Knob Creek Supply Shortage

Knob_NothingDEERFIELD, Ill., July 7 /PRNewswire/ –  With double-digit growth fueling demand far exceeding early 2000 forecasts, Knob Creek(R) has reached a temporary shortage. The nation’s top-selling Super-Premium Bourbon requires a nine-year, four-char barrel aging process that sets it apart from the rest — as evident by its loyal customer base. The next batch of Knob Creek will be readily available again starting this November.

Booker Noe, Jim Beam’s grandson and the sixth-generation Beam family distiller who first hand-selected Knob Creek for production, knew the significance behind the nine-year aging process – a number nearly unheard of in American whiskey. It is evident in this complex, full-bodied 100 proof Bourbon that quality reigns supreme. With Knob Creek, Noe set the standard for an entirely new category: Super-Premium Bourbon. In today’s market, the demand for Knob Creek has far outweighed the supply.

“We could bottle the next batch of Knob Creek a tad earlier than nine years to satisfy demand, but that just wouldn’t be right. Much as we want to keep product available, like Booker Noe, we would never compromise on quality, or bottle at lower proof to fill a short-term gap,” said Bill Newlands, president, Beam Global Spirits & Wine, U.S.

“In many ways, a Knob Creek batch running out is the full realization of Mr. Noe’s dream to elevate the spirit he so loved,” said Newlands. “We have to thank our growing ranks of Knob Creek fans for making it so, and to ask their patience while the next batch fully matures to age nine.”

Noe family members today describe that dream as Booker’s quest to craft Bourbons reflecting a master distiller’s highest artistry, and watch them grow as spirits fans came to understand and embrace their rich and full character.

About Knob Creek Bourbon

Knob Creek is aged nine years at a sophisticated 100 proof or 50% alcohol by volume, and is named after the small town in Kentucky where President Abraham Lincoln was born. The intriguing taste of Knob Creek and unique flask shaped packaging has driven this brand to become the number one super-premium Bourbon in the world. Knob Creek is part of The Small Batch Bourbon Collection(R), credited with driving growth in the Bourbon category at the high-end. Today, these ultra-premium Bourbons continue to grow at a faster pace than premium Bourbons. For more information on Knob Creek and the Whiskey Professors, visit www.knobcreek.com.

About Beam Global Spirits & Wine

Inspiring conversations around the world, Beam Global Spirits & Wine, Inc. is building brands people want to talk about. Consumers from all corners of the globe call for our brands, including Jim Beam(R) Bourbon, Sauza(R) Tequila, Canadian Club(R) Whisky, Courvoisier(R) Cognac, Maker’s Mark(R) Bourbon, Laphroaig(R) Scotch Whisky, Cruzan(R) Rum, EFFEN(R) Vodka, Larios(R) Gin, Whisky DYC(R), Teacher’s(R) Scotch Whisky, DeKuyper(R) Cordials and Liqueurs and Knob Creek(R) Bourbon. Beam Global Spirits & Wine is part of Fortune Brands, Inc. (NYSE: FO), a leading consumer brands company recently named one of the World’s Most Admired Companies by Fortune magazine. For more information on Beam Global Spirits & Wine, its brands, and its commitment to social responsibility, visit www.beamglobal.com and www.drinksmart.com.

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Buffalo Trace Distillery Acquires E.H. Taylor Bourbon

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Ky., June 23 /PRNewswire/ — E.H. Taylor is coming back to the distillery where it all began. Buffalo Trace Distillery, located in Frankfort, KY, has purchased the Old Taylor Bourbon label and barrel inventory from Beam Global Spirits & Wine, Inc., maker of Jim Beam Bourbon.

“We are ecstatic about this transaction,” said Mark Brown, president and CEO of Buffalo Trace Distillery. “Part of our family is returning and we are buffalo_tracethrilled to welcome home a true bourbon whiskey pioneer.”

Taylor, the great-nephew of President Zachary Taylor, briefly lived with his great-uncle after the death of his parents. He later moved to Kentucky where he was adopted by his uncle, Col. E.H. Taylor, Sr. Following in his uncle’s footsteps, Taylor went on to be a leader in the Frankfort community. He served as mayor from 1871-1887 as well as a local state representative to the Kentucky General Assembly and a member of the State Senate.

Taylor’s link to Buffalo Trace dates back to 1870 when he first purchased the distillery and took on the daunting task of modernization. He later named the distillery O.F.C. (Old Fire Copper) and continued to invest large sums of money, making it a leader in the industry.

Taylor over-extended himself financially in an effort to use the most modern equipment to make the finest bourbon whiskey available. The end result of Taylor’s financial difficulties was the sale of O.F.C. to George T. Stagg. However, even with Taylor out of the picture, the new owner moved forward using his name, as it was synonymous with fine bourbon whiskey. The award-winning Buffalo Trace Distillery is proud to carry on the legacy of this great pioneer.

“It’s an exciting, new opportunity for us,” said Harlen Wheatley, master distiller. “We are very proud of the bourbon we produce at Buffalo Trace and to be able to carry on what E.H. Taylor started more than a century ago is a real honor.”

For more information about Buffalo Trace Distillery please visit www.buffalotrace.com. To learn more about the other award-winning bourbons of Buffalo Trace please go to www.greatbourbon.com.

About Buffalo Trace

Buffalo Trace Distillery is a family-owned company based in Franklin County, Kentucky. The distillery’s rich distilling tradition dates back to 1787 and has included such legends as E.H. Taylor, Jr., George T. Stagg, Albert B. Blanton, Orville Schupp, and Elmer T. Lee. Buffalo Trace is a fully operational distillery producing bourbon, rye and vodka on site and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Buffalo Trace has won seven distillery titles since 2000 from such notable publications as Whisky Magazine, Malt Advocate Magazine and Wine Enthusiast Magazine. Buffalo Trace has also garnered more than 170 awards for its wide range of premium whiskies. The distillery is part of the Sazerac family of companies, which has operations in New Orleans, Louisiana; Franklin County, Bardstown and Owensboro, Kentucky; Fredericksburg, Virginia and Baltimore, Maryland.

SOURCE Buffalo Trace Distillery

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