Buffalo Trace releases details and lineup for their Antique Collection

This is the time of year bourbon fanatics start to getting really excited for! When Buffalo Trace announces news about their Antique Collection. This collection was introduced 20 years ago and has since created this cult following of collectors. With certain collectors waiting all night when they hear their local store has received stock!

Stores only receive a handful of bottles, so it’s safe to say they don’t last long when collectors find out. These bottlings aren’t just hype, these are some of the best liquid that the distillery puts out!

Here is what Buffalo Trace has to say about each release:

George T. Stagg

The proverbial powerhouse favorite of the Antique Collection, George T. Stagg, comes in at 130.4 proof this year. Last year’s release was awarded 97 points in the 2020 Ultimate Spirits Collection, and fans will find the familiar Stagg taste profile they know and love with cinnamon, caramel and cherries on the nose, and a creamy vanilla with lightly smoked oak on the palate. The finish is black coffee, dark cherries and herbs.

This year’s release contains bourbon from barrels filled in the spring of 2005. Storage location of these barrels varied across warehouses L, K and Q. The evaporation loss for this year’s batch was 59%, a bit higher than the last few year’s releases.

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 the 2019 release receiving a Gold Medal at the Los Angeles International Spirits Competition and also named 2nd finest whiskey in the world in the esteemed “Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible.” The 2020 release was distilled in the winter of 2008 and aged in Warehouses I and C. This bourbon registers at 134.5 proof. Flavors of a soft caramel chew, spearmint and cinnamon can be found on the palate in this year’s offering.

Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye

Thomas H. Handy is the uncut and unfiltered straight rye whiskey. Last year’s release earned The Chairman’s Trophy, scoring 99 points at the Ultimate Spirits Challenge and was also named 3rd finest whiskey in the world in “Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible.” This year’s Handy was distilled in the spring of 2014; aged in warehouses K, M, and N, and weighs in at 129.0 proof. The flavor profile includes cinnamon, anise and honey.

Eagle Rare 17 Year Old

This 101 proof whiskey was distilled in Spring of 2002 and aged on the first floor of Warehouse P. The 2019 release of this bourbon was named “Best of Category” at the Los Angeles International Spirits Competition. This bourbon has a nose of ripe cherries, vanilla cream and oak, followed by a taste of caramel and coffee and a long finish of oak, pepper and fresh herbs.

Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old

The previous edition of Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old was named “Best Rye Whiskey Aged 11 Years and Over” by “Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible.” This 2020 straight rye whiskey release has notable flavors of oak, caramel and dark chocolate, with a finish of coffee, black pepper and cherries. The barrels for this whiskey were filled in the spring of 2002 and it rested on the third floor of Warehouse K. It is bottled at 90 proof.

Slainte

Anthony

A Japanese Dram

I am always happy when we crack open a bottle of Japanese whisky! Today is one of those days, and the bottle I am enjoying SO MUCH, is Hakushu’s Distiller Reserve.

I’ll be honest, I am a fan of most of the whiskies I have tried from the different Japanese distillers, some more than others, but mostly positive. This Distiller’s reserve is no exception! Suntory is doing a fabulous job facilitating the creative Japanese spirit when it comes to the different brands they put out. Hakushu Distillery is one of the top distilleries I want to visit on this planet! Just a picturesque distillery nestled in the deep forest of the Japanese Southern Alps. It is one of the highest distilleries in the world! Looks straight out of a movie. They do say that Hakushu is a green and fresh whisky, so I would say the setting is quite perfect.

Set up in 1973, Hakushu is Suntory’s second malt whisky distillery. The area is famous for its water sources, which adds to the whisky’s gentle and crisp flavour profile.

This Distiller’s Reserve is a No Age Statement whisky that wonderfully incorporates a variety of cask from across their range! Using both lightly peated and heavily peated whisky, along with some aged around 18 years. A wonderful representation of the distillery if you have not had any of their bottlings before! You are getting a perfect amount of smoke, that doesn’t overpower the other flavours. You can taste the freshness, with delectable hints of spearmint, pine and orchard fruits, superbly ushered in by that light campfire smoke. Towards the end you get a burst of the Yuzu citrus and vanilla.

Grab a bottle of Hakushu’s Distiller Reserve, then start planning your trip to Japan for when things calm down!

Slainte

Anthony

Fettercairn 16

Can’t believe it is already the middle of August! This year came in swinging and it hasn’t let up! Ha. We have been trying to dodge and weave our way through it the best we can! That’s why finding the small things we enjoy is so important these days! Whether it is getting out to exercise, finding something delicious to eat, or just relaxing with a fantastic dram!

