No age statement, but distilled in 1998. The only wheated recipe bourbon in the 2011 Antique Collection, and a very good one at that. Higher in strength than last year’s offering (which was 63.3%), but very similar (and equally as impressive). The most elegant and smoothest of this collection, with layered sweetness (honey, caramel, marzipan, maple syrup), fig, blackberry preserve, hint of green tea, and just the right amount of spice for balance (nutmeg, cinnamon, cocoa).
Reviewed by: John Hansell (Winter 2011)
The 2009 release within the famous Buffalo Trace Antique Collection, which celebrates historic bourbon brands and figures. Buffalo Trace's parent company, Sazerac, purchased the Weller brand from United Distilleres in 1999, 7 years after distilling operations at the legendary Stitzel-Weller had been shut down. William Larue Weller was a 19th century whiskey rectifier and distiller, who's W.L. Weller and Sons company was run by the legendary Julian 'Pappy' Van Winkle. The Weller and Van Winkle brands are both produced at Buffalo Trace distillery nowadays, distilled to very similar old Stitzel-Weller recipes, and are among the most sought after bourbons on the market. Distilled from Kentucky corn, North Dakota Wheat and Malt in the Fall of 1998 at 130 proof off the still. Filled into barrels at 114 proof for 12 years and 11 months on the 4th & 5th floor of warehouse N, O, & P. 57.2% of the original whiskey had evaporated when 45 hand picked barrels were dumped in the Fall of 2009. Bottled at cask strength of 133.5 proof without filtration. The 2011 William Larue Weller release was deemed the second finest whisk(e)y of the year in Jim Murray’s 2013 Whisky Bible.
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