2016 Fall Bourbon Releases

Every fall some of the best bourbons are released to Bourbonr’s across the country. The problem is there’s never enough to go around. For Bourbon’s, fall brings phone calls to dozens of liquor stores and driving around town if we hear a shipment has arrived. All in search of our favorite bourbons. That’s what makes the bourbon hunt exciting.

If you haven’t already, make sure to read “How To Hunt Bourbon”

Annual Releases:

Pappy Van Winkle

With a cult following that would’ve impressed Steve Jobs, Pappy is still the most sought after bourbon in the world. Expect fewer bottles and higher prices.


Buffalo Trace Antique Collection

Every fall for the past 15 years Buffalo Trace Distillery has pumped out some of the best bourbons and rye whiskies with their Antique Collection (BTAC). Collectively, the Antique Collection has won over major 150 awards from almost every whiskey competition in the world. These awards range from “Whisky of the Year” in Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible to Double Gold Medals at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition (but you already know how I feel about whiskey competitions)…


Old Forester Birthday Bourbon

Old Forester is the first to get label approval for a fall 2016 release. Their Old Forester Birthday bourbon was approved today and will include an orange neck tag. The Birthday Bourbon release is a 12 years old, 100 proof bourbon from a single day of production…


Parker’s Heritage Collection 10th Edition

Heaven Hill released a wheat whiskey and malt whiskey the last two years for their Heritage Collection. Today they received TTB approval for PHC 10 (courtesy of SKU). In 2016, Heaven Hill will take it back to (what I believe) they do best, bourbon. This year the Heritage Collection is a Bottled-in-Bond, 24-year-old bourbon.

Elijah Craig 18 & 23 Year


Four Roses Small Batch Limited Edition

A perennial favorite is the Small Batch Limited Edition from Four Roses. They combine recipes from their ten different mash bills for the release. Here are the recipes Four Roses used for the 2016 Small Batch:


Angel’s Envy Cask Strength


New Releases:

Smooth Ambler Wheated Bourbon

Bourbonr’s have been anxiously awaited the release of Smooth Ambler’s distillate, and it’s finally here. Today, they received approval from the TTB for their Smooth Ambler Wheated Bourbon “Appalachian Whiskey”. It’s 100 proof and should be a little over six years old. The Appalachian Whiskey should start hitting shelves sometime this fall.


Jefferson’s Presidential Select 20 year

Are there more aged stocks waiting?

– We are releasing a 20 yo bourbon at the end of the year. Unfortunately, we had to sign an NDA so I can’t give the distillery we sourced from but I can tell you it’s a Kentucky bourbon.


Woodford Reserve Master’s Collection Brand Finished


Kentucky Owl Batch 6

Kentucky Owl Batch 6

What release(s) have you excited?


    I believe if you’re a “bourbonr”, you will get the PAPPY release email Blake sends out to us on here….sit tight buddy, soon!

    I bet that the NDA Jefferson’s signed was one they themselves pushed for. That way they can talk about wanting transparency, without having to back it up.

    Is there any speculation as to what major bourbon house sells their 20’year old barrels to companies like The Jefferson brand ?

    WOW! The “bourbon gods” were with you that day! That’s incredible! I bet the adrenaline rush of actually seeing it on the shelf, *and* the great price must’ve been close to orgasmic!

    “overpriced overrated Pappy”.?.!.?.!.?.Absolute Nonsense!! Buffalo Trace and the Van Winkles have kept prices very reasonable during this bourbon boom because they are in it for the long haul. In a time when people gladly pay $300 for Bookers Rye and $150 for 10 yr old Michters?!?!? Van Winkles Family Reserve Rye is $99 and Old Rip 10yr is $49. When the bourbon boom fades and people start selling off their “collection,” Buffalo Trace will still be standing strong. When or if Weller 12 starts getting some shelf time, who is going to say “Hrm, $28 for Weller 12 or $150 for Michter’s 10??”

    Great comment! Great points!! Say what you want about some of these distilleries and their shady and sometimes questionable marketing strategies…to the contrary, Buffalo Trace has ALWAYS been consistent with product quality and respectful of their clientele by not gouging prices…..and for those two qualities alone, they will always have my business.

    Well said! Trace is above all my favorite. I travel 250 miles every month just to get Trace. Local stores don’t always have it and I don’t want any other…of course, I haven’t tried my newly purchased Eagle Rare so that may change my mind.

    Hey Val!…**Amazing**….What the heck are you driving 250 miles for from BUFFALO TRACE? It’s some good stuff coming out from there, but Wow! Now THATS true love and dedication right there folks….will you be chasing the Weller 12 yr old?……have you tried it?..I’m sure you know they are fast becoming harder and harder to find….some even allocated now. I wish you all the luck in the world finding what you’re looking for (a little bit closer to home tho).

