Buffalo Trace Antique Collection

Buffalo Trace Distillery has announced its much anticipated release of their latest Antique Collection. The 2015 release of the highly coveted collection will once again feature five limited-release whiskeys of various ages, recipes and proofs.

The Antique Collection was introduced more than a decade ago and has become a cult favorite among whiskey connoisseurs across the world.

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The collection offers lots of variety in age, proof, Angel’s Share and taste. George T. Stagg has the highest proof at 138.2 and Eagle Rare 17 Year Old and Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old tie on the low end with a 90 proof.  If you think the Angel’s know something that you don’t, you’ll also want to try the George T. Stagg. We love the Angels but please, must you take 84.76% of Mr. Stagg and leave us with only one or two gallons? The Angel’s must have been working overtime on these barrels.

A special note to craft distillers: Keeping notes is critical to your long term success. Invest in quality software to keep proper records. You may remember what you did last week or even last year but these notes go back 18+ years. (Or, if you are like most people, you may not remember what you had for breakfast!) Look for a technology solution to help you keep records!

The 2015 Antique Collection whiskeys will be available in limited quantities starting in late September or early October.  Suggested retail price is $80 each.

Here is their official Buffalo Trace Distillery listing of this year’s five along with the detailed release letters including year of distillation, proof, recipe, cooking/fermentation, barrel wood/char, warehouse/floor, filtration and evaporation loss notes.

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George T. Stagg Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

The powerhouse favorite of the Antique Collection, the 2015 George T. Stagg weighs in at 138.2 proof this year.  Past releases of this uncut and unfiltered bourbon won many top awards, including twice named the number one spirit in the world by F. Paul Pacult’s The Spirit Journal. This year’s release contains bourbon from barrels filled in the spring of 2000. This batch contained 128 barrels, a similar size batch as in previous years. Unfortunately these barrels yielded very little whiskey. Some of the barrels were nearly empty, containing only 1 or 2 gallons. Storage location of these barrels varied across a number of warehouses and several floors, but 84% of the original whiskey was lost to evaporation. Finding a bottle this fall will be harder than ever. This whiskey tastes of expresso, molasses, chocolate, vanilla, and dates.

George T. Stagg - Buffalo Trace Antique CollectionAge Profile

Year of Distillation: 2000
Proof for release: 138.2 proof

Recipe

Large Grain: Kentucky Corn, Distillers Grade #1 and #2
Small Grain: Minnesota Rye
Finish Grain: North Dakota Malted Barley

Cooking / Fermentation

Milling Screen: #10
Cook Temperature: 240 Degrees Fahrenheit
Water: Kentucky Limestone with Reverse Osmosis
Fermentation: Carbon Steel/Black Iron Fermenter
Mash: Sour

Distillation and Aging

Distillation: Double stilled; beer still and doubler
Proof off still: 135 proof
Barrel: New, White Oak, #4 Char; Charred for 55 seconds
Barrel Maker: Independent Stave
Barrel Entry Proof: 125 proof
Barrel Size: 53 liquid gallons
Warehouse: C, H, I, L, M, H, Q and K
Floor: 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7
Evaporation Loss: 84.46% of the original whiskey lost to the Angel’s

Bottling

Barrel Selection: 128 hand selected barrels
Filtration: None
Product Age: 15 years and 1 month at bottling

 

William Larue Weller Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

The Antique Collection’s uncut, unfiltered, wheated recipe bourbon is William Larue Weller. Previous editions of this wheater have won many accolades, including the Second Finest Whiskey in the World by Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2015 edition. The 2015 offering was distilled in the spring of 2003 and aged on the second and sixth floors of Warehouses I, K, and L.  This bourbon registers in at 134.6 proof – one of the stronger Weller releases.  The bold flavors include toffee, nougat, and figs.

William Larue Weller - Buffalo Trace Antique CollectionAge Profile

Year of Distillation: Spring 2003
Proof for release: 134.6 Proof

Recipe

Large Grain: Kentucky Corn, Distillers Grade #1 and #2
Small Grain: North Dakota Wheat
Finish Grain: North Dakota Malted Barley

Cooking / Fermentation

Milling Screen: #10
Cook Temperature: 240 Degrees Fahrenheit
Water: Kentucky Limestone with Reverse Osmosis
Fermentation: Carbon Steel/Black Iron Fermenter
Mash: Sour

Distillation and Aging

Distillation: Double stilled; beer still and doubler
Proof off still: 130 proof
Barrel: New, White Oak, #4 Char; Charred for 55 seconds
Barrel Maker: Independent Stave
Barrel Entry Proof: 114 proof
Barrel Size: 53 liquid gallons
Warehouse: I, K and L
Floors: 2 and 6
Evaporation Loss: 72.3% of the original whiskey lost to the Angel’s

Bottling

Barrel Selection: 105 hand selected barrels
Filtration: None
Product Age: 12 years and 3 month at bottling

 

Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Straight Rye Whiskey

Thomas H. Handy is the uncut and unfiltered straight rye whiskey. The 2014 edition was named “World’s Best American Whiskey” at the 2015 World Whiskies Awards.  This year’s Handy was distilled in the spring of 2009; aged on the fourth and seventh floors of Warehouses I, K, and M, and weighs in at 126.9 proof.  The flavor has been described as fig, clove, and allspice.

Thomas H. Handy Sazerac - Buffalo Trace Antique CollectionAge Profile

Year of Distillation: Spring 2009
Proof for Release: 126.9 proof

Recipe

Large Grain: Minnesota Rye
Small Grain: Kentucky Corn, Distillers Grade #1 and #2
Finish Grain: North Dakota Malted Barley

Cooking/Fermentation

Milling Screen: #10
Cook Temperature: 240 Degrees F
Water: Kentucky Limestone with Reverse Osmosis
Fermentation: Carbon Steel/Black Iron Fermenter
Mash: Sour

Distillation and Aging

Distillation: Double stilled; beer still and doubler
Proof off still: 135 proof
Barrel: New, White Oak, #4 Char; Charred for 55 seconds
Barrel Maker: Independent Stave
Barrel Entry Proof: 125 proof
Barrel Size: 53 liquid gallons
Warehouse: I, K and M
Floor: 4 and 7
Evaporation Loss: 30.23% of the original whiskey lost to the Angel’s

Bottling

Barrel Selection: 58 hand-picked barrels
Filtration: None
Product Age: 6 years and 2 months old at bottling

 

Eagle Rare 17 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

The previous edition of this bourbon was honored with a Gold Medal at the 2014 International Wine and Spirits Competition. The 2015 edition has been aging on the first, second and third floors of Warehouses Q and I.  This bourbon was aged for seventeen years and tastes of oak, tobacco, and dates.

Eagle Rare 17 Year-Old - Buffalo Trace Antique CollectionAge Profile

Year of Distillation: Spring 1998
Proof for Release: 90 proof

Recipe

Large Grain: Kentucky Corn, Distillers Grade #1 and #2
Small Grain: Minnesota Rye
Finish Grain: North Dakota Malted Barley

Cooking/Fermentation

Milling Screen: #10
Cook Temperature: 240 Degrees Fahrenheit
Water: Kentucky Limestone with Reverse Osmosis
Fermentation: Carbon Steel/Black Iron Fermenter
Mash: Sour

Distillation and Aging

Distillation: Double stilled; beer still and doubler
Proof off still: 135 proof
Barrel: New, White Oak, #4 Char; Charred for 55 seconds
Barrel Maker: Independent Stave
Barrel Entry Proof: 125 proof
Barrel Size: 53 liquid gallons
Warehouse: Q and I
Floor: 1, 2 and 3
Evaporation Loss: 66.1% of the original whiskey lost to the Angel’s

Bottling

Barrel Selection: 26 hand-picked barrels
Filtration: Chill
Product Age: 17 years old at bottling

 

Sazerac 18 Year Old Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey

Last year Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old was named the third finest whiskey in the world by Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2015 edition, and American Whiskey of the Year by Whisky Advocate Magazine.  This 2015 straight rye whiskey release has notable flavors of molasses and allspice, with a long, dry finish.  Several years ago, barrels of fully matured Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old were put into a stainless steel tank at Buffalo Trace Distillery to prevent further aging. Since then, whiskey has been drawn each year for bottling.  This is the last edition of Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old from that tank. Next year’s batch will be comprised of whiskey that is currently aging in barrels filled in April 1998 and subsequent releases will contain barrels filled in 1999 and so on.

Sazerac Rye 18 Year-Old - Buffalo Trace Antique CollectionAge Profile

Year of Distillation: Spring 1985
Proof for Release: 90 proof

Recipe

Large Grain: Minnesota Rye
Small Grain: Kentucky Corn, Distillers Grade #1 and #2
Finish Grain: North Dakota Malted Barley

Cooking/Fermentation

Milling Screen: #10
Cook Temperature: 240 Degrees Fahrenheit
Water: Kentucky Limestone with Reverse Osmosis
Fermentation: Carbon Steel/Black Iron Fermenter
Mash: Sour

Distillation and Aging

Distillation: Double stilled; beer still and doubler
Proof off still: 135 proof
Barrel: New, White Oak, #4 Char; Charred for 55 seconds
Barrel Maker: Independent Stave
Barrel Entry Proof: 125 proof
Barrel Size: 53 liquid gallons
Warehouse: K
Evaporation Loss: 58.48% of the original whiskey lost to the Angel’s

Bottling

Barrel Selection: 25 handpicked barrels
Filtration: Chill
Product Age: 18 years old at bottling

 

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