That’s where I am now, enjoying a tasty dram! This Fettercairn 16 to be exact. This expression was just released in June to be added to the Highland distillery’s revamped line-up. I always thought Fettercairn was underserved with a lot of casual whisky drinkers, so I’m glad to see new life being injected into it. It’s proving to be very fruitful as well!

This is the first batch of the 16 released, and I’m really enjoying it. This one is distilled with chocolate malted barley, that just means it is heavily kilned barley at over 200 degrees. A process that is usually seen in craft breweries. This heavily kilned barley is almost like a dark roast coffee. Gives it a unique flavour profile. It is then aged in American white oak, ex-bourbon casks, then finished in specially selected Sherry and Port casks. Ultimately bottled at 46.4%.

Definitely not your run of the mill monotone whisky, there are great flavour changes going on here that you are bound to appreciate. Definite coffee notes come through, almost like a mocha with those added chocolate flavours. The wonderful tropical fruit notes burst through coffee, with raisins and candied apples. Vanilla cinnamon round off the finish giving you a nice hearty mouthfeel!

This bottle is most definitely worth your time if you are a fan of highland malts!

At the time of writing this, we have the Fettercairn 16 on sale…so you have that going for you! 🙂

Slainte

Anthony

Dead Man’s Fingers

I know what is on the top of my list for places to visit some in the near future…hopefully! The Rum and Crab Shack, birthplace of the delicious Dead Man’s Fingers Rum! My kind of place, Good seafood and good rum.

While I could just talk about how tasty the menu looks, that’s not why I am here! It’s about those outside the box, living on the edge kind of rums, Dead Man’s Fingers. Born from the bowels of the Rum and Crab Shack, located in Cornwall, this rum throws “conventional” out of the window! I like that. While I am a big fan of a lot of rums out there, I really enjoy when something so off the wall comes around that has the great tastes to back that up. There have been too many times an unconventional or flashy product has come out, that once it passes your lips, you realise they spent all the money on the packaging and none on the liquid. I am happy to say that DMF does not fall into that category. They love their rum, and they made that show in their products. We are very happy to stock this range of rums!

There are plenty of different flavours to choose from that will liven up any drink, depending on your mood. All their rums are variations of the core Spiced Rum. A nice blend of Trinidadian and Bajan rums is the basis of this, but to curb the sweetness of traditional Caribbean rum a bit, they incorporated saffron cake. You are still getting those wonderful traditional flavours of rich vanilla and creamy caramel, along with the flavour full tang of pineapple and pepper.

Now sipping the different variations of the DMF goes down really well on a warm summer’s day, these shine in cocktails and other mixed drinks. They will add a kick to whatever drinks you have planned. The lineup includes, raspberry, hazelnut, lime, mango, pineapple, coffee, coconut, and hemp! So pretty much something for everyone. My favourite definitely has to be the Lime, makes for some intense mojitios! I am a big fan of lots of lime, so the more lime I’m happy. I also took a suggestion from them and mixed the lime rum with ginger beer…a new favourite drink for sure!!

We have the whole range online along with a selection of minis for you to try. Grab a bottle of your choosing and let us know what crazy concoctions you came up with!

Slainte

Anthony

Widow Jane 10 Year Old

Some sourced bourbons and whiskies can definitely be hit or miss when it comes to flavour. Widow Jane, these days, have been a hit for me. They have come a long way in their bourbon selection and proofing over the last few years. Their current incarnations of the 10 year old is a solid bourbon and is worth a try to decide for yourself.

Their artisanal whiskey distillery is based in New York, in the Red Hook neighbourhood of Brooklyn. Widow Jane Distillery was founded in 2012, they both source their bourbons and distill in house. After they have sourced the best possible bourbons they can, the liquid is transported to their facility in Red Hook, Brooklyn for proofing and bottling. As with any respectable whiskey/whisky producer, the water source is very important, no exception with Widow Jane. 100 miles north of the distillery are the Rosendale mines, in particular, the Widow Jane Mine. This is where they the inspiration for their name came from and where they harvest water for all of their whiskies. Protected by a historical society, these limestone mines are rich and history, but also provided a perfect representation for a New York whiskey. The hard – yet – sweet water, they believe is a perfect fingerprint for the Widow Jane selection of whiskey. When not in the midst of a pandemic, they do distill every week using the best ingredients to produce an array of unique bottlings.

This 10 year old is some really nice rich sourced bourbon, in 5 barrel batches, and non chill filtered. These are single barrel bottlings, so flavour profiles will vary slightly from batch to batch. You will still get a very tasty small batch bourbon with almond, rich golden honey, berries, and a bit of spice.

Grab a bottle from us and let us know what you think!

Slainte

Anthony