    Unfortunately, the flippers are doing MOST of the *running around*…they’re not Sippers, they’re Flippers!…LOL!

    Fun times as usual in the fall. To answer the question from your updated email, I’m hunting the Four Roses, BTAC, Old Forester Birthday, and Parkers. That’s my order of preference of finding them as well, haha. Good luck to everyone this fall!

    What’s your favorite BTAC bottle? I usually find the Forrester B’D bourbon with ease…not too interested in it. Not crazy about the taste.

    OOOPS, I did it again……found some today at a VA package store….couldn’t resist. .. bought 3……these will make great Christmas gifts to a couple close buddies of mine who LOVE B’day bourbon.

    Does anyone have any info on the price and rarity of the Old Forester BDay or the Smooth Ambler wheated?
    I love autumn, it’s better’n Christmas (except in Utah, that’s when the Pappys are usually released there).

    Oh dear lord… here it goes… (Crashed the site yesterday Blake!!?? Cool!)… Heard enough about the damn “Pappy” & “BTAC” (That said I could use a ER17 & SAZ18 – Mine are almost gone :))… The Jeff 20 & Parker’s 24 are the ones i’m looking out for. The Parker’s “should” be a relatively easy mark. I’m still seeing the 13 year Wheat & 8 Year Malt around. The Jeff… any idea on release qty.? Good hunting folks & let’s hope the lunacy dies out soon. I’m an Old Man & can’t keep this sh!t up!!

    LOLLOL! LOLLOL! I hear that! Every fall, I start having severe and frequent anxiety attacks…..Fantasizing and dreaming of a chance to score multiple bottles of EVERY FREAKING THING RELEASED, *only* to be let down when it’s all over…absolute bummer for sure…sometimes the chase is satisfactory, but I am burning out from all the stress, chase, ass kissin’, boot lickin’, brown nosing, near fist fights and random acts of kindness just to get my paws on SOMETHING!!!! Now that I have that off my chest…..lol…I will be “seeking” the PHC, 4 Roses, ANY and ALL BTAC (especially the Weller and Sazerac)…I curious to try the NEW Sazerac juice distilled by BT….but beggars can’t ( and shouldn’t ) be choosy. If I hapt upon a PVW 23 that would make me *smile* more often. However; one thing is for certain…I’m sticking to my budget this time…the plastic stays home in the freezer!!!! Good Luck Guys and Gals!

    I’d like to try Pappy, just to see what the fuss is all about. But I’m not paying secondary prices to do so. I’ll wait until things cool off a bit and prices are in the blue collar range… I’ve enjoyed E.H Taylor, Eagle Rare single barrel, Jefferson’s, Weller, Angel’s Envy cask strength, Medley, and of course BT, to name a few. But so far my favorite bourbon is a lesser known 100 proof hooch that is smooth as silk and under $40. I’ll be watching for a variation of this square bottle of liquid gold this fall…

    My local liquor store does a raffle to dispense their allocation of Pappy and BTAC. Two years ago I managed to win (and buy at retail price) three bottles of Pappy: the ten, twelve, and twenty year varieties. Of these, I’ve tried the ten and twelve year varieties so far (saving the twenty for a truly special occasion). While certainly excellent bourbon for retail price, especially the twelve year, I can say with confidence that it would be absolutely foolish to pay the secondary market prices they command. There is simply too much readily available excellent bourbon (and whisky generally) out there to waste that much money on a bottle. That’s not to say I won’t be at this year’s raffle, of course, but it’s not life changing whiskey by any means.

    There are always some decent whiskey bars around that don’t charge an arm and a leg for a 1 oz pour. This year I had the 15 releases of Old rip and van winkle special reserve for 14-16 per ounce in Minneapolis and Stagg for $15 an ounce.

    Some bars are charging $30-100 for some of these per ounce, I refuse to buy that for a taste.

    I’d like to try Pappy, just to see what the fuss is all about. But I’m not paying secondary prices to do so. I’ll wait until things cool off a bit and prices are in the blue collar range… I’ve enjoyed E.H Taylor, Eagle Rare single barrel, Jefferson’s, Old Forester, Weller, Angel’s Envy cask strength, Medley, and of course BT, to name a few. But so far my favorite bourbon is a lesser known 100 proof hooch that is smooth as silk and under $40. I’ll be watching for a variation of this square bottle of liquid gold this fall…

    I’m always on the hunt for William Larue Weller and whenever possible, I try to pick up bottles of Weller Antique and 12 year. What’s interesting is how certain parts of the country have bourbons that cannot be found elsewhere. In central Indiana, it’s not hard to find Blanton’s. In south Texas, they speak of Blanton’s as if it’s Pappy. They very seldom see it down there. Always looking for solid “wheated bourbons.”

