Have you ever bought a bottle out of just sheer curiosity, only for it to become one of the most sought-after bottles on the market today?
Years ago, when I used to do private tastings for friends and family, I ran across the E.H. Taylor line. I started with the Small Batch and Single Barrel and thought it would be fun to buy the others as they were released. I didn’t realize at the time that picking up the E.H. Taylor, Jr. Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Bourbon and the E.H. Taylor, Jr. Sour Mash at retail would be such a big deal down the road.
Why is this bourbon so exclusive? How did it get its name? Is it all just marketing hype?
In 2006, the Buffalo Trace Distillery experienced a tornado and severe storms resulting in damage to the building Warehouse C. During the time needed to make repairs to the warehouse, these barrels became exposed to the elements affecting the maturation rate and flavor of the aging whiskey. Years later, when sampling the whiskey inside, it turns out the product was surprisingly still good, maybe even great. Buffalo Trace went on to bottle the remaining bourbon and put it on the market.
Now I don’t believe Buffalo Trace’s marketing engine was full-steam ahead at the time of release, more so that it was a novel story and something interesting to release at the time and a way to recoup some expenses. The bourbon was a limited run due to evaporation (Angel’s Share), yielding less than 100 barrels, and truth be told, it’s a pretty damn good pour. At retail, this was a great purchase, one that I would happily do over again. On the secondary market, a bottle of this weather-beaten bourbon goes for more than $10K, which in this author’s opinion, is just insane for any bottle in existence.
So how’s a $1,000 a glass bourbon?