EH Taylor Cured Oak Ready For Release

Buffalo Trace to Release 17 y/o EH Taylor

If you remember back in the summer Buffalo Trace received label approval for EH Taylor Cured Oak and Seasoned Wood. I asked brand manager Kris Comstock about these releases but only received a “just wait” response. It seems official now that BT is moving forward with the release. Several distributors have already received their shipments so I’d be on the lookout or at least start asking your local store. This has just made the spring bourbon hunt more interesting!

E.H.Taylor Cured Oak Small

From Buffalo Trace:

FRANKFORT, FRANKLIN COUNTY, KY (March 17, 2015) – Buffalo Trace Distillery continues its homage to former Distillery owner Colonel E. H. Taylor, Jr. with a special release bourbon whiskey aged in cured oak barrels.  This 100 proof, Bottled-In-Bond, small batch bourbon was aged in Taylor’s warehouse “C” at Buffalo Trace Distillery.

The barrel staves used for this special release were allowed to dry outside in the open air for 13 months, more than twice as long as standard barrel staves. Most white oak barrel staves used for Buffalo Trace’s bourbons are placed outside for 6 months before being fashioned into whiskey barrels.  Collaborating with barrel manufacturer Independent Stave Company back in 1998, this extra aging curing process allowed the wood to dry even longer, eventually allowing the whiskey to extract more rich and complex flavors deep within the oak.

After crafting and filling these unique barrels, they were then aged inside of Taylor’s iconic brick and limestone warehouse “C,” built in 1881.  After seventeen years of aging in the cured oak, this bourbon whiskey delivers an aroma rich with inviting tobacco and dried fruit. A complex flavor meets the mouth with well-rounded notes of vanilla, toffee, and figs, followed by undertones of dry oak. The body is medium with a long, dry finish.

This Cured Oak Bourbon is the seventh and latest release in the collection of  E. H. Taylor, Jr. whiskeys, rounding out the collection of Old Fashioned Sour Mash Bourbon, Single Barrel Bourbon, Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Bourbon, Barrel Proof Bourbon, Straight Rye Whiskey, and Small Batch Bourbon. The Sour Mash and Warehouse C Tornado Surviving bourbons were one time only releases and are no longer available.

The Colonel E. H. Taylor, Jr. collection was first released in early 2011 and several subsequent releases have followed.  Like some of the previous releases, this one-time-only bottling is very limited.   Also consistent with past releases, Cured Oak Bourbon displays a vintage label and is offered inside a distinct canister reminiscent of Taylor’s whiskey package from one hundred years ago. Uniquely new for this release, each 6 bottle case will be shipped in an impressive wooden box, modeled after the wooden crates used by Taylor to transport goods during the days before Prohibition.

Colonel Edmund Haynes Taylor, Jr.  is widely considered one of the founding fathers of the bourbon industry, fighting for the Bottled-in-Bond Act of 1897, nearly three decades after he purchased the distillery that is known today as the Buffalo Trace Distillery. During his time, Taylor implemented several innovative methods still used today by Buffalo Trace, such as climate controlled aging warehouses. In addition to his bourbon interests, Taylor had political ties. He was the great-nephew of President Zachary Taylor and elected the mayor of Frankfort, state representative to the Kentucky General Assembly and a member of the State Senate.

This special bottling of Colonel E.H. Taylor, Jr. Cured Oak Bourbon Whiskey will be available late March in limited supply.  The suggested retail price is $69.99 per 750ml bottle.

EH Taylor Cured Oak 2
EH Taylor Cured Oak 3
EH Taylor Cured Oak 4

Some bourbonr’s have speculated that this is a way to resell some of the Buffalo Trace Experimental Collection Stave Dry Time. That remains unanswered but would make sense. The purpose of an experiment is to find something that works and put it in to production.




    Very interesting indeed!! Blake, have you heard how many bottles will be released? Also any reviews…how was the experimental barrel you refered to!?!

    ABC in Alabama has a product code for Col EH Taylor Cured Oak (A4197) but they do not have any merchandise as of 3/17, they informed me that they are expecting a few cases, but would not give me an arrival date.

    Blake, I have long enjoyed bourbon since late 2014 but I am too lazy to walk into a store or even place a phone call. Please research possible locations in Philadelphia, Macon, Fresno, Tulsa and Guam where I can purchase this whiskey product.