    I’m also in the hunt for the William Larue. I’m a big fan of the Weller line and have been dismayed to see it vanishing from retail shelves. I was fortunate to find a local shop with plenty of Antique and picked up two cases. I’m also interested in the new Smooth Ambler…love those wheaties!

    Would really like to find BTAC WLW and GTS this year. Wouldn’t pass up a Pappy 15 either. All are fantastic at retail, but paying secondary is tough for anything these days. Unfortunately I’m working in a different state than where I live for the next five months. Anyone know where to hunt in the Denver, CO area? I haven’t had much luck with selection so far.

    I feel your pain…relocating to PA from CT end of September. PA is a lottery only state from my recollection…wonderful…my chances will be in the hands of a computer algorithm….but I still have my “go too’s” in CT…road trip time I guess.

    @ghost, if you need a mule, I’m a reverse transplant here in CT and make that trip back to PA quite often. Would be happy to stop in to your local CT shops and pick up for you (assuming we don’t share the same connections) and bring down….for a nominal fee (sample) of course 🙂

    I’d love to get my hands on a William Larue Weller (still nursing the bottle of Stagg I managed to get last year). Parker’s Heritage and the Jefferson 20 are pretty high on my list of “wants.” But I would definitely be happy with a bottle of the Smooth Ambler. Their sourced Old Scout is one of my favorites, so I’d really like to see what they were able to make on their own.

    This whole bourbon madness and especially the PVW craze has got to stop. Just stop the madness. Just stop. Stop it! Stop! Anything from the Buffalo Trace distillery is becoming frustratingly hard if not impossible to find because so many people who, despite all relevant evidence to the contrary, are supposedly intelligent, logical and productive members of society, have lost all ability to think critically at least when it comes to bourbon. No offense to the morons of the world, but these morons who seem to have way more money than they know what to do with are like “OMG!!! IT’S FROM THE SAME PLACE THAT MAKES PAPPY SO IT MUST BE THE SAME THING AND I MUST PAY PAPPY PRICES FOR ANYTHING FROM THE ENTIRE DISTILLERY!” That being said, BT does make some damn fine bourbons, they just ain’t all Pappy. I can honestly imagine that if you told these knuckle-dragging mouth-breathers that Buffalo Trace has come out with a new expression of Pappy that has been warm-filtered through Harlen Wheatley’s kidneys immediately before bottling, these Neanderthals would buy it in bulk, swear its the best stuff ever and drive the price to $10,000 a bottle (If BT sees this post and does, in fact, come out with that expression, I believe I am entitled to royalties for coming up with the idea). BTW, no offense to Neanderthals was intended either. And oh, woe upon you if you try to talk to these idiots about a mash bill, yeast strain, pot still vs. Coffey still, or venture in to what impact a brick, metal or wood rickhouse, or even where in the rickhouse the barrels are stored, has on the final product as your brain will feel like burning by the end of the “conversation” (if you can call it that). I dare you to try it some time; their eyes will glaze over and they’ll utter some nonsensical comment along the lines of “Well, I don’t know about all that, I just know it’s as good as Pappy because it’s got the same juice.” They obviously believe they’re knowledgeable about bourbon because they call distillate “juice” so they sound cool. In fact, just the other day while talking to a self-proclaimed “bourbon expert” who says he has over $50K worth of bourbon in his collection, I was lamenting my woes about the impossibility of finding a bottle of Elmer. I kid you not, with a wistful look in his eye his voice got real quiet and he said “Oooh, Elmer T. Lee, man that’s good baby Pappy juice.” I was at a loss for words. I’m just waiting for someone to say that BT’s whiskeys are so good because they got electrolytes (for those of you who don’t get the reference, you should watch the movie “Idiocracy” it speaks volumes about today’s society). I’ve been trying to find a bottle of ETL for over 2 months to put together a tasting of all the Sazerac/Age International/Buffalo Trace single barrels with no joy and now I understand why I can’t find a bottle – well, I shouldn’t say “can’t” find a bottle. I did find one on the shelf at a local retailer for over $100 which I flat out refuse to pay so as not to add more fuel to the proverbial fire that has become this bourbon madness or to further encourage these unscrupulous charlatans who masquerade as legitimate retailers. It’s bad enough that we have secondary marketers who are price gouging those of us who know what we like and preying on those who are less fortunate in the mental capacity department who will spend $3,000 or more for a run-of-the-mill bottle of Pappy 23 simply because – OMG – its Pappy 23 and its now a status symbol. What’s worse, is that I’m being told that even regular old $25/bottle Buffalo Trace (at least for now it’s only $25/bottle) is now an allocated product and is expected to become harder to get. I mean, come on people, really? Regular Buffalo Trace allocated? What has the world come to? I’m almost to the point where I’m ready to give up on bourbon and start drinking, well, I don’t know what I’d start drinking so I guess I’ll just have to keep being one of the idiots fueling the madness.

