February 28th, 2017, New York: Kings County Distillery, one of the country’s leading craft distillers and New York City’s oldest and largest whiskey distillery, announces the first release of its Bottled-in-Bond Bourbon, which will be available in allocated quantities in New York, New Jersey, Maryland, DC, Delaware, Oregon, Kentucky, and Tennessee. The release—the first time Kings County’s Bottled-in-Bond will be available to consumers outside the distillery’s tasting room—will happen on March 3rd, timed to the 120th anniversary of the Bottled-in-Bond Act of 1897. Bottled-in-Bond is the most legally constrained class of American Whiskey and has been the gold standard of excellence since its inception as a consumer protection against deceptive marketing. It’s also a mark of transparency, as it communicates to customers that they are purchasing a product that is aged at least four years, is exactly 100 proof, and is distilled by one distiller, at one distillery, from one distilling season. Kings County is among the first craft distillers to have achieved this highest class of American Whiskey.
Bottled-in-Bond emerged from an era when the whiskey produced by traditional distillers, often based in the Ohio River Valley, was forced to compete with cheap, flavored and colored neutral spirits manufactured in giant factories in Chicago, Peoria, and other midwest boom towns. There, even good whiskey would then be diluted or altered by unscrupulous wholesalers or retailers. Bottled-in-Bond signaled to the consumer that the whiskey was bottled at the distillery where it was made, and stamped with a government seal all under the watchful eye of federal agents. In the 1980s, the government seal and stamp requirement were relaxed, but in the booming world of American Craft whiskey, there are still unscrupulous bottlers hoping to deceive consumers about the provenance of their whiskey. Many brands claiming to be craft are sourcing their whiskey from generic wholesale producers, such as MGP in Indiana. Bottled-in-Bond is as meaningful today as ever.
For this release, Kings County Distillery pulled barrels from our standard bourbon mash bill of 80% New York State organic corn and 20% English malt. These were twice distilled in 26-gallon pot stills back in the fall of 2012 and entered into charred, new-oak 15-gallon barrels at 116 proof. We selected 9 of those barrels for this release, and blended them into a batch that was bottled on December 21st. Total yield was 40 cases of 24 375ml bottles with a 40% angel’s share.
Kings County Bottled-in-Bond Bourbon is made using a high-malt mash bill and smaller barrels (comparable to the quarter casks being used by single malts). The result is a whiskey robust for its age; even as it stands among the older true-craft bourbons, it compares to even older commercial whiskeys. A pungent nose of corn, hay, and peppery spice gives way to a richly textured flavor with notes of cinnamon, chocolate, and molasses. This is the most barrel-forward of all the whiskeys in Kings County’s portfolio, but with the richness and complexity that best complement a whiskey after four years in oak.
About Kings County Distillery
Kings County Distillery is New York City’s oldest operating whiskey distillery, the first since Prohibition. Founded in 2010, Kings County uses New York grain and traditional distilling equipment to produce whiskey in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, just steps from the former waterfront distillery district and the legendary site of the 1860s Brooklyn Whiskey Wars. Every drop the distillery sells is made in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
Kings County’s whiskeys have won numerous awards at the American Distilling Institute’s Craft Spirit Awards, the American Craft Spirits Association, and the San Francisco World Spirits Awards. Eric Asimov awarded its Bourbon Three Stars in the New York Times. Wine and Spirits magazine named its Barrel Strength Bourbon the 2015 Spirit of the Year and wrote, “of all the craft distillers in the nation, none makes bourbon more delicious than Kings County.” ADI named Kings County the 2016 Distillery of the Year.
In 2013, Kings County co-founders Colin Spoelman and David Haskell published The Kings County Distillery Guide to Urban Moonshining (Abrams), which has since sold more than 50,000 copies. In 2016, they published Dead Distillers: A History of the Upstarts and Outlaws Who Made American Spirits (Abrams, 2016).
Kings County Distillery’s campus is open to visitors seven days a week. Tours of the distillery are provided Tuesday – Sunday and are available for reservation at the distillery’s website. The Gatehouses, Kings County’s tasting room, sells whiskey at retail as well as serves flights and cocktails in the historic former entrance to the Navy Yard. It is open 8am-10pm Monday – Friday; 12pm – 10pm Saturday; 2pm – 8pm Sunday.
Gin. As a supplier and now a distributor, walking into a retail liquor store with a new brand of gin almost always guarantees an exaggerated eye roll as the particulars of the product are described.
Gin. “They’re just making this until their whiskey ages.”
Gin. And juice. Once looked down upon by retailers as only a ‘certain demographic’ bought this category, we’ve all bought into the rumors that it’s the next big category.
Gin. We’re waiting on you to explode. True that many (many) craft distillers are producing their own take on the juniper-flavored vodka, but we don’t mind as many expressions of brown water- even when the distiller’s only expression of said spirit was in the “picking” of stock barrels.
All we are saying is give gin a chance.
Gruppo Campari did. 58 million chances, in fact, with the purchase of the premium brand BULLDOG.
Sazerac Company, owner of Buffalo Trace Distillery, announced today the acquisition of the Popcorn Sutton Distillery in Newport, Tennessee. John Lunn and Allisa Henley, both of George Dickel background, will once again be distilling Tennessee Whiskey under the new ownership.
Expect a deluge of Tennessee Whiskey on the shelves in the next few years; over a dozen Tennessee distillers are currently producing and aging the product.
Today marks Allisa Henley’s first day on the job in her new role as Master Blender at the Popcorn Sutton distillery in Newport, Tennessee. What’s that, you say? Henley’s departure from George Dickel, where she served as Distiller, was quiet. Deafeningly silent, even. Continue reading Another Dickel Distiller Leaves for Popcorn Sutton
Jack Daniel’s Distillery is celebrating their 150th Anniversary with a global scavenger hunt. That’s right! They’ve jacked up this kid’s game to a very adult level. Continue reading Jack Daniel’s Throws Global Party This Summer
I enjoyed a recent visit to Corsair’s Malt House in Bells Bend, TN. Click on the link below for the full scoop on their unique smoking program and a walk through the malting process.
Keith Bell, Director of the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission, tendered his resignation late yesterday.
The Tennessee Distillers Guild announced today that Old Forge Distillery General Manager Kris Tatum has been elected President of the 2-year-old group that promotes and advocates for the state’s distilled spirits industry. Continue reading Tennessee Distillers Guild Announces New President, Board of Directors