    Oh boy, I better hurry and stuff my duffel bag full of payola then give it to my favorite liquor store owner. Maybe, just maybe he might hold one bottle for me. If that doesn’t work, I can always give my UK basketball season tickets to my connection who works for the distributor in my region. He will in turn tell me when and where every bottle will be delivered. I’ll have an entire support team in place to grab every bottle for myself before anyone else. What I don’t drink, I will either hoard or sell at a 1000% mark up to spoiled rich kids living off daddy’s dime. Meanwhile, the average Joe who actually enjoys and appreciates sipping fine bourbon will most likely never see a bottle let alone give it a try. Hey, don’t despair — Pappy is just around the corner…ha, ha!

    Since it’s pretty much a forgone conclusion (in my opinion) that this will be another unicorn for us Bourbonrs, what was BuffaloTrace thinking by releasing this in such a cool presentation case that houses six bottles? I mean it’s obvious that the cases will be broken up to satisfy the widespread individual demand for the booze inside the crate. What will happen to all of the empty crates? Will stores sell the crate separately and how will they price it if it is sold separately? It just doesn’t make any sense.

    Blake, I like the new packaging too it’s cool as hell. I was just questioning why it’s a six bottle crate rather than a single bottle crate. I mean it’s not like anyone is going to be able to go our and buy a six bottle case unless they have a lot of money as well as some sort of inside connections — how else are consumers suppose to get the crate? Although there is a healthy does of sarcasm in my post, I believe the stage is set for the crate to be exploited by profiteers.
    BTW, l like your blog — you do a great job.

    Thanks! Glad you like it.

    Yeah, I assume the crate isn’t for consumers. Since very few stores will receive a bottle much less a whole case the crates will probably be kept by the distributors and salesmen. Oh well

    Never mind I figured it out. BT knows that the black market gets all of their premium products, so they are now issuing premium boxes that house their premium products to please their loyal customers who cannot get the actual bourbon.. Now when you
    come up short trying to locate
    the nxt premium bourbon unicorn the clerk will give you a real cool empty box to make you feel better. Right? Wrong. What BT didn’t count on is that the black market will undoubtedly exploit the empty box as much as they have the bourbon. I can see it now, empty Col. Taylor crates selling for $100+ on the black market just like empty Pappy bottles.

    [ *note* sarcasm turned off ]
    EH Taylor is BT’s only real premium line of readily available whiskey. With the exception of the small batch, the rest of the lineup runs in the $70 range. It’s listed as bonded, but no age statement. How do you justify that price tag? BT does it through marketing. The wooden case helps sell the image of luxury (man, I hate that word). People who pay that much for whiskey want a little romance. Just look across the aisle at the Scotch boys.

    The Taylor rye is terrific. Do I think it’s worth as much as three bottles of Rittenhouse? Or two bottles of WT Rye 101? I’m not sure. It’s the same with Elmer T and Blanton’s. One has a fancy packing and is now averaging about $35 more. But some (myself included) prefer ETL. (yeah, if you can find it).

    “The average flipper is not a problem. What I am saying is that the entire premium bourbon market is corrupt with greed and money. With so much money at stake, the people who can control the liquor distributors and retail stores are the ones controlling the market. Right now there is no retail market for premium bourbon, it goes straight from distributors to the black market. Bourbon enthusiasts and yes even flippers are squeezed out.”

    It’s almost enough for me to look forward to the next bourbon bust.

    If you want any of BT’s premium offerings, in many markets (especially where I live in suburban Detroit), it’s black market or nothing.

    Being new to the bourbon world please excuse my “green horn” question. I am able to aquire several bottles of E. H. Taylor. My question is are people wanting to collect the single barrel or the small batch? I would like to sell it in the after market for a profit. Can some one guide me? Also, is it just as valuable to aquire the bourbon in the aged cured sleeve or do I need to get the wooden case for adding to the value? Thanks for your patience with an old timer just learning the bourbon culture.

    If your a collector / enjoy(er) great!! If you are really asking us what is the best bottle to FLIP on the
    black market… I’m pretty sure that everyone one on this blog who is not a (F’N) FLIPPER would very much like to go town on you with a pair of pliers & a blow torch (Thanks Marcellus Wallace).

    Wow! I have heard about bourbon snobs before, but never have come face to face with one. Ask a simple question from a rookie and this is the response I get. Maybe I should pursue other indulgences if this is the kind of company I would be associating with on this blog. Sorry to ruffle your feathers Lu Cifer. Now go to hell!

    I wouldn’t be too offended. People get overly excited when they think someone is flipping bottles. The truth is there’s just way more people that want certain bottles vs. bottles produced. Because of that people think, I didn’t get a bottle and I’m more deserving, it’s the flippers fault. This is the comment that probably rubbed some guys the wrong way “I would like to sell it in the after market for a profit.”

