Michter’s 25Yr Bourbon Whiskey Bottle #83/348 Batch #20I276 116 Proof

MICHTER'S 25YR BOURBON WHISKEY BOTTLE #83/348 BATCH #20I276 116 PROOF

SPIRIT: Rye

VOLUME: 750 ml

ABV/PROOF: 116

AGE:  25 years

Michter’s 25-year-old, single-barrel rye is among the oldest American whiskey available – though it is “available” more in theory than in reality. Michter’s has released just a few hundred bottles only a handful of times, and according to no regular schedule. Michter’s released its first 25-year-old rye in 2011, with several later releases – Michter’s doesn’t like to discuss release dates, because, the company says, the bottles eke out into markets slowly, sometimes spilling into the next calendar year.

In the late 1990s, Michter’s owner, Joe Magliocco, and his team bought many of the barrels that went into these releases during his first forays into Kentucky, a time when few people wanted extra-aged whiskey, and distilleries were putting much older stocks into bottles with younger, and therefore cheaper, age statements. Michter’s then let them age longer until its master craftspeople – first Willie Pratt, now the duo of Dan McKee and Andrea Wilson – decided it was ready. And while 25 years is the oldest age statement released by Michter’s, the company has been known to put even older whiskey into “younger” bottles, in an effort to achieve a consistent flavor profile.

As with Michter’s early 10-year-old and its 20-year-old releases, the source of the liquid inside is unknown (the liquid in recent 10-year-old bottlings was distilled at Michter’s). Rumors cite the Old Bernheim, Stitzel-Weller, and old Heaven Hill, but Michter’s will neither confirm nor deny them. More important is that the whiskeys exemplify Michter’s house style of rich, wood-shaped flavors that despite their age never cross the line into excessive oakiness.

Also like the younger limited releases, the 25 year olds come in a bottle design called the Diva; made in France, it has a distinctive wide shoulder that tapers toward the base, with supple, rounded edges.

Release: Michter’s 25-Year-Old Single Barrel Rye

Producer: Michter’s

Misc.: Distilled in Kentucky at undisclosed sites and, except for the 2008 release, bottled by Michter’s.

Collectors’ tips: Michter’s began bottling itself in 2013, and its bottles feature a back label reading “Bottled by Michter’s Distillery LLC, Louisville, Kentucky 40216.” The neck label carries a designation that is standard across all contemporary Michter’s releases, in which the first two numbers designate the year it was bottled, followed by a letter that indicates the bottling month (A=January, B=February, and so on), and a three-digit proprietary code. So, for example, a bottle with the designation 21H123 was bottled in August 2021.

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