These days, bourbons and limited-edition whiskeys seem to practically outnumber the regular ones. They are sure to get the most attention, as ardent whiskey aficionados look to their chance at a rare, custom or unicorn bottle. There is no denial George T. stagAnd Four Roses Limited Edition Small BatchAnd Forrester’s birthday old bourbon, and their ilk is incredible whiskey. But not everyone has the time – or budget – to track down one. Fortunately, these aren’t the only special editions on the shelf. There are many limited-edition bourbons and whiskeys that fly under the radar, and are underappreciated by trophy-bragging crowds.
forget Archaeological Buffalo Group And other bottles that are impossible to find in retail stores. These limited-edition bourbons and whiskeys are accessible, affordable, and always satisfying.
1. Remus Repeal Reserve
Countless whiskey brands source juice from MGP, Indiana. But the distillery markets a number of its own brands, including Georges Remus Bourbon. With access to the finest casks, including vintage whiskeys that are becoming rarer these days, Remus selects the cream of the crop for this annual limited edition. Each year the packaging mixes two different types of rye puree — 21 percent and 36 percent rye — and a number of ages, usually in the 10- to 12-year range. Although its price has steadily increased over the years, the bourbon inside the bottle appears to be constantly refined as well.
2. 15-Year-Old Single Barrel George Dickell
Stocks of good aged whiskey at Cascade Hollow Distilling Company should be nearly endless. Not only does George Dickle release a bottle of the much anticipated Tennessee Bond bottle and double digit every spring, they’ve also rolled out a single barrel program in late 2020 with each barrel having a lifespan of a full 15 years. Available to bars and restaurants in more than 20 states and growing – each can choose their desired packing guide – 15-year-old single drums will vary, by definition. But with a shelf price that few very ripe bourbons can match, and a quality distillery’s reputation as a guarantee, trying one or several is a small risk.
3. Barrel dovetail
Since its founding in 2012, Barrell Craft Spirits has quietly revolutionized the popular perception of blended whiskey. The company’s mixer team takes weeks and sometimes months to create each product. They fine-tune the flavor through the delicate “micro-blending” process. Dovetail took nearly a year to perfect, and features a blend of bourbon and whiskey finished in several types of barrels: French oak, bottled Old Port late, and blackstrap molasses, as well as Dunn Vineyards cabernet sauvignon. The proof varies by batch but is always the strength of the barrels, and while it’s common enough not to collect dust on the shelves, keeping track of the bottle is pretty simple.
4. Yellowstone Limited Edition
Named the National Park, which he shares in 1872, this bourbon has been made in many different distilleries over time—its flavor and character change with each iteration. The current version is produced at Limestone Branch Distillery under the supervision of master distiller Stephen Beam, whose predecessor, JW Dant, created the original Yellowstone. Each year’s edition varies in composition, with previous editions featuring barrel finishes including wine red and armaniac. Packed with 101 proofs, Yellowstone Limited Edition delivers an unforgettable tasting experience. It deserves to be appreciated more than it is.
Although available regularly, Booker’s is technically a series of limited editions. Each batch contains unique bourbon, which can never be duplicated. Chosen to fit a specific profile—intensely flavourful, aged 6-7 years, and always packaged without refrigerant filtering into the barrel—Booker’s individual batches show just enough variation to appeal to both hard-core collectors and fans who want a relative taste. The batches are taken out several times a year, usually once every three months however, in 2020, there were three releases where master distiller Fred Noyi couldn’t find enough barrels to meet his standards. Each batch is coded with the year, sequence of release and also the name indicating the brand name. For example, Booker 2021-02’s “Tagalong Batch” was the second edition of 2021. The name refers to the way Booker Noe was “tagged” along with his grandfather, Jim Beam, for learning the ropes of distillery. The price has gone up over the years but with continued high quality and proofs regularly topping 120, Booker remains one of the best deals on the shelf.
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