    Feel free to ask any questions you’d like

    Hey Homesnake!! Just a lil’ joshin’. Didn’t mean to get you all riled up! There’s a lot of us out there who love the chase / hunt. We have no issues w/ payin’ good honest money for product. The problem, as I’ve stated many times before (Blake is sick of me 🙂 – ), when a secondary black market (f’n flippers) drivethe retail market to rediculous heights, it quite frustrating. I’ve seen end of season prices on the BTAC this year & I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to give the shop owner “what for” (and that didn’t work, give the bastard “what five!”). I save my pennies all year to go out & have fun in the fall w/ BTAC & VW, but it’s getting harder & harder because of opportunists who just want to “make a buck” are causing a serious hurtin’ in the market. I can’t wait till this fad is over. I want my bourbon back!

    I think its so funny people lack the understanding of simple economics… Obviously people will flip since the demand is high enough. This is just common sense. People that hate on this are stupid and should live in China. Maybe then everyone would get a pour 🙂

    Getting back to your original question since the Cured Oak still hasn’t been released in a lot of places — if you want to flip some bottles then yes, you’ll need to get the wooden case. They probably won’t break up the 6 bottles in the box so you’ll just need to call around and find a store that will sell you the six bottles along with its box. Hope this helps.

    The average flipper is not a problem. What I am saying is that the entire premium bourbon market is corrupt with greed and money. With so much money at stake, the people who can control the liquor distributors and retail stores are the ones controlling the market. Right now there is no retail market for premium bourbon, it goes straight from distributors to the black market. Bourbon enthusiasts and yes even flippers are squeezed out.

    EH… I don’t know about that. I mean, last year 2014 I got 16 bottles – 8 of various VW’s / 8 of various BTAC.

    I paid retail to below blue book ( for each. The black market? If it’s not the “flipper” – define: “Black Market” please.

    Flipper is a person who buys retail like the rest of us then turns around and sells at a mark up on CL, bottlespot, etc.. The back market I’m referring to is where independent premium bourbon brokers have direct access to the product before it hits the retail shelf. They have a broad range of connections and use payola and other means of influence to get the lions share of the retail bourbon. They then sell to select clients made up of wealthy individuals. I don’t know what region of the country you live, but in central KY premium and semi premium bourbon never hits the shelves. I know a few local bar tenders who cannot get the good stuff and some friends and relatives in urban areas in PA, NJ and DC tell me the same. So between the flipper and the black market , there just isn’t enough retail premium bourbon left aside for maybe a few crumbs here and there.

    AH… OK. There’s a side I was unaware of. I guess you live in Kentucky (region)? I’m kinda lucky. I live in NY State. Work in Jersey & am an hour away from CT. So I have access to a pretty healthy supply (NY STATE got F’d royally on BTAC this year!!). I have a couple of great retailers in NJ that I’m steady throughout the year with that take care of me come bourbon season. But in NY it’s tough. Everything heads to the city first (and gets price jacked, royally!). I’ve corresponded on a pretty reg. basis w/ Mark @ BT & Preston @ VW. They seemed genuinely upset by the whole thing that’s been going on over the last few years. Do you know for sure that these “brokers” are in direct contact w/ BT / Sazerac? Is it ONLY the BT / Sazerac stuff that’s the issue? Are you sure that they are not in kahoots with the distributor (which seems more likely)?

    I actually met one of these so called “brokers”. He owns a small boutique wine and spirits shop by me (westchester county, NY). I asked about the Stagg sitting way up on the shelf along with some PVW. I asked the price to which he replied, “$400 for Stagg, $600 for PVW, etc. Yeah, the prices are insane. I’m just waiting for one more bottle to complete a shipment to Japan”. Ugh.

    @Lu – yes, PVW and BTAC in NY was tough to find. Of course, some places have a bunch but charge 50x MSRP. I won’t support these guys! Hopefully, this year, I can find some at a reasonable price and finally see what all the fuss is about with this Pappy Van Winkle.

    Random thought: still can’t believe Total Wine “didn’t get any Pappy this year”. hmmm.

    I’m sure the Distilleries don’t care what happens to their products once it leaves their warehouses–they have their hands full just trying to keep up with demand. I’m just saying it is obvious that greed, and profit is fueling much of the increased demand for premium bourbon. It used to be just Pappy, now everything marked limited edition, premium, etc. becomes an instant rarity. I just hope that greed does not ultimately create a bubble in the market that causes it to collapse.