    Interesting about the counterfeits. Im well aware of the issue with wine but would love to get some input on counterfeits in whiskey. Is it a rampant issue? Are those folks on bottle spot and the like for real or grifters (probably a mix)…Any links, articles or just opinion would be great. Thanks and happy hunting

    I’m a newbie to this Bourbon Hunting and it’s all because I have gotten more selective about what I consume as I get older. Visited the Breck distillery while on vacation and it was really interesting seeing how it’s all made and thought Breck was a pretty solid bourbon, damn good Vodka too. Had a glass of 12 Year Weller at a bar in Chicago a few months later and thought it was outstanding and decided to pursue drinking more delicious bourbon such as that. Over the last 6 months I have come to enjoy collecting bottles and seeing a rare one on the shelf is quite like opening a pack of cards as a kid and seeing the rare rookie or a Jordan back in the day. It’s a high that you keep on chasing. So I’ve come to venture around the suburbs of Chicago to find delicious bottles. Found some ETL a couple of weeks ago after trying for months and I have to agree with most people that have commented or reviewed the bottle, it is fantastic. So fantastic I chased around and managed to find a second so I don’t feel as bad drinking the first bottle dry in short order.

    I would love to come across any of the aforementioned fall bottles above as I would love to just taste them and see how good they are. Had a sip of Stagg at a restaurant in Geneva and found it to be one of my favorites to date. Just wish I had a bottle to drink from when I felt like having a glass of something special.

    Just have to say it appears the bourbon folk are kinda getting like die hard hockey fans. Saying your aren’t as a big a fan as me because blah blah blah. This is a constant meat head argument in Chicago due to the resurgence of the Blackhawks. Dumb people are going to invade anything that becomes popular, it’s just the way it is these days. There was a jagbag of a liquor store owner that displayed a bottle of ETL and Weller 12, asked him how much? $60 a piece, but not for sale. Huh? He displays them to show his customers he gets them. I have to say that is probably the dumbest thing I have ever heard from any owner of any business that sells a product. Not that I felt like paying over double for the 12 or $20 more than I paid for my ETL. It sucks meat heads or dumb liquor store owners drive a $20/40/60/80 bottle to hundreds or thousands but wait it out. It will get back to normal just like any fad. Remember the Beanie Baby BS or hopefully sooner Pokemon Go???

    It’s my first time commenting on this site (or any really) and I enjoy reading the comments of these articles, almost more than the article sometimes. Appreciate your hard work Blake, keep up the good work. My apologies if I digressed too far off the original topic.

    I live in Frankfort KY/home of Buffalo trace.I have many of the desirable bourbons listed above.Doubt if prices are going down anytime soon.Secondary market won’t go away either.Good luck hunting

    Almost had a bottle of Pappy 10 at Costco last night for $42.69 but the guy in front of me got the last bottle. My whole day was pretty much ruined because of that experience.

    Created my account after a few sips and can’t remember my password and no place to find or request it… Help me bourbonr

    Don’t come to Vegas. They want 299 for 12y weller and they don’t even know what it is. 399 for 10 or 12 year Pappy. I have to go to CA or AZ to get anything for a good price.

    Just had a local store call me about 1 bottle of OFBB that came in. They are asking $129. Not quite secondary, but a big hike in price from suggested retail. What to do???

    Just picked up a bottle of Elijah Craig 18yr this week. $130. Took a lot of leg/phone work to procure the bottle, as only a few locations were fortunate enough to receive any stock. And the ones I talked with only received a single bottle. Got lucky on this one as it arrived the same day I called to inquire. Most places are holding a raffle or just holding back for certain customers. Found one at other location that had a single bottle and they wanted $295.

    Where is the best place to sell empty bottles anonymously? I have about 50 empties of Pappy and I need some money before I end up on the streets of New York City giving “Handys” for cash. I don’t want to cut a friend of mine in by using him as the go-between on ebay. I need to maximize profit without being thrown into the same boat as a Ryan Chaland. Any advice? Thanks, and happy hunting!

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