Introducing Rare Whiskeys, Gins and CognacsAugust 24, 2010 By: Jack Robertiello
A number of rare, limited or pricy products are worth mentioning at this time. Heaven Hill has released the fourth edition of Parker’s Heritage Collection, a limited annual series of rare aged American whiskeys paying tribute to sixth generation Master Distiller Parker Beam. The fourth release is a cask-strength, non-chill filtered wheated bourbon, using soft winter wheat instead of rye as the small grain in the mash bill to yield a less spicy but rounder whiskey. The new release marks the first in the Parker’s Heritage Collection to depart from the traditional Heaven Hill rye-based bourbon mashbill and their first release of extra-aged wheated bourbon, non-chill filtered and barrel proof. Only 4,800 bottles will be available in the United States.
September will bring Redbreast 15 Year Old Pot Still Irish Whiskey to the U.S. The only Irish pot still whiskey available today, it’s triple distilled and made with malted and unmalted barley. Redbreast all but disappeared until Redbreast 12 Year Old was re-launched in the 1990s as a single pot still whiskey. Redbreast 15 Year Old is matured for a minimum of 15 years in a combination of Spanish Oloroso sherry casks and American bourbon whisky barrels.
Citadelle Gin Reserve Vintage 2010, the third vintage aged release, will be available in October. For the first time, the cellar master has created a gin with a specific combination of botanicals designed for oak aging – violet and iris for flower aromatics and grains of paradise for spice. The gin aged for six months in used 12-year old oak casks given a light char (French law doesn’t allow producers to claim re-use of Cognac barrels, but it doesn’t take much thought to figure out what those casks held before). Only 11,250 numbered bottles will be produced.
Courvoisier will shortly release two age-statement Cognacs, the first from one of the Big Houses in the U.S. to do so. Courvoisier 12 is a blend primarily selected from the Borderies, with Fins Bois and Grande Champagne. Expect notes of violets and orange blossoms, clove, ginger and star anise, according to the company.