    I think your wrong on some distilleries not caring…

    What? Why? I hope to god it collapses. I’m tired of getting raped everytime I want to buy a nice bottle of bourbon. I want to see these retailer w/ ORVW for $400.00 panic & just give up & sell it for $40.00 – $50.00 like it should be!

    As a retailer checked with Young’s market NorCal division and was told only 120 bottles of EH Taylor 17 years are coming in for definitely will be a tough one to get in the golden state.

    Young’s? Hmm. Its now june and i have heard of two bittles sold by Wine Club near SJc airport, 3 weeks ago. No other stores have got any, and thats 22 stores checked sjc south bay, where i am vip at half of these. So one guy today says local disty has 24 bottles in warehouse and still debating on how they will parae them out. So the Cured Oak has been more elusive than ec23, mich20 and old blowhard 26, way more scarce!

    Picked up a bottle today in Northern Kentucky! Talked to the distributor, only 41 cases are set to release in KY and only 40 bottles in Northern KY. This was a tough one to find, actually had a good friend pick me up a bottle while I was working. Here is to good bourbon and great friends!

    Quick update – Virginia received a 90 bottle allocation; all bottles being delivered to the store this week. Most received the bottles today with the rest being delivered on Thursday this week. I placed a special order at my local store and was very fortunate to be able to get my hands on a bottle. While I was in the store, the manager said he had gotten over 20 calls today alone from people trying to buy the 2 bottles that were allocated to his store. Cured Oak is a rare bottle. From what I’ve read and heard from other bourbonrs, it was actually the cured wood that yielded a smaller amount of finished product. BT was expecting a bigger yield, but were only able to get just under 4300 total bottles….that’s not many at all. That’s roughly the same number of ER17s released last fall. In comparison, there were over 20,000 bottles of GTS released last fall.
    Just some interesting points to consider when doing your bourbon hunting.
    I’m sipping the Cured Oak now – very nice nose, a little sweet with some oaky/woody notes. Taste has some cherry, so dark chocolate, with a hint of the classic vanilla. Very little burn going down, overall smooth finish that lingers a bit on the tongue.
    Best of luck in your search! Cheers!

    You’ll never see it bro! I’ve heard it’s only going to stores that have done single barrel purchases from Sazerac (distributor decided). Sucks man!

    If you do see it, best to you!

    OK – so I’m in Connecticut and walk into my local liquor store today and they have 4 bottles on the shelf at a ridiculous low price. I buy all 4. Canister packaging looks just like photos. My receipt says EH TAYLOR SMALL BATCH 7 – is this the real deal?

    I’m a CT native and have been tracking the Cured Oak release here closely. As of today still hasn’t been released yet here, and there is 0% chance you saw 4 Cured Oaks sitting on a shelf at $40 a pop. Sounds like you have a good supply of CEHT SmB over there! Which is a damn good value buy IMO.

    Finally tried the Cured Oak and wasn’t impressed. It s bland and one dimensional. Thin watered down dry mouth feel. Very woody in a bad way like pencil shavings woody. Leather and strong burley tobacco on the back end. If this was a blind tasting I would have guessed it was btac Eagle Rare 17.

    Sure you did, your just upset because you can’t get a hold of a bottle don’t lie you know you haven’t tried it
    Don’t hate the player hate the game

    Try it yourself and don’t tell me it doesn’t taste like BTAC Eagle Rare 17. I just think it’s a little too heavy on the wood. I’m sure a lot of drinkers will say that’s a good thing. It’s all subjective dude, just because it’s hard to come by doesn’t mean everyone is required to like it. Good luck finding yourself a sample and if you do please share your honest opinion on how you think it tastes.

    Getting just one bottle next week Blake , and I guess the amount of business I do with young’s for Buffalo Trace products gets me this bottle. I was told by our sales rep only one bottle got out for their whole team which comprises of a dozen sales reps. Makes me feel good that I am getting that one and only bottle. I guess the rest goes to On sale like bars and restaurants. Will e-mail you a pic next week once I get it. Cheers!!!!

    OK… Kinda neat… One of my usual sources had a JEFFERSON’S 25 YEAR RYE & a WILLET NINE YEAR BOURBON. Called my contact there and politely asked the nice man to hold a bottle of each until I get there. Got there, the young lady who assisted me, stated she has 3 bottles for me(?). One each of the aforementioned and wouldn’t you know it an E.H TAYLOR CURED OAK(!) at a very decent price. I did not expect to see one this year — SO Damn Cool! —— Guys & Gals!! Be nice to your contacts, spend some (serious) money once in a while (pay the toll!) – and magic happens! According to what I heard, only 3 cases (18) bottles made it into Jersey.

