The rumors about Elijah Craig 12 Year Old Small Batch Bourbon have been floating around for months ever since the 12 Year Old Age statement mysteriously moved from the front of the label to the back. It’s now official Heaven Hill, owners of the second-largest bourbon supply in the world have removed the age statement from the Elijah Craig 12 Year Old Bourbon and replaced it with well nothing, nada, NAS – No Age Statement at all.
According to an official release from Heaven Hill the Elijah Craig Small Batch will be a mix of 8 to 12 Year Old bourbon. I’m sure over time those 12 year old barrels will be gone or reallocated to 18 or 21 Year Old stock.
A Victim of its Own Success
Years ago, many of these kinds of bourbon bottles were collecting dust on liquor store shelves. Now, thanks to resurgence in the brown spirit, it’s become a victim of its own success as supply has not been able to keep up with demand. Here’s what Heaven Hill had to say…
Since its launch in 1986, Elijah Craig Small Batch has become known in Bourbon circles as a brand with a high quality to value ratio. This was in part due to the fact that it carried a 12-year-old age statement. However, as the brand continues to grow significantly, Heaven Hill’s stocks of 12-year-old barrels has been under increasing pressure. Therefore, after careful deliberation and with a view towards making the brand available to more, not less consumers, Heaven Hill has made the decision to bottle Elijah Craig in small batches using Bourbon that has been aged between 8 to 12 years.
Starting this week, Heaven Hill will begin shipping Elijah Craig Small Batch as an 8 to 12-year-old Bourbon and will remove the 12-year-old age statement from the back label. This will allow us to continue to make Elijah Craig Small Batch available and not have to limit its accessibility to consumers or have outages at the shelf.
Overall, Heaven Hill does intend to retain age-stated Bourbons within the Elijah Craig brand franchise. By making the age adjustment to Elijah Craig Small Batch, it will allow a marked increase in allocations of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof which will continue to carry a 12-year-old age statement and, over time, increase availability of Elijah Craig 18-Year-Old Single Barrel that was just re-released this past fall after a 3 year hiatus.
So there, they said it, it’s true, the Elijah Craig 12 Year Old Small Batch as we know it today is gone, a victim of its own success.
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