    It’s a breath of fresh air hear about a retailer rewarding their loyal customers. Seems like the folks in Jersey play fair ball unlike here in central KY. Please share your tasting notes — would like to know your thoughts about this hyped up juice.

    Hey MJ

    I am a retailer myself and had one bottle of the Cured Oak this week, gave it to a very loyal customer who loved it. That is how I distribute the allocated items in our store. Just pick one or two stores in your area and shop there for your needs. That is the key these days to get your hands on some allocated bourbons.

    I’ll let you know my Bourbon Bro! I’m holding this girl till I turn 40 this August to crack her open!

    If I’m not mistaken, from the look of my email this morning, Cured Oak came and went in 3 minutes from the PA Wine and Spirits site this morning. Only 90 bottles for the state!

    yep. i was in the last step of the checkout system but could close the deal…. 🙁

    Someone said it was actually sold out in a little over a minute.

    As of 5/7/15 — Connecticut as far as I know is still w/o CURED OAK. Supposedly – according to some “In the know” — the state is stepping in & leveling the playing field w/ this allocation crap. Forcing to the distributor(s) to lay out allocations across all who meet “volume criteria” (based on taxes collected??). Evidently enough consumers have been complaining. Jersey has it (as I’ve stated). My guy hooked me up just a bit over retail (which I was fine with). Some F-Tard down in Flemington, NJ (Central Wine Merchants to be exact) is trying to get $599.99 per bottle!!. SO THEY CAN JUMP ON THAT & SPIN! CURED OAK appears to have shown up in NY State. Arlington Wine & Liquor in Poughkeepsie wants $399.99 for a bottle (ONCE AGAIN, JUMP ON IT & SPIN!!). Anywhere else in NY I have no idea. Haven’t seen it. But, that said, when it hits NYC — look out major(!!) price gouging there I’m sure!!! — I have given 2 locals who have the product — in doing so — I hope my bourbon brother & sisters will resist buying from them. These prices are ridiculous & the retailers are PRICE GOUGING(!!). DON’T BE “THAT GUY”!!! Any of you F’N Flippers who read his & run out to grab the stuff from these retailers just to turn around & try to resell them next year… well, I hope you car ride back is much less than pleasant.

    I know that the Gary’s in Hillsborough got a case of 6 and sold them all out quickly. The one in the Bernardsville has a list but to my knowledge had not sold it as of a week ago but that sounded strange seeing as the other store had sold it all already.

    Gary’s is a bunch of Jack-Offs (Sorry about the language Blake, but its true). I was supposed to be first on the list for a W.L. Weller last November & got completely blown by. Same w/ the Cured Oak. I was told the Cured Oak arrived “Mis-labeled” & had to be sent back (horse sh!t). Luckily another great shop took care of me on it. I try not to shop @ Gary’s but they have a Cab Franc from Cali I really dig that I can’t find anywhere else.

    Picked up a bottle in Maryland today. I heard only 46 bottles for the state. I’m about done with PA fine wine and spirits. I never get their emails on when stuff is released.

    Picked up a bottle at a Bottle King in NJ about a week ago. They had it behind the counter, off the shelf and when I asked they were happy to sell it to me for $72. Tried another Bottle King and almost got a 2nd bottle because they were holding one for a guy who kept not coming in and picking it up but on the last day they were giving him to grab it before they sold it to me he came in and retrieved it. Still happy I was able to get 1 as I struck out in my home state of MA

    It has been released everywhere that it will be at this point I believe, unless there is a lone holdout or two. It has been released in NY as some liquor stores in NY state have it listed on their online website for insane prices ($500+). Over the past couple of years in my opinion this has been one of the toughest national releases to secure for whiskey lovers. Roughly 70-90 bottles per state and many retailers price gouging. I was hoping to get two bottles but feel pretty fortunate to have gotten the one.

    I was lucky enough this year to get 2 of the cured oak bottles in south Texas. We just finished the first one tonight and the second hasn’t been cracked yet. It is definitely a wonderful bourbon and it’s sad that it was so limited and most bourbon’rs won’t get to taste it’s wonderful nuances.

    Hunting season is all but over in maryland. With 2 birthday bourbons, 1 cured oak, 1 old rip 10yr, 1 handy, 1 william larue. Thanks Blake for